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Search our website for in-depth analysis (Dossiers), background info (Factsheets) or the latest News, interviewees (Experts) or CLEW Events. Please use AND/OR to find more terms in one document, NOT to exclude terms, quotation marks “…” to find precise terms or use the filters below. Under “Show today’s news” you will find the very latest on the energy transition.

  • 20 Feb 2019 |

    Europe's largest economy aims to exit coal to reach climate goals

    Germany's coal phase-out 20 Feb 2019, 15:00 Germany has officially set in motion the gradual withdrawal from coal, joining other major economies in the global farewell to the climate-damaging fossil fuel. Faced with stagnating greenhouse gas ...
  • News
  • Commission watch – Managing Germany’s coal phase-out

    31 Jan 2019, 13:30 In a bid to improve Germany's poor emission reduction record and to identify economic perspectives for people employed in the waning coal industry, the grand coalition government in 2018 set up a commission tasked with managing the ...
  • 14 Feb 2019 |

    German govt should follow coal exit proposal closely – comission co-leader

    14 Feb 2019, 14:02 Use Teaser Image as container background on grid pages Benjamin Wehrmann Clean Energy Wire CLEW Coal Elections & Politics Commission watch – Managing Germany’s coal phase-out German commission proposes coal exit by 2038 Germany eyes ...
  • 29 Jan 2019 |

    Coal exit proposal may create illusory expectations in mining regions

    29 Jan 2019, 13:49 Expert ifo- Institute for Economic Research Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung (ifo) Business & Jobs Climate & CO2 Cost & Prices Electricity market Use Teaser Image as container background on grid pages Julian Wettengel Clean ...
  • How workers prepare ahead of Germany’s brown coal phase-out

    17 Jan 2019, 14:21 Use Teaser Image as container background on grid pages Sören Amelang Clean Energy Wire CLEW Fossil fuels Business & Jobs Commission watch – Managing Germany’s coal phase-out Germany’s energy consumption and power mix in charts ...
  • 16 Jan 2019 |

    Lusatia to suffer most from quick coal exit – report

    16 Jan 2019, 13:21 Use Teaser Image as container background on grid pages Kerstine Appunn Coal Fossil fuels Coal commission to meet again on 25 January – source Commission watch – Managing Germany’s coal phase-out Germany’s coal exit commission Clean ...
  • 29 Jan 2019 |

    Parliamentarians see tough road ahead for coal exit proposal

    29 Jan 2019, 13:41 Expert CDU- Christian Democratic Union Christlich Demokratische Union Elections & Politics Policy Expert SPD- Social Democratic Party Sozialdemokratische Partei Deutschlands EEG 2.0 | Law Policy Use Teaser Image as container ...
  • Germany’s coal commission has made little progress on detailed exit path – reports

    17 Jan 2019, 14:07 Use Teaser Image as container background on grid pages Sören Amelang Clean Energy Wire CLEW Fossil fuels Elections & Politics Govt support pledge for mining regions puts coal commission on home stretch Commission watch – Managing ...
  • 25 Jan 2019 |

    German energy minister gets booed by student climate protesters

    25 Jan 2019, 13:51 Expert BMWi- Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy Bundesministerium für Wirtschaft und Energie Business & Jobs Cost & Prices EEG 2.0 | Law Policy Use Teaser Image as container background on grid pages Julian ...
  • 09 Jan 2019 |

    Police prepares new evictions from anti-coal protest camp in Hambach forest- report

    09 Jan 2019, 12:18 Use Teaser Image as container background on grid pages Sören Amelang Clean Energy Wire CLEW Fossil fuels Society Commission watch – Managing Germany’s coal phase-out Court's halt to forest clearing fans talk of easier German coal ...
  • Govt support pledge for mining regions puts coal commission on home stretch

    16 Jan 2019, 13:16 The German government has pledged long-term payments to lignite mining regions, removing a major hurdle to reaching a compromise over the country’s coal exit. After a meeting with Chancellor Angela Merkel and Finance Minister Olaf ...
  • Germany’s coal exit talks in final round

    25 Jan 2019, 11:58 Germany’s coal exit commission has begun what could be its decisive meeting on Friday. In crucial last-minute talks, the commission must agree on a timetable to phase out the climate-damaging fossil fuel for electricity production ...
  • Coal mining state premier says Germany will exit coal in 2030s

    09 Jan 2019, 12:06 Use Teaser Image as container background on grid pages Sören Amelang Clean Energy Wire CLEW Fossil fuels Elections & Politics Commission watch – Managing Germany’s coal phase-out Germany’s coal exit commission Germany’s three ...
  • Germany presents patchy climate plan draft to European Commission- report

    08 Jan 2019, 13:15 Use Teaser Image as container background on grid pages Sören Amelang Clean Energy Wire CLEW Climate & CO2 International Commission watch – Managing Germany’s coal phase-out Germany’s Climate Action Plan 2050 Germany’s greenhouse gas ...
  • German coal exit timetable to be settled in last minute talks

