Security of supply and the G7: “Replacement gas reserve” – ​​The rocky road out of coal

The coal phase-out roadmap for Germany is actually set: it will be over by 2038 at the latest. Gladly sooner, ideally in 2030. Until the final end, the capacities are to be continuously reduced, power plants are to be gradually taken off the grid. A process that is already underway. Actually.

We will seethat coal consumption will probably increase in the coming weeks and months,” says Michael Kellner from the Greens MDR AKTUELL. The member of the Bundestag from Gera is Parliamentary State Secretary Climate Protection Minister Habeck.

The reason for the at least brief coal renaissance is the gas bottleneck. Gas played a key role in the German phase-out strategy from coal and nuclear power: Until sufficient renewable energies and storage options are available, short-term power gaps in the grid should be closed with the help of gas turbines. These were promoted in Germany – partly under protest from climate protectors – should be built more – and later converted to green hydrogen.

But now these plans are no longer working. “The bridge with gas has become significantly shorter,” says Kellner. As an industrial raw material and for heating, there are hardly any short-term alternatives to gas. Yes, when it comes to power generation – that’s where coal comes into play.

gas reserve” is the name of the new plan that was forged in the Ministry of Economics and Climate. It stipulates that coal-fired power plants that are taken off the grid according to the phase-out plan are kept operational. “This means that these power plants are kept in such a condition that they can quickly network and be able to produce quickly. Of course you need staff for this, but only a small team,” says Kellner.

But: Jobs in central Germany are not secured as a result. In eastern Germany, the plans only concern two lignite-fired power plants in Jänschwalde, Brandenburg. The remaining power plants for the gas replacement reserve are in West Germany, most of them hard coal power plants – because hard coal is less of a climate evil than lignite. Nevertheless, Kellner admits, the gas replacement reserve “is problematic in terms of climate policy because coal emits much more CO2 than gas”. Also hard coal.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.