Activists protest against the expansion of open-pit coal mines in Germany’s Lausitz region on Aug. 23.Getty Images
By Vanessa Mock Wall Street Journal, Sept. 3 2013
The European Union prides itself as the being the world’s green crusader. It is fighting climate change with a set of ambitious targets to reduce future carbon-dioxide emissions and boost the use of renewable energy, such as solar and wind, by setting an example to the rest of the world.
But a revival of coal as an energy source across Europe is leaving a dark spot on the EU’s green credentials, according to a new report by several environmental pressure groups. Coal is the most polluting of all fossil fuels in terms of CO2 emissions. EU countries are under pressure to phase out coal as part of EU-wide goals to cut emissions and boost the development of renewable energy sources.
At the center of Europe’s coal renaissance is the region around the German-Polish border, already home to five of Europe’s most polluting coal plants, says the report, which was compiled by CAN Europe, WWF, the European Environmental Bureau, the Health and Environment Alliance and Climate Alliance Germany. Swedish power firm Vattenfall GmbH is now planning to expand the number of open-cast mines in the Lausitz area to exploit its deposits of lignite, a particularly polluting type of coal.
Read the real story on the German Energiewende or Energy Transformation. The Cinderella story is really about……coal and not wind and solar.