    23 Jan 2019, 18:16 Germany’s detailed coal exit path and the end-date to coal-fired power generation remain unknown only days before a highly anticipated phase-out proposal is due to be published. A leaked draft of the final report of the country’s coal ...
  • 18 Jan 2019 |

    RWE sets aside 1.5 billion euros per year for renewables investments

    18 Jan 2019, 13:37 Use Teaser Image as container background on grid pages Sören Amelang Utilities Clean Energy Wire German utility RWE wants to invest about 1.5 billion euros net per year in renewables after a complex transaction that will combine the ...
  • Financial and political risks of coal exit remain high – commentaries

    17 Jan 2019, 14:11 Use Teaser Image as container background on grid pages Sören Amelang Fossil fuels Elections & Politics Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung / Tagesspiegel Germany’s coal exit will have economic impacts well beyond the coal industry and ...
  • 07 Jan 2019 |

    Merkel intervenes in stagnating German coal exit talks

    07 Jan 2019, 13:00 Use Teaser Image as container background on grid pages Benjamin Wehrmann Clean Energy Wire CLEW Coal Fossil fuels Politics German Chancellor Angela Merkel will personally weigh in on the stagnating negotiations over the end of coal ...
  • Coal commission fail would be lost year for climate policy- member

    20 Nov 2018, 10:30 Germany’s coal exit commission aims to propose a path for the country’s phase-out by the end of November. Agreeing a compromise on how to end the use of Germany's most important fossil fuel in such a short time will be difficult, ...
  • Gore says Germany faces historic step as coal commission starts work

    26 Jun 2018, 17:32 Germany has provided inspiring visionary leadership on energy and climate change for many years, but is now at risk of being left behind, former US Vice President Al Gore said on the first working day of the country’s coal exit ...
  • German coal exit can become example for other countries – environment minister

    Germany’s coal commission is a “societal innovation” and shows how the exit from the dirty fossil fuel can be organised responsibly, according to environment minister Svenja Schulze. “If we manage it, it will become an example for many, many nations and ...
  • Climate campaigners launch international petition demanding quick German coal exit

    The climate change campaign group  350.org  has launched an international petition demanding an immediate stop to coal expansion and a rapid coal phase-out in Germany. “This petition is being launched ahead of a highly anticipated coal phase-out proposal ...
  • Mining union IG BCE still expects agreement on coal exit date by year’s end

    Germany will reach a deal by the end of the year on a deadline and way to exit coal-fired power generation, according to mining union IG BCE, reports Nathan Witkop for Montel. Union head Michael Vassiliadis told an industry association conference he was ...
  • RWE to dig ditch around Hambach Forest to keep protesters out

    Energy company RWE plans to dig a ditch around the embattled Hambach Forest to prevent anti-coal protesters from entering the area, the Süddeutsche Zeitung writes. An RWE spokesperson said work on the ditch had already begun but added that it was not ...
  • 750,000 people sign online petition to protect Hambach Forest

    Around 750,000 people have signed an online petition to protect Hambach Forest against plans by utility RWE to clear it for the expansion of a nearby lignite mine, reports the newswire dpa in an article carried by Focus. Over the past 14 days alone, 300 ...
  • Coal exit commission is “moment of reckoning” for Germany

    The decisions to be taken by Germany’s coal exit commission “could have ripple effects around the world,” writes Brad Plumer in the New York Times newsletter “Climate FWD:”. “It’s the biggest climate story no one is talking about,” said Justin Guay, ...
  • “Coal fuels heat wave” – Greenpeace

    With anti-coal protests in the state of Saxony, environmental NGO Greenpeace says that the German government’s policy on coal fuels weather extremes. “The current heat wave is a taste of what awaits us if the CO₂ emissions are not decreased fast,” said ...
  • Germany’s coal phase-out could serve as model for just transition to low-carbon energy supply – opinion

    Germany’s coal-exit commission could provide useful lessons for other countries and sectors seeking to both decarbonise and protect workers, Pieter de Pous writes in a blog post published by E3G, a climate-change think-tank. However, Germany’s recently ...
  • 20 Dec 2018 |

    State premier expects lignite plant shutdowns in next few years

    20 Dec 2018, 14:02 Use Teaser Image as container background on grid pages k.appunn Fossil fuels Commission watch – Managing Germany’s coal phase-out dpa North Rhine-Westphalia’s state premier, Armin Laschet, expects the coal commission to recommend a ...
  • Coal commission delay is embarrassment for Germany – commentary

    The coal commission delay is “embarrassing for the former climate pioneer” Germany, because the government will not be able to demonstrate it is serious about climate ambitions at the UN climate summit in Poland in early December, writes Joachim Wille in ...
  • Business-friendly camp of Merkel’s CDU warns of exaggerated financial coal exit demands

    The business-friendly camp of Angela Merkel’s Conservatives (CDU) has warned the coal phase-out might result in a heavy burden on taxpayers, reports newswire dpa. “The proposals must remain within the clearly delineated budget framework,” said Joachim ...
  • Four of ten most air polluting companies in Europe operate coal plants in Germany - NGOs

