In January 2019, Germany made a big step towards phasing out coal-fired power plants: A stakeholder commission established by the Federal government agreed on a schedule for plant retirement and on measures to support coal regions. For experts and journalists seeking to understand the context of the phase-out decision, scientists from the German Institute for Economic Research, the Ecologic Institute, and the Wuppertal Institute have developed a comprehensive reader detailing what's at stake.
Over the last years, Germany has seen a heated debate over when and how to phase out coal. Coal is still responsible for almost 40 per cent of Germany’s electricity production but contributing to 80 per cent of the CO2 emissions of the power sector. Thus, from a climate perspective there is no alternative to phasing-out coal. But how should this process be governed? How to ensure security of supply? What are the economic consequences – for Germany’s economy in general, but especially for the coal mining regions?
Against this background the German Federal Ministry for the Environmental, Nature Conversation and Nuclear Saftety (BMU) had assigned a consortium of the German Institute for Economic Research, the Ecologic Institute and the Wuppertal Institute to compile information from the wealth of existing studies on these issues into one comprehensive reader. This reader: "Phasing out Coal in the German Energy Sector – Interdependencies, Challenges and Potential Solutions" is now available in English.
The publication explains why the phase-out is needed and how it can become a success. It also provides facts and figures on the German coal industry, including a list of all large coal plants and their technical characteristics. The report is available for download in English and German. The publication can be found on the Publication Server of the Wuppertal Institute under link below.