German coal states to receive €2.5 billion EU funds for just transition
Clean Energy Wire
Four German coal regions are set to receive a total of 2.5 billion euros from the EU’s Just Transition Fund (JTF) to help them shift to a climate-friendly economy, the European Commission said in a press release. “The Just Transition Fund will help the German regions most impacted by the green transition - North Rhine-Westphalia, Brandenburg, Saxony and Saxony Anhalt - to move away from coal, supporting the reskilling of people and businesses, diversification of the economy, investing in sustainable mobility, digitisation and energy efficiency,” European Commissioner for Cohesion and Reforms Elisa Ferreira said. The eastern German lignite state of Brandenburg will receive the largest share, 785 million euros. “The JTF can be used, for example, in Lusatia, but also in the refinery region of Schwedt (in eastern Germany), to promote the reorientation of companies and the establishment of new businesses,” the state’s economy minister Jörg Steinbach said on Twitter. Industry-heavy North Rhine-Westphalia in the west will receive 680 million euros to restore the land of former lignite mines, push the establishment of new companies in green sectors and provide training and coaching to retain jobs. Saxony will receive 645 million euros and Saxony-Anhalt 364 million euros.
Many regions across Europe have been heavily dependent on coal mining and other climate-harmful industries. The EU’s JTF supports such regions to ensure a fair transition towards a climate-neutral economy. It provides targeted support to help mobilise around 25 billion euros over the period 2021-2027 in the most affected regions to alleviate the socio-economic impact of the transition. The just transition plans drawn up with the European Commission identify the challenges in each territory, as well as the development needs and objectives to be met by 2030.