    Environmental NGOs sandbag and Greenpeace have dubbed German utility RWE Europe's worst air polluter. “Four of the ten most toxic companies have their main coal plants in Germany: RWE, EPH, Uniper, and STEAG. This is no coincidence: Germany burns ...
  • Environmental NGOs propose to retire 16 GW of coal capacity by 2022

    The environmental NGOs participating in Germany’s coal exit commission have proposed to take around 16 gigawatt (GW) of coal power capacity off grid by 2022, reports newswire dpa in an article carried by Die Welt. Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth Germany ...
  • New anti-coal protests in Rhenish mining district

    Thousands of people have protested against coal use in Germany, some blocking a railway line leading to the Hambach lignite mine, others occupying an excavator there, reports Deutsche Welle. A court has recently ordered that clearing operations at the ...
  • Conservative business association against set end date for coal

    The Economic Council of the CDU (CDU Wirtschaftsrat), a professional association of business actors associated with the conservative Christian Democratic Union (CDU), has come out against an official end date for coal-fired power generation in Germany, ...
  • Coal commission still debating national climate targets versus Paris Climate Agreement

    Germany’s coal exit commission faces a huge task, but progress is slow, write Horand Knaup and Max Haerder in business magazine Wirtschaftswoche. “Participants lament that a lot of time and energy is wasted on questions of organisation and discussions ...
  • Germany must reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 62 percent by 2030 to help reach 1.5° goal – env min

    According to environment ministry calculations, Germany would have to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 62 percent by 2030, compared to 1990 levels, to meet the requirements laid out by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change ...
  • International NGOs call on Merkel to intervene in Hambach Forest dispute

    Nearly 100 civil society organisations from across the world – including Greenpeace International, Banktrack, 250.org, Climate Action Network and E3G – have sent a joint letter to German Chancellor Angela Merkel, urging her to intervene in the escalating ...
  • Quarrels in coal commission further undermine Germany’s energy transition reputation – opinion

    The quarrels in Germany’s coal exit commission over a proposed end date for coal-fired power production in 2038 will continue to weigh on the country’s reputation as a progressive energy transition advocate, Thorsten Preuschgas, CEO at solar power project ...
  • Protest organisers expect 20,000 people for demonstration at Hambach Forest

    Environmental organisations that are trying to set up a large-scale protest against the clearing of the Hambach Forest say up to 20,000 people could find their way to the small forest near Cologne, the Rheinische Post reports. Protest organiser Uwe Hiksch ...
  • Thousands march in protest against clearing of Hambach Forest

    Several thousand people gathered over the weekend at the embattled Hambach Forest in western Germany to protest against the expansion of a nearby coal mine and the forest’s clearing, the Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung reports. According to the organisers ...
  • Coal commission must deal with jobs first – economy minister

    Germany’s coal exit commission must deal with the question of new jobs for workers in the lignite regions before looking for an end date for coal, according to economy and energy minister Peter Altmaier. “We need a restructuring plan for each lignite ...
  • Conditions that allowed license to expand Hambach coal mine have changed – opinion

    German energy company RWE may be legally entitled to proceed with the expansion of its lignite mine near the Hambach Forest and to have police remove protesters, but the conditions that led to RWE’s license for expansion “have changed dramatically,” ...
  • Coal state energy minister says transition in heating needs more attention

    The modernisation and decarbonisation of Germany’s heating sector has enormous carbon emissions reduction potential that needs to be tapped more, the energy minister of the German coal state of Brandenburg, Albrecht Gerber, says in an article carried by ...
  • Investors put pressure on coal companies

    Many investors increasingly doubt that further investments in fossil power plants make sense and ask for ever more detailed justifications, for example regarding the modernisation of old facilities, writes WirtschaftsWoche in a long article. This could ...
  • Lignite mine expansion dispute can only be solved through "negotiations and talks" - energy minister

    In the row over the expansion of a lignite mine and the clearing of a nearby forest, German economy and energy minister Peter Altmaier said that “solutions can only be found through negotiations and talks, and not in public debates,” news agency Reuters ...
  • City of Berlin urges to end coal quickly due to water pollution from nearby mines

    The city of Berlin has urged Germany’s coal exit commission to work towards a quick end of coal mining and power production in Lusatia, Jakob Schlandt writes in energy policy newsletter Tagesspiegel Background. In a letter to the commission’s leaders, ...
  • Ending coal in industrialised and developing countries

    Mercator Research Institute on Global Commons and Climate Change (MCC) addresses the global coal phase-out in a new, short, overview policy brief. The main measures to help phase out coal are the abolishment of fossil-fuel subsidies, the introduction of ...
  • Merkel makes “huge mistake” regarding coal exit – Green Party co-head

    German Chancellor Angela Merkel makes a “huge mistake“ when she argues that the question of ending coal-fired power generation should only be dealt with after ensuring the economic future of the affected workers, Green Party co-head Annalena Baerbock told ...
  • Rhenish coal mining district prepares proposals for structural adjustment to coal phase-out

