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German Jan-Sept power sector CO2 emissions down 22% on year: BDEW


Power plants emitted 36 million mt less CO2 as coal shrinks

Sector on track for 47% cut over 1990 vs 40% target for 2020

Climate focus shifts to transport-sector emissions: BDEW

London — Germany's power sector emitted 36 million mt less CO2 in the first three quarters of 2020, down 22% on year, energy industry association BDEW said Oct. 12 based on its estimates.

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Coal falling to record lows already caused an "unparalleled" drop in CO2 emissions in 2019, down 17% on year to 284 million mt with the sector already meeting the 40% cut over 1990 climate target.

Based on normal seasonal trends, power sector emissions will end 2020 with a 47% cut over 1990, the BDEW estimates with coal's share in the power mix falling to 21% in January-September.

"No other sector has achieved such deep cuts in CO2 emissions over recent years as the power sector," BDEW managing director Kerstin Andreae said, acknowledging that further efforts were needed to achieve the 55% cut target by 2030.

"However, other sectors also need to contribute," the BDEW chief added with focus shifting to transport emissions that have barely fallen compared with 1990.

Germany's energy industry was ready to supply the necessary charging infrastructure to allow for a mass roll-out of electro-mobility, adding that heating also offered potential for further cuts despite a 42% reduction over 1990, the BDEW said.

German power mix 2020

Q1-Q3 (TWh)
on yr chg (TWh)
on yr chg (%)
Lignite coal
Hard coal

Source: BDEW (preliminary data)

There was a similar trend across Europe's big five markets with falling demand due to the coronavirus crisis somewhat offset by extended maintenance at French nuclear power plants, while rising renewables reduced power sector emissions, data analyzed by S&P Global Platts show.