European Commission earmarks 877 million euros for “just transition” in Germany
Clean Energy Wire/ Welt Online
The European Commission has allocated a potential 877 million euros of its Just Transition Fund to support structural change in German coal mining regions, reports Welt Online. Following Poland, Germany would receive the second largest amount of support from the fund, which totals 7.5 billion euros and is intended to support the regions most affected by Europe’s phase-out of coal mining and the transition to a climate-neutral economy. The Commission has identified 18 areas within Germany, which would be most affected by structural change. Seven of the areas are in the eastern German region of Lusatia where 8,300 people are directly employed in lignite mining and nearly 5,000 people could be indirectly affected, writes the Commission. The central German mining district (Mitteldeutsches Revier) is also expected to "face challenges," although fewer people are employed in the lignite sector there, because of "very low innovation and research potential and a rapidly ageing population." With 8,960 people employed in lignite mining, the Rhenish mining district (Rheinisches Revier) is expected to experience upheaval but is deemed to be more able to adapt.
EU member states must agree on a long-term budget for 2021-2027 before the Commission's proposals can enter into force, and the distribution within countries will be up to the national governments. The Just Transition Fund will support new companies and business incubators, as well as investments in research and innovation, among other areas.