    The Rhenish lignite mining district plans to present in the coming weeks its programme for adjusting structurally to a phase-out of coal, according to a dpa article carried by Die Welt. The coal-exit commission, established by the federal government, has ...
  • Plans to bulldoze German villages for lignite move forward

    Centuries-old villages across Germany are being bulldozed to make way for brown coal mines, Esme Nicholson reports for American broadcaster National Public Radio. Despite the country’s substantial investment in renewable energy deployment, coal still ...
  • Employment minister suggests infrastructure projects for coal mining regions

    Federal employment minister Hubertus Heil has put forward a six-point plan to soften the effect of a coal phase-out in the three lignite (brown coal) mining districts in Germany. There should be a special plan for road, rail, and digital infrastructure ...
  • Saxony-Anhalt state premier warns against expedited coal exit

    Instead of pushing for a coal phase-out, Germany should reduce its carbon emissions from transport and housing, Saxony-Anhalt State Premier Reiner Haseloff said, according to a dpa article carried by Berliner Morgenpost. An observer in the recently formed ...
  • “Climate policy is possible with coal” – op-ed

    A premature phase-out of the lignite industry doesn’t make “climate policy sense,” it is “humbug,” writes Germany’s former economy and employment minister Wolfgang Clement in an opinion piece in the Handelsblatt. He argues that the legal end date for ...
  • 04 Feb 2019 |

    Businesses ready for faster German coal exit – opinion

    04 Feb 2019, 14:18 Use Teaser Image as container background on grid pages Benjamin Wehrmann Clean Energy Wire CLEW Coal Electricity market Commission watch – Managing Germany’s coal phase-out German commission proposes coal exit by 2038 Climate Home News ...
  • 18 Dec 2018 |

    SPD group calls for swift coal exit by 2030 to avoid “poverty trap climate change”

    18 Dec 2018, 13:34 Expert SPD- Social Democratic Party Sozialdemokratische Partei Deutschlands EEG 2.0 | Law Policy Use Teaser Image as container background on grid pages Benjamin Wehrmann Clean Energy Wire CLEW Coal Fossil fuels Policy Commission watch – ...
  • Economy minister Altmaier defends Germany’s slow breakup with coal

    14 Dec 2018, 14:35 Use Teaser Image as container background on grid pages b.wehrmann Clean Energy Wire CLEW Fossil fuels Nuclear phase-out Politics ZDF The German economy and energy minister, Peter Altmaier, defended Germany’s continued reliance on coal, ...
  • 14 Dec 2018 |

    Climate scientist warns Germany’s coal exit commission could fail

    14 Dec 2018, 14:34 Use Teaser Image as container background on grid pages b.wehrmann Clean Energy Wire CLEW Fossil fuels Politics Focus Online The commission tasked with planning the end of coal-fired power production in Germany may be imperilled by ...
  • 11 Dec 2018 |

    Coal commission to meet again on 25 January – source

    11 Dec 2018, 15:47 Use Teaser Image as container background on grid pages Sören Amelang Clean Energy Wire CLEW Coal Fossil fuels Policy Clean Energy Wire Germany’s coal commission will hold its next full plenary meeting on 25 January, followed by the last ...
  • Environmental NGOs should leave coal commission if government insists on postponement – commentary

    Giving in to eastern German coal states by delaying a coal commission agreement would bury hopes of  a reasonable phase-out compromise, writes Bernhard Pötter in a commentary for the Tageszeitung (taz). “This is why environmental  NGOs, participating ...
  • Coal commission delay reveals multiple failures in work of the task force - commentary

    The coal commission delay shows that the government is taking the work of the commission seriously because “otherwise this spectacular intervention would have been unnecessary,” writes Andreas Mihm in a commentary in Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. But ...
  • NRW state premier Laschet attaches conditions to German coal exit date

    Any date for abandoning coal agreed by Germany’s coal exit commission must be linked to specific conditions- and these must be fulfilled to actually implement the agreement, the state premier of Germany’s most populous federal state North Rhine-Westphalia ...
  • Protests in coal exit commission against NGOs’ phase-out proposal

    A proposal by environmental NGOs working in Germany’s coal exit commission to retire 16 gigawatt (GW) of coal capacity by 2022 has led to “harsh disputes” in the body tasked with devising a plan for the fossil fuel’s total phase-out, Malte Kreutzfeldt ...
  • Legal opinion says switching off coal power plants could be illegal and expensive

    A legal opinion commissioned by coal power plant operator RWE argues a coal exit by policy decree would be unconstitutional, reports Klaus Stratmann in business daily Handelsblatt. The “renowned” energy law firm Posser Spieth Wolfers & Partners argues ...
  • North Rhine-Westphalia govt “expects double-digit billion euro” support for coal exit

    14 Jan 2019, 13:33 Expert Ministry of Economics, Innovation, Digitalisation and Energy, State of North Rhine-Westphalia Ministerium für Wirtschaft, Innovation, Digitalisierung und Energie EEG 2.0 | Law Policy Use Teaser Image as container background on ...
  • Germany “coal-black sheep” of international community in climate protection - opinion

