At least 20 coal-fired power plants in Germany are reopened or extended closing dates to ensure the country has enough energy to get through the winter.
Germany's key power producer RWE said on September 26 that it is working to reopen three brown coal-based power plants in early October. Now the producer is waiting for approval from the government.
Affected by the Russia-Ukraine conflict, the German government planned to restart brown coal, hard coal and oil-fired power plants operated by RWE and other power companies idled or scheduled to be shut, in response to gas supply disruptions.
Since the conflict escalated in late February, Europe's energy shortage has led to a significant spike in electricity prices. Also, its huge demand for coal sent prices of the fossil fuel soaring. Compared with about $64/t at the beginning of 2021, the prices already jumped to more than $400/t this summer in Europe.
EU banned coal imports from Russia on August 10 as a sanction against Russia, but this got its fragile energy supply even worse.
Facing an energy crisis this winter, the voice fighting for green push is wilting fast. Even the country's environmentalists admit that coal is the quickest and most cost-effective answer to Germany's energy crisis.
Environment activists called for the government to ensure carbon emissions from coal burning to be offset by cutting emissions elsewhere, but the government didn't promise that. Instead, they greenlit more coal consumption to make its people and economy survive the cold winter.
(Writing by Alex Guo Editing by Harry Huo)
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