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EU plans indicate 58% fall in coal generation by 2030: green groups

  • Author
  • Henry Edwardes Evans
  • Editor
  • Jonathan Dart
  • Commodity
  • Coal Electric Power

London — There will be around 60 GW of installed coal capacity in the EU in 2030, a fall of 58% from 143 GW now, according to Member States' draft National Energy and Climate Plans, climate campaign groups CAN Europe and Sandbag said Wednesday.

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While eight Member States have a clear commitment to phase out coal over the NECP period (2021-30), 11 more show little or no coal capacity decrease from 2019 levels, the groups said in a report called "Just Transition or Just Talk?"

"Many of the Member States with no plans to move away from coal are already benefiting from various EU energy transition support schemes and are asking for increased funding," the groups said.

By 2030 the vast majority of the EU's remaining coal power capacity will be in six EU states: Poland, Germany, Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Romania and Greece.

"The European Commission must ensure that EU support provided for the just transition in the coal regions is conditional on credible and ambitious energy transition commitments by Member States," the report said.

The EU's Governance Regulation was adopted in 2018 to ensure the EU's 2030 energy and climate targets are achieved. The NECPs are a key tool in the regulation.

Draft NECPs had to be submitted to the European Commission by December 31, 2018. All drafts have now been submitted and are being assessed by the Commission.

The EC is to issue recommendations by June 30 to Member States it deems need to do more to help achieve the EU goals.

Member States then have until the end of 2019 to submit final NECPs, taking into account the Commission's recommendations.

In 2018, Europe's coal plants released 625 million mt of CO2, accounting for nearly 15% of the EU's total greenhouse gas emissions. The EU road transport sector was responsible for 21% of EU GHG emissions.

According to German climate science and policy institute Climate Analytics, to fulfil the Paris Agreement and limit the global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius, EU countries need to stop burning coal for electricity by 2030.

EU COAL PHASE OUTS: NECP RANKING

Rank Country NECP coal phaseout date 2019 installed capacity net GW NECP 2030 installed capacity net GW
1 France 2022 3 0
2 Ireland 2025 0.9 0
3 Italy 2025 8.1 0
4 Netherlands 2029 4.8 0
5 Finland 2029 2 0
6 Portugal 2030 1.9 0
7 Denmark 2030 2.6 0
8 Austria Vague 0.6 0
9 UK -- 11.6 0
10 Sweden -- 0.1 0
11 Spain -- 9.4 0-1.2*
12 Hungary -- 1 0.2
13 Croatia -- 0.3 0.2
14 Slovakia -- 0.6 0.6
15 Slovenia -- 1 1
16 Greece -- 4.1 2.7
17 Romania -- 5.5 3.2
18 Bulgaria -- 4.7 4.7
19 Czechia -- 9.2 7.2
20 Germany -- 44.4 17
21 Poland -- 26.9 22.9

* Spain's coal capacity is provided as a range in the NECP for 2030
Belgium, Cyprus, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, and Malta are coal-free with no plans to build
Source: CAN Europe

-- Henry Edwardes-Evans, henry.edwardes-evans@spglobal.com

-- Edited by Jonathan Dart, newsdesk@spglobal.com