    Germany has long ceased to be an “exemplary student” in climate protection and turned into a “coal-black sheep” of the international community, writes Konrad Schuller in the Sunday edition of conservative daily Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. An ambitious ...
  • Germany needs to exit coal by 2030 to meet Paris Agreement 1.5°C limit – report

    Germany needs to phase out coal-fired power generation by 2030 to meet its obligations under the Paris Agreement and help limit global warming to 1.5° Celsius, according to a report by Berlin-based non-profit climate science and policy institute Climate ...
  • Thousands of workers protest while coal commission meets in lignite mining region

    While the coal exit commission meets in Rhenish mining district in the state North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW), thousands of coal workers protested for their jobs not far from the symbolic Hambach Forest, which energy company RWE wants to cut down to make way ...
  • Pro-coal protesters besiege private home of German coal commission member

    About 100 members of coal miner labour union IG BCE held a demonstration in front of the private home of anti-coal mining acitivist Antje Grothus, who also is a member of Germany’s coal exit commission, newspaper Die Welt reports. Grothus, who heads a ...
  • Germany worst-performing western G7 nation in coal exit ranking

    When it comes to progress in phasing out carbon-intensive coal from the national power mix, Germany is the worst performing western country in the industrialised nations’ G7 club, only trailed by Japan but outperformed by the US and its pro-coal ...
  • Without full attention on quick coal exit, Merkel’s legacy will be “dirty brown”

    Though Germany has championed the use of clean energy, the country is struggling with the phase-out of lignite, one of its most important energy sources to date, writes Michelle Hackman in an article in the Wall Street Journal. It is an energy source ...
  • NRW state econ min proposes setting remaining coal power quantities instead of phase-out date

    The economy minister in the state of North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW), Andreas Pinkwart, has proposed to allocate coal power plants a certain amount of electricity they are allowed to produce before they have to shut down instead of deciding a set date for ...
  • Green Party adheres to holding party convention at Hambach Forest

    The Green Party in the German federal state of North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) is adamant about holding its party convention at the embattled Hambach Forest. “We as Greens want to send a message and support the peaceful resistance” against energy company RWE ...
  • New mass protests at Hambach Forest as clearing of activist camp nears end

    About 10,000 people gathered at the Hambach Forest over the past weekend to again protest against the forest’s clearing to make way for a nearby coal mine, the Rheinische Post reports. At a protest event on Sunday, environment expert Peter Wohlleben told ...
  • Police prepare removal of last Hambach Forest tree-house as activists mount threats

    German police prepare the clearing of the last known tree-house holdout in the embattled Hambach Forest near Cologne to enable energy company RWE to continue expanding its nearby coal mine, the Rheinische Post reports. One activist was injured during a ...
  • Study says rapid coal exit would enable Germany to meet 2020 and 2030 climate targets

    A quick end of coal-fired power production in Germany and a parallel expansion of wind and solar power capacities would reduce carbon emissions sufficiently to meet the 2020 and 2030 climate target in line with the Paris Agreement, a study by research ...
  • State premier says building up new jobs and infrastructure after lignite exit will cost 60 billion euros

    As members of the coal exit commission met in the central German mining district of Saxony-Anhalt with local employers, politicians, and NGO representatives, Saxony-Anhalt’s state premier, Reiner Haseloff (CDU), reminded the commission members that they ...
  • Legal opinion commissioned by Greenpeace says clearing of Hambach Forest illegal

    German energy company RWE will breach the law if it continues to press ahead with the clearing of the Hambach Forest in western Germany to expand its nearby lignite mine, environmental NGO Greenpeace says in a press release. According to a legal opinion ...
  • Clearing of anti-coal activist camps halted after journalist falls to death

    The government of the state of North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) has stopped the clearing of anti-coal activist camps in Hambach Forest “until further notice” after a journalist fell to his death, writes Der Tagesspiegel. “We cannot simply return to business ...
  • State will have to spend “several billions of euros” to support coal regions – finance minister

    30 Nov 2018, 15:00 Use Teaser Image as container background on grid pages Julian Wettengel Clean Energy Wire CLEW Climate & CO2 Fossil fuels Cost & Prices Tagesspiegel / dpa German finance minister Olaf Scholz said it is “perfectly clear” that the ...
  • Coal commission can finish fast if finance min puts money up – RWE CEO

    29 Nov 2018, 15:40 Use Teaser Image as container background on grid pages Sven Egenter Clean Energy Wire CLEW Coal Climate & CO2 Fossil fuels Government Clean Energy Wire Germany’s coal commission can conclude its work soon if the country’s finance ...
  • Coal commission members eager to find solutions, but framework conditions “chaotic” – task force member

    29 Nov 2018, 15:38 Use Teaser Image as container background on grid pages Julian Wettengel Clean Energy Wire CLEW Coal Climate & CO2 Fossil fuels Clean Energy Wire The members of Germany’s coal exit commission are “willing to work together ...
  • Coal exit must be initiated quickly to reach climate goals – government advisors

