The lignite reserves already permitted for mining in Germany are enough to almost completely exhaust the remaining CO2-budget of the country’s energy sector, environmental organisation WWF Germany says in a short report for the German coal exit commission’s second meeting on 13 July. Burning all of the approved German lignite would release 3.84 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, while the country’s total budget for coal, gas and oil under the terms of the Paris Agreement lies somewhere between 2 and 4 billion tonnes, WWF says. “Science gives us clear guidelines on how much CO2 needs to be saved to still have a chance to limit global warming to significantly less than two degrees Celsius,” WWF Germany’s Michael Schäfer said. At the same time, “Germany is the lignite world champion”, Schäfer said, adding that the country leads the list with an annual production of over 170 million tonnes, over 30 million tonnes more than China, which ranks second.
Read the press release in German here.