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World How Hard Is It to Quit Coal? For Germany, 18 Years and $44 Billion

06:36  17 january  2020
06:36  17 january  2020 Source:   nytimes.com

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The 18 - year time frame shows how costly and politically complicated it is to leave the world's dirtiest fossil fuel in the ground. Germany announced on Thursday that it would spend $ 44 .5 billion to quit coal — but not for another 18 years , by 2038. The move shows how expensive it is to stop burning

Coal , the most polluting of energy sources, shows no sign of disappearing three years after the Paris agreement, when world leaders promised While coal use looks certain to eventually wane worldwide, according to the latest assessment by the International Energy Agency, it is not on track to happen

Germany announced on Thursday that it would spend $44.5 billion to quit coal — but not for another 18 years, by 2038.

a train on a railroad track with smoke coming out of it: An open-pit coal mine and power plant in Schophoven, Germany, this week.© Federico Gambarini/DPA/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images An open-pit coal mine and power plant in Schophoven, Germany, this week.

The move shows how expensive it is to stop burning the world’s dirtiest fossil fuel, despite a broad consensus that keeping coal in the ground is vital to averting a climate crisis, and how politically complicated it is.

Coal, when burned, produces huge amounts of the greenhouse gas emissions that are responsible for global warming.

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BERLIN — Germany will spend tens of billions of dollars to end its use of coal power within two decades, if a plan agreed Still, a majority of Germans have said they want their country to quit coal and uphold their commitments to the Paris Climate Cash for coal country, consumers and factories.

“You have to think that every one of those places represents a job, an income that an entire family depends on,” said Mathias Felsch, a 26- year -old whose father and grandfather both worked in the coal mines. “When you see it like that , it really is a whole lot.” Even so, for Germany , it is not nearly

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Germany doesn’t have shale gas, as the United States does, which has led to the rapid decline of coal use in America, despite President Trump’s support for coal. Germany also faces intense opposition to nuclear power. After the Fukushima disaster in 2011, that opposition prompted the government to start shutting down the country’s nuclear plants, a transition that should be complete by 2022.

The money announced Thursday is to be spent on compensating workers, companies and the four coal producing states — three in the country’s east and one in the west. It followed months of negotiations between regional officials and Chancellor Angela Merkel’s government.

“Germany, one of the strongest and most successful industry nations in the world, is taking huge steps toward leaving the fossil fuel era,” Finance Minister Olaf Scholz said at a news conference in Berlin.

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It was hard to realise the scale of the destruction Germany has a reputation of being an international climate leader. But witnessing Europe’s biggest There are people from all around the world calling on Germany to quit coal : Heiner Lütke, a farmer from Brandenburg, Germany , suffering due to severe

Uniper has said that not commissioning Dattelin-4 would cost about 100 million euros a year in lost earnings. Analysts at Bernstein think it ’s unlikely Uniper will In Germany ’s Plan to Phase Out Coal , a Big Polluter Will BenefitMerkel’s Coal Commission Wants Germany to Quit Fuel by 2038 Germany to

Germany’s timetable, though, could present challenges to the European Union’s efforts to swiftly cut its greenhouse gas emissions, as the bloc’s new leadership has announced. Countries around the world are watching how quickly the 28-country union, which, taken together is currently the third-largest emitter of planet-warming gases, can reduce its carbon footprint. Germany is the largest economy in the European Union.

Environmental organizations criticized the government plan for being too slow and for not expanding renewable energy sources quickly enough. “The majority of the necessary reductions are being pushed to the end of the 2020s,” said Christoph Bals, policy director for the environmental group Germanwatch.

Coal is at a turning point globally. Renewable energy is getting cheaper. Private investors are shying away from new projects. There is far greater awareness of the deadly particulate matter pollution that comes out of coal-fired power plants.

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Germany ’s Debate Over When to Quit Coal Is Just Getting Started. Compensation of billion will take years to work out. The lignite coal -fired power plant operated by Vattenfall in The task of winding down Germany ’s coal industry is only just beginning, with Chancellor Angela Merkel and the

Germany could end electricity generation from coal in 2035, three years earlier than planned, under "We are the first country to make a binding decision to quit nuclear and coal ," environment On top of climate and energy supply challenges, Germany must also wrestle with the social consequences for

Yet coal remains ascendant in some parts of the world, in part because it has been the go-to fuel for so long, it employs millions of people globally, and because the industry often enjoys robust political backing.

Eastern European countries, particularly Poland and the Czech Republic, still rely heavily on coal. The European Union this week created a €100 billion fund to aid their transition to cleaner fuels.

The Asia-Pacific is where coal continues to grow. China, which consumes half of the world’s coal, continues to build more coal plants at home and abroad. According to the International Energy Agency, China’s domestic coal demand is projected to keep growing for at least the next two years, before it levels off. China’s coal expansion puts its own climate targets at risk, though, according to a recent study partly written by the government-backed Energy Research Institute.

Not least, China’s ambitious global infrastructure building drive knows as the Belt and Road Initiative includes at least 63 coal-fired power plants.

India also continues to rely on coal. It has recently relaxed rules to encourage foreign investment in the Indian coal mining sector, and has been in talks to import metallurgical coal, used to make steel, from Russia.

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Germany has agreed to compensation of about 40 billion euros ( billion ) for affected regions The loss of energy caused by the coal exit should be offset by adding natural gas-powered capacity at existing plants, for example at Jaenschwalde in Brandenburg, the spokesman said. Late last year

Germany is under pressure to clarify how it plans to accelerate its "energy transition" away from fossil fuels and "We are the first country to make a binding decision to quit nuclear and coal On top of climate and energy supply challenges, Germany must also wrestle with the social consequences for

And even as it reels from wildfires made more intense by climate change, Australia, one of the world’s biggest coal exporters, is digging for more, encouraged in part by the growing Asian market. Among the most contentious projects is a new $2 billion coal mine in the country’s northeast.

The German plan says lignite, also known as brown coal — which is abundant, cheap and dirty — could be phased out by 2035, depending on the progress made in the coming years.

Germany shuttered its last hard-coal mine in December, but has continued to burn lignite. In the third quarter of 2019, about 42 percent of the country’s energy came from renewables, 28 percent from coal and 14 percent from nuclear.

Some of the country’s richest coal regions are in states in the former Communist East, where the industry is a key provider of jobs. Leaders in the region had been reluctant to shut down coal production without pledges of economic investment to compensate for the loss of income.

As part of the plan, energy providers in all of Germany will receive $4.8 billion over the course of the next 15 years in compensation for shuttering their coal-burning plants, some of which will be replaced by natural gas-burning generators. The plan foresees taking 19 coal-burning power plants offline in the coming decade, beginning with the dirtiest plants later this year.

Further investment includes setting up research institutes in the east for medicine and hydrogen power and retraining for miners and other workers in the industry.

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6 killed in Germany shooting, suspect arrested .
BERLIN (AP) — Six people have been killed and several were injured in a shooting in the southwestern German town of Rot am See, police said Friday. A suspect was arrested shortly after the shooting, which took place at 12:45 p.m. (1145 GMT) Friday near the town's train station, police said. They said no other suspects are believed to be at large. “According to my information, there were six dead and several injured,” Aalen police spokesman Rudolf Biehlmaier told German broadcaster n-tv.“We are working on the assumption that this was a single attacker,” he said.

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