    The speedy start of the coal exit is more important than finding a final end date, writes the Advisory Council on the Environment (SRU), an expert advisory panel to the government focussing on environmental protection, in a statement. “For the climate, ...
  • Hambach Forest struggle profoundly significant for future of German energy system – opinion

    The outcome of the struggle over the embattled Hambach Forest, which German energy company RWE wants to cut down to make way for the expansion of a lignite mine, will have “profound significance for the future of energy in Germany, as well as for climate ...
  • Media report about coal exit proposal causes irritation

    A report about a proposal by one of Germany’s   coal commission   co-heads for a   coal exit   by 2038 has caused irritation. Co-chair Ronald   Pofalla also proposed taking 5-7 gigawatts of coal capacity off-line and into a security reserve by 2020, and ...
  • RWE risks image disaster by throwing activists out of Hambach Forest

    The start of evictions of anti-coal activists in the Hambach Forest “has already done enormous damage to the image of [energy company] RWE”, which could turn into a veritable “disaster” once the company starts cutting trees in October, Jürgen Flauger, ...
  • Environmentalists should get over Hambach Forest and focus on coal exit commission – opinion

    The apparent preparation of clearing operations in the Hambach Forest is a sad event for many environmentalists who have hoped to preserve the old trees for years, but they should keep their focus on making progress in Germany’s coal exit commission, ...
  • Conflict in Hambach Forest threatens coal exit commission’s stability

    The conflict over coal-mining expansion in the Hambach Forest, where police have started evicting anti-coal activists, is becoming an issue that could threaten the stability of Germany’s coal exit commission, news website Spiegel Online writes. Commission ...
  • Hambach Forest: RWE head and environmental NGOs meet

    German energy company RWE and environmental organisations have met to discuss the situation in the embattled Hambach Forest that energy company RWE wants to cut down to make room for a nearby coal mine, reports Spiegel Online. RWE head Rolf Martin Schmitz ...
  • Coal exit in major coal-using economies feasible within 20-30 years, would bring social and economic benefits - study

    Implementing pathways away from coal-fired power production in line with the Paris Climate Agreement is feasible in the major coal-using economies within 20 to 30 years, according to a comparative study on six countries, including Germany, Australia, ...
  • NRW state premier Laschet will not mediate Hambach coal mine talks

    Armin Laschet, premier of North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW), Germany’s largest federal state, is not willing to act as a mediator in the negotiations between environmental activists and the energy company RWE over the clearing of a forest near the Hambach ...
  • German government should annul coal exit commission’s mandate and decide for itself – opinion

    Due to its apparent lack of will to achieve a consensus, the mandate of Germany’s coal exit commission should be annulled and the government itself should find a consensus on how to end coal-fired power production in the country, Angela Hennersdorf writes ...
  • Four climate policy initiatives for a fair transformation

    Climate policy must take into account all the affected people, empower them, hold those responsible for climate change accountable, and create both global and national prospects for the future, according to the German Advisory Council on Global Change ...
  • Environment minister Schulze reiterates opposition to coal mine expansion

    Germany’s environment minister Svenja Schulze has reiterated her opposition to the clearing of Hambach Forest for the expansion of a nearby lignite mine while the country’s coal exit commission discusses the end of the fossil fuel in Germany, the ...
  • RWE accuses anti-coal activists in Hambach Forest of “blackmail”

    The head of German energy company RWE’s workers’ council, Harald Louis, says activists in the embattled Hambach Forest who are trying to prevent the expansion of a nearby coal mine are “blackmailing” the company by using the country’s coal exit commission ...
  • RWE would be wise to abandon logging plans for coal mine expansion - opinion

    Forest protection has played an important role in the history of Germany’s Energiewende, or energy transition, and the current developments at the Hambach Forest, which is under threat by the expansion of a lignite mine, could end up as another example in ...
  • German government misses deadline to gauge CO2-savings by stand-by coal plants

    The German government has failed to report the carbon emissions savings achieved by putting several coal plants into a security stand-by mode reserved for supply bottlenecks, the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung reports. An assessment scheduled for the ...
  • German environment minister against mine expansion during coal commission’s mandate

    Germany’s environment minister, Svenja Schulze, has weighed in on the dispute between environmental groups and energy company RWE over the expansion of a lignite mine and the clearing of a nearby forest, tagesschau.de reports. “If we want to achieve a ...
  • Coal exit highlights contradictions in climate and energy policy for eastern Germany

    Devising a plan for Germany’s coal exit through a commission is a tough job with many  pitfalls for policymakers, Cecile Boutelet reports for Le Monde. Coal region Lusatia in eastern Germany is one example of a place “where the contradictory narratives of ...
  • North Rhine-Westphalia key to Germany’s energy transition – report

    In order for Germany to meet its 2030 emissions reduction target, a rapid phase-out of coal-fired electricity generation is needed across the country, but especially in the federal state of North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW), according to a report published by ...
  • Coal incompatible with future energy system - report

