2020 emissions reduction goal still reachable – study
A Greenpeace-commissioned study conducted by the Fraunhofer Institute for Energy Economics and Energy System Technology posits that Germany can still meet its 2020 emissions reduction target, provided that several brown-coal-fired power plants are immediately retired and others are throttled back.“Germany can achieve its promised 40-percent greenhouse gas emissions reduction while ensuring its energy supply. The technical possibilities aren’t lacking – only the political will,” Anike Peters, Greenpeace energy expert, said.
The German government announced in June that it would widely miss its target of reducing the country’s greenhouse gas emissions by 40 percent by 2020 relative to 1990 levels. The Fraunhofer study developed two scenarios in which Germany could meet the aforementioned target. If the much-anticipated special auctions for renewable energies are held, 6.1 gigawatts of lignite-fired power would need to be taken off the grid immediately; if they are further delayed or not held at all, 7.4 gigawatts would have to be retired, the study says. This summer’s record-breaking temperatures and prolonged drought gripping Germany underscore the need for quick action, Greenpeace said in a press release. Greenpeace calls for a complete phase-out of hard- and brown-coal by 2030 at the latest.
For background, read the article Commission watch – Managing Germany’s coal phase-out and the factsheets Germany’s coal exit commission and Germany’s three lignite mining regions.