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No place for coal as RWE shelves final lignite plans

Image: Vogone.

Image: Vogone.

RWE has shelved plans for a new coal-fired power station in Germany, announcing that new coal-fired units “no longer have a place” in its strategy.

The energy giant had been due to replace existing coal-fired units at the Niederaussem power plant near the city of Bergheim with a lignite power station.

But after market conditions rendered the project unfeasible, RWE confirmed that it had shuttered it indefinitely.

And Rolf martin Schmitz, chief executive at RWE, confirmed that the company would no longer pursue coal-fired projects and instead plot a course for a renewables-centric policy.

“We are aware of our responsibility and continue to drive the energy transition with resolve. New coal-fired power stations no longer have a place in our future-oriented strategy. Following the completion of the transaction with E.ON, RWE will be one of the world’s leading renewable energy players,” he said.

However RWE fell short of completely denouncing coal, adding that it was “convinced” that existing coal-fired power stations would be needed to provide back-up capacity owing to the fact that renewables contribute around 40% of the country’s power mix.

It also confirmed that the company would continue to invest in gas-fired power stations should market conditions allow it moving forward.

Last month RWE said its proposed asset swap deal with E.On was on the “home straight”, after which the firm would establish itself as Europe’s largest renewables developer.

It confirmed it would aim to build 2-3GW of new renewable capacity each year.

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