    Coal-fired power generation does not have a future in Germany’s energy transition, write the environmental NGO WWF Germany and the green power provider LichtBlick in a joint report, seen by the Clean Energy Wire. In their report “Dead end coal – Why coal ...
  • Finding compromises key to energy transition’s success – commentary

    The most important political decisions in Germany cannot be made by directives but must be earned by reconciling antagonist factions in society trough compromise and consideration, Thorsten Knuf writes in a commentary for the Frankfurter Rundschau. “This ...
  • Thousands to relocate due to expansion of German lignite mine

    More than a dozen villages are to be demolished and thousands of families relocated to make way for the expansion of Garzweiler opencast lignite mine, Stefanie Glinski reports for the Thomson Reuters Foundation. Located in the German federal state of ...
  • On Germany’s highest mountain, climate activists call for coal exit

    This summer's heatwave show that Germany must exit coal quickly, according to Greenpeace. The NGO said 10 of their activists ascended a glacier on Germany’s highest mountain, the Zugspitze, to unfold a banner saying “Summer 2018: heat, drought, ...
  • Frankfurt an der Oder says goodbye to coal

    The electric utility of Frankfurt an der Oder, a city located on the German-Polish border and not to be confused with Germany's banking capital Frankfurt am Main, has joined its Cottbus counterpart and decided to replace its coal-fired cogeneration ...
  • Reinsurance company Munich Re to cut investments in coal projects

    German reinsurance company Munich Re will no longer invest in companies that make more than 30 percent of their revenues from coal-based operations, CEO Joachim Wenning said in a guest article in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. “Climate change is a ...
  • Lignite fund wrong way to deal with coal’s financial legacy – commentary

    A state-managed fund for dealing with the financial legacy of lignite mining in Germany is the wrong way to ensure that the extraction’s long-term effects are dealt with properly, Antje Höning writes in a commentary for the General Anzeiger Bonn. Contrary ...
  • 12 Oct 2018 |

    Special deals for mining areas to ease coal exit – task force draft

    12 Oct 2018, 16:40 Germany’s coal commission wants to ease the coal exit by granting lignite mining regions preferential treatment in infrastructure and innovation projects, according to a leaked draft report seen by the Clean Energy Wire. The paper ...
  • Coal-exit commission must prioritise affected workers’ jobs – union president

    Germany’s recently-formed coal-exit commission must take into account the jobs of those employed in the coal sector, said Michael Vassiliadis, president of the mining, chemical, and energy industry union IC BGE, in an interview with Tagesspiegel ...
  • 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 – ...
  • Permitted lignite reserves exhaust German energy sector’s remaining CO2-budget – report

    The lignite reserves already permitted for mining in Germany are enough to almost completely exhaust the remaining CO 2-budget of the country’s energy sector, environmental organisation WWF Germany says in a short report for the German coal exit ...
  • German court stops controversial clearing of forest for lignite mine

    05 Oct 2018, 17:00 Clearing operations at the embattled Hambach Forest to make way for a coal mine have to be halted to decide whether the forest is protected by EU environmental rules, a German court has decided. The judges said energy company RWE did ...
  • Lignite phase-out would hit eastern Germany hardest – study

    Lignite is still of economic significance in Germany’s brown coal regions, and the coal phase-out must be actively managed especially in the economically weak eastern German region of Lusatia, writes the Rhineland-Westphalia Institute for Economic ...
  • German government denies media report on latest coal exit commission draft

    The German government denies a report by news website Spiegel Online that the country's coal exit commission will propose to initiate the fossil fuel's phase-out in the west of the country and favours to finish it by 2035. Germany’s economy and ...
  • Merkel’s conservatives call on coal commission to prioritise “thoroughness over speed”

    The parliamentary group of German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservative CDU party has welcomed the first session of the commission tasked with planning the country’s coal exit, but stressed that “thoroughness must come before speed” in the group’s ...
  • German coal states' economy ministers warn against “hasty exit plans”

    The economy ministers of the German coal states Brandenburg, Saxony, and North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) have warned the country’s coal exit commission against coming up with “hasty” scenarios for phasing out fossil power sources. In a press release issued ...
  • Climate economist and co-chair of coal commission says 2030 climate targets define group’s duty

    The 2030 emissions reduction target defines the duty and objectives of the commission tasked with planning Germany’s coal exit, climate economist Barbara Praetorius said in an interview with Der Tagesspiegel. “The 2030 climate targets are set, they ...
  • Coal state premiers say mining plans run well into 2040s

    The premiers of the German coal mining states of Saxony and North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) have said they still plan coal mining activities to continue well into the 2040s. In a guest article published in the Handelsblatt on the day of the first meeting of ...
  • Al Gore calls on German coal commission to make “historic“ decision

    Germany has provided inspiring and visionary leadership on energy and climate for many years, but is now at risk of being left behind, according to former US Vice President Al Gore. While stakeholders met for the first session of Germany’s coal exit ...
  • Report about coal exit plan causes stir ahead of commission meeting

