RWE remains committed to coal phase-out

German energy company RWE AG says it is examining whether, in view of the Russian war against Ukraine and the resulting supply problems, coal-fired power plants that have already been shut down or are scheduled for closure in the near future can be brought back to the grid. For the company, however, it was »no question that these measures will not change the fundamental decision to phase out coal.« The German government would have to decide whether the power plant units in question »will need to operate on a temporary basis and to what extent they should be used to reduce gas consumption, for example.« In total, this involves 2.7 GW of lignite-fired and 800 MW of hard-coal-fired power plant capacity.
In general, the German government’s plans to phase out coal would require the expansion of renewable energies to be accelerated, according to RWE. CEO Markus Krebber said at the company’s annual press conference on Tuesday (March 15) that RWE supports the measures recently announced by government: »We will implement every renewable project that is feasible.«
The group posted adjusted net income of €1.57 billion ($1.72 billion) last year, according to its annual report. Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) amounted to €3.65 billion ($4.00 billion), of which €889 million came from coal/nuclear energy and €2.76 billion from the »core business« of renewables. However, the onshore wind/solar segment, at €258 million ($283 million), fell far short of the previous year (€523 million). According to RWE, the main reason for this was that the »cold of the century« in Texas caused the company losses of €400 million ($439 million). For 2022, however, the company expects that »business will have returned to normal,« at an EBITDA of €650 to 850 million. RWE currently has 5.6 GW of renewable energy plants under construction worldwide.

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