10 September 2021

German coal phase out accelerates with 2026 closure of Hannover Stöcken plant

Hannover, 10 September 2021 – Germany’s inadequate 2038 coal exit plan has left its regions and companies taking action into their own hands, with the city of Hannover today becoming the latest to announce a faster-than-planned coal exit. Municipal utility Enercity will decommission its Stöcken combined heat and power coal plant in 2026 – four years early, with the first unit potentially going offline in 2024.

The closure of Hannover’s Stöcken coal plant underlines once again that Germany’s coal exit is woefully slow and out of step with reality,” said Fabian Hübner, Europe Beyond Coal Germany campaigner. “When the new German government takes over, its first responsibility should be to bring forward the national coal phase-out to 2030, restore Germany’s reputation on climate action, and give certainty to communities and municipalities.

Germany is the only country in Europe to legislate a coal exit plan that is incompatible with the UN Paris climate agreement, since this is supposed to be completed in 2038 [2]. However, the next government elected later this month will be under intense pressure to bring the phase-out forward to 2030. The Green party has already committed to the earlier phase out, and the country’s supreme constitutional court has ruled that Germany’s climate protection measures are insufficient and must be strengthened [3].

Contacts:
Greg McNevin, Communications Director, Europe Beyond Coal
[email protected], +44 078 5252 8809

Fabian Hübner, Coal Campaigner, Europe Beyond Coal
[email protected],+49 178 633 7720

Notes:
1. A quick exit from coal sealed for the German Stöcken coal plant: https://www.enercity.de/presse/pressemitteilungen/2021/schneller-kohleausstieg-hannover
2. Germany currently plans to exit coal in 2038: https://beyond-coal.eu/2021/08/03/overview-of-national-phase-out-announcements
3. Historic German ruling says climate goals are not tough enough: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/apr/29/historic-german-ruling-says-climate-goals-not-tough-enough4. Why Europe must phase-out coal by 2030 to respect the UN Paris climate agreement: https://climateanalytics.org/briefings/coal-phase-out/

5. European countries already coal-free: Belgium (2016), Austria (2020), Sweden (2020). European countries with a coal phase out by 2025: Portugal (end-2021), France (2022), UK (2024), Hungary (2025), Italy (2025), Ireland (2025), Greece (2025). European countries with a phase out by 2030: North Macedonia (2027) Denmark (2028), Finland (mid-2029), Netherlands (end-2029), Slovakia (2030), Spain (2030). European countries with a phase out after 2030: Germany (2038).

About:
Europe Beyond Coal is an alliance of civil society groups working to catalyse the closures of coal mines and power plants, prevent the building of any new coal projects and hasten the just transition to clean, renewable energy and energy efficiency. Our groups are devoting their time, energy and resources to this independent campaign to make Europe coal free by 2030 or sooner. www.beyond-coal.eu

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