    17 Sep 2018, 10:30 A report about a proposal by one of Germany’s coal commission co-heads for a coal exit by 2038 has caused irritation. Some commission members were quick to reject the report and warned that the commission's work was in peril should ...
  • Germany can reach 2020 climate target with three year delay – study

    Germany can reach its 2020 greenhouse gas reduction target with a delay of three years by taking 9 gigawatts (GW) of lignite-fired power plant capacity offline by 2023 without endangering power supply security, according to a study by Aurora Energy ...
  • Task force to decide report on economic perspectives for coal regions

    At a meeting in the Rhenish lignite mining region, Germany’s coal exit commission debated first proposals on how to cushion the effects of an exit from coal-fired power generation in affected regions. A draft interim report, seen by the Clean Energy Wire, ...
  • Economy minister proposes retiring 5 GW of lignite power capacity – sources

    Economy and energy minister Peter Altmaier has proposed quickly retiring five gigawatts of lignite power generation capacity with a view to the country’s ongoing talks about a coal phase-out, sources told the Rheinische Post. In addition, he suggested ...
  • Pro- and anti-coal protesters besiege German coal exit commission visiting mining district

    Hundreds of coal workers in the eastern German region Lusatia welcomed the country’s coal exit commission during a trip to the region with protest banners saying, “good jobs are being trampled on,” Michael Bauchmüller writes in the Süddeutsche Zeitung. ...
  • Saving Hambach Forest would cost billions of euros – RWE head

    Not cutting down the embattled Hambach Forest would cost four to five billion euros, Rolf Martin Schmitz, head of energy company RWE, which wants to clear the forest to expand a nearby lignite mine, said  in the political talk show Maybrit Illner on ...
  • Geman police move into Hambach Forest climate activist camp to “remove barricades”

    Police forces in the German federal state of North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) have moved into the embattled Hambach Forest that energy company RWE wants to cut down to make room for a nearby coal mine, the Rheinische Post reports. On Twitter, police said they ...
  • Consternation over SPD leader Nahles’s attack on Green climate policy

    The criticism of the Green Party’s climate policy by Andrea Nahles, leader of the  SPD, Germany’s junior government coalition partner, has led to consternation and objections by the Greens and environmental groups. NGO Greenpeace said in a mailed ...
  • “Let’s do our homework before setting more ambitious climate goals“ – env min

    German environment minister Svenja Schulze backs  Chancellor Angela Merkel position on the European Commission’s proposal to raise the 2030 greenhouse gas reduction target. “We have set goals for 2020, which we will not reach. To then say ‘we will set ...
  • Citizens’ groups repeat call for standstill agreement on coal mine expansion in Germany

    Several citizens’ and environmental groups in Germany have reiterated their call for a standstill agreement on lignite mine expansion until the speed and scope of the country’s coal phase-out has been determined, Ralph Jansen writes in the Kölner Stadt ...
  • RWE prepares clearing of Hambach Forest for coal mining despite calls for moratorium – report

    German energy company RWE has rejected calls for a moratorium on forest clearing as part of lignite mining during its negotiations with the country’s coal exit commission, and said it would continue mining operations at the controversial Hambach mine, the ...
  • 2020 emissions reduction goal still reachable – study

    A Greenpeace-commissioned study conducted by the Fraunhofer Institute for Energy Economics and Energy System Technology posits that Germany can still meet its 2020 emissions reduction target, provided that several brown-coal-fired power plants are ...
  • Government worried short-term coal plant closures will trigger compensation claims – report

    The German government is concerned that short-term coal plant closures might lead to expensive compensation claims by operators, reports Klaus Stratmann in business daily Handelsblatt in a double-page article. A utility source said “we will see each other ...
  • Energy minister says German coal exit must set example for successful decarbonisation

    The phase-out of coal-fired power production in Germany must become a model case for other countries that want to reconcile economic prosperity with an effective reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, economy and energy minister Peter Altmaier (CDU) has ...
  • IPCC report: must not waste time on climate – German env min

    The IPCC Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C, released today, shows the urgent need for ambitious climate action, according to the German government. In a press release, environment minister Svenja Schulze said the key message of the report is that ...
  • Police start clearing anti-coal activist camp in Hambach Forest

    Police in the western German state of North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) have started clearing the anti-coal activist camp in the embattled Hambach Forest, the Rheinische Post reports in a live blog. Police set up a perimeter around the forest and started ...
  • Environmental budget discussion in parliament focussed on coal exit

    The plenary debate in the German Parliament about Germany’s 2019 budget for environmental policy on 12 September centred on the country’s coal exit. Referring to the current situation in the embattled Hambach Forest, which energy company RWE wants to cut ...
  • 06 Feb 2019 |

    The main stories of Germany's Energiewende

    06 Feb 2019, 11:00 The energy transition is turning many parts of German society upside down. In this factsheet we highlight the main storylines of the generational project Energiewende as a starting point for further research. Energiewende Ruby Russell ...
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