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German utility lobby warns of power supply security issues ahead of coal commission meeting

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Imports can't ensure German supply security: BDEW

Coal commission holds 3rd meeting Aug 23

London — German utility lobby BDEW Wednesday expressed concerns over conventional power plant availability in Germany, referring to an analysis of European supply security being presented a day before a meeting of the national coal commission.

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"Developments across Europe show that security of supply must be at the centre...Germany is part of the European single market but...we also have a national responsibility," Stefan Kapferer, chairman of the BDEW executive board and party member of liberal, pro-business FDP party, said Wednesday.

Imports from neighboring countries wouldn't be sufficient for German supply security in the coming decade BDEW said after analysing data from European grid regulator ENTSO-E. Coal and nuclear plant closures in Europe are too rapid amid a growing renewables portfolio meaning that conventional supply couldn't be provided at all times if the process were to further sped up.

The press release promoting the BDEW analysis comes just a day ahead of the country's coal commission's third plenary meeting on August 23. This summer's heatwave, with high demand and low wind output, could potentially boost voices within the commission calling for more urgent action on coal closures.

The 31 government-appointed members of the commission have been debating throughout the summer in working groups on ways how to best phase-out coal against the backdrop of media reports linking the heatwave to climate change.

--Inga Freund, Inga.Freund@spglobal.com

--Edited by James Leech, james.leech@spglobal.com