Phasing out coal in the EU’s power system by 2030

A policy action plan

  • Impulse
A policy action plan

The European Climate Law has entered into effect. It obliges the EU institutions and Member States to take all necessary measures to reduce net domestic greenhouse gas emissions in Europe by at least 55 percent by 2030 based on 1990 levels. Hard coal and lignite power plants are one of the biggest greenhouse gas emitters in the EU. 16 EU Member States are already or will be coal free by 2025; however, to stay on a cost-efficient net zero pathway, coal will need to be completely out from the EU’s electricity system by 2030.

To provide a foundation for a fact-based discussion on completely phasing out coal in the EU power system, we tasked the consultancy enervis energy advisors to develop 2030 coal phase-out scenarios. These scenarios allow us to identify a suitable mix of enabling measures that phase out coal, ensure security of supply, minimise costs to consumers and avoid new fossil fuel lock-ins.

With the EU-wide coal phase-out just 9 years ahead, we took insights from the modelling to develop an action plan that we hope will guide EU and national decisions in the months to come.

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Bibliographical Data

  • Authors

    Christian Redl, Alexander Dusolt, Philipp Litz, Nga Ngo Thuy, Michaela Holl, Matthias Buck (all Agora Energiewende); Julius Ecke, Rita Kunert, Miltiadis Zervas (all enervis)

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  • Citation

    Agora Energiewende and enervis (2021): Phasing out coal in the EU’s power system by 2030. A policy action plan.

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