German hard coal imports may fall 10 percent in 2019 as renewables rise – importers’ group
Coal importers’ group VDKi expects Germany to import 10 percent less hard coal this year than in 2018. VDKi forecasts hard coal imports of between 39 million and 43 million tonnes by the end of 2019, compared to 46.7 million in 2018. This would make it the fourth consecutive year Germany sees a decline on hard coal imports. VDKi puts this down to the growth of renewables and falling demand from steelmakers. Coal-fired power generation was down 22.9 percent in the first four months of 2019 compared to the same period last year, because of favourable conditions for renewables, low gas prices and a rise in the cost of CO2 allowances in the EU Emissions Trading System.
A German government commission has proposed ending coal-fired power production in the country by 2038 at the latest. Now, the government must decide on how to implement the commissions’ recommendations, and whether to compensate operators for the early closure of coal power plants.