Finding a verdict on coal. Illustration: Mwelwa Musonko.
13 Jul 2018, 01:20 pm | Luke Sherman, Julian Wettengel

Coal commission starts work/ Climate change to impact wind power yield

Clean Energy Wire / Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung

Coal phase-out commission gets to work

After a first procedural session in June, Germany’s coal exit commission meets today to “lay the groundwork for joint understanding of the 24 experts and four heads”, writes Andreas Mihm in an article in Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. The commission – tasked with finding an end date for coal-fired power production while securing economic perspectives for coal workers and regions – will hear presentations on the economic situation and climate impacts of coal in Germany. Members can also draw on expertise from the European level, as today’s meeting will be kicked off with a report on the situation in the European Union, according to Mihm. The meetings of two separate working groups, one focussing on "energy economy and climate targets" and the other on "economic development and jobs in the region", will follow on 16 and 19 July. In October and November, the coal commission will hold meetings in German lignite-mining regions.

Find the article (behind paywall) in German here.

Find the dates for the coal commission's main meetings in the CLEW calendar.

For background, read the article Commission watch – Managing Germany’s coal phase-out and the factsheets Coal in Germany and Germany’s coal exit commission.

 

Governments of France and Germany

France and Germany pledge to push European energy transition forward

In a joint declaration, the German and French federal governments have committed to accelerate the implementation of the European energy transition. Among other pledges, the two countries will push at the European level for ambitious CO2 emission reduction targets for light- and heavy-duty vehicles and cooperate on increasing energy-supply security. The governments say they aim to develop a test project for cross-border renewables auctions, coordinate the roll-out of offshore wind power in the North Seas and build a cross-border test track for an electric highway.

Read the draft declaration in English here.

For background, read the article Gov advisors say Energiewende will only thrive in European framework and the factsheet Energiewende – Germany is not alone.

 

Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT)

Climate change to impact wind energy generation in Europe – study

Global warming is likely to increase the volatility of wind power production throughout large parts of Europe, a new study from the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) has found. According to a press release from KIT, wind power generation on the Baltic and Aegean Seas could become more favourable, but wind power operators in Germany, France, and the Iberian Peninsula are more likely to suffer from adverse effects. To compensate for the projected increase in variability in wind speeds, an expansion of the European electricity distribution network and a decentralisation of wind energy could be undertaken, writes KIT.

Read the study in English here and the press release in German here.

For background, read the dossiers Offshore wind power in Germany and Onshore wind power in Germany.

 

International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT)

Average CO2 emissions of newly-sold European passenger vehicles rose slightly in 2017

The average CO2 emissions of new cars sold in the EU rose slightly in 2017, according to a briefing paper from the International Council on Clean Transportation. German automakers BMW, Volkswagen, and Daimler are among the most emissive vehicles sold in the bloc, and they are also the heaviest. By 2021, the fleet average to be achieved by all new cars is 95 grams of CO2 per kilometre (gCO2/km). Last year, that figure stood at 119 gCO2/km.

Read the briefing paper in English here.

For background, read the article German environment ministry pushes for tougher EU car emission rules and the factsheets Reluctant Daimler plans “radical” push into new mobility world, Dieselgate forces VW to embrace green mobility, and Early e-car starter BMW plans new mobility sprint.

 

Reuters

German business group objects to threat of U.S. sanctions due to links to Gazprom

The German Committee on Eastern European Economic Relations Chairman Wolfgang Büchele called U.S. President Donald Trump’s claim that Russia would be able to control German gas markets following the pipeline’s completion “factually wrong and politically absurd”, writes news agency Reuters. He said that Trump’s remarks and sanctions against Russia that also target foreign companies there were “an assault on business relations between German and European countries and Russia”. Büchele made his remarks after the U.S. State Department repeated a warning that companies involved in the controversial Nord Stream 2 project could face American sanctions.

Read the article in English here.

For background, read the news digest item Trump lashes out at Nord Stream 2, says Germany is “totally controlled” by Russia and the factsheet Germany’s dependence on imported fossil fuels.

 

Deutsche Welle

Germany is no longer a leader in the battle against global warming – env minister

Germany has lost its role as a pioneer in the global fight against climate change, environment minister Svenja Schulze said in an interview with Deutsche Welle. The intra-parliamentary fight over immigration has also distracted attention from other issues that Germany needs to address, such as how it can meet its long-term emission reduction targets, she added. “I want us to once again be a pioneer,” she said.

Read the interview in German here.

For background, read the articles Germany on track to widely miss 2020 climate target – government and Climate goal failure warrants high Energiewende priority – gov advisors.

 

Federal Ministry of the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety

Recycling is best resource source for electric mobility – env ministry

An environmentally-friendly recycling of lithium-ion batteries is not only possible but a good resource source for e-mobility, a federally-funded project has found, the environment ministry says in a press release. Recycling batteries not only protects the environment – it also reduces the demand for primary raw materials, according to environment minister Svenja Schulze.

Read the press release in German here.

 

Clean Energy Wire

Finding a verdict on coal

Our visiting cartoonist Mwelwa Musonko (@MwelxTax) from Zambia was inspired by the fact that Germany set up a commission to decide on the phase-out of coal-fired power generation.

Finding a verdict on coal. Illustration: Mwelwa Musonko.

 

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