Germany plans to shut down all of its coal-fired power plants by 2038 at the latest according to a government appointed commission.
The commission confirmed on Saturday morning that plants would be shut down as part of an accelerated phasing-out of the non-renewable fuel.
It is a central prat of Germany’s plans to move into entirely renewable energy, which accounted for more than 40 per cent of the energy usage last year, beating coal for the first time.
The coal commission finalised the proposal after more than 20 hours of talks. They will serve as a guidline for the government as it makes the move away from coal into law.
The body agreed a total of €40bn (£26.2bn) should be provided for regions affected by the phase-out of coal, €20bn less than was asked for.
The first step will involve plant operators including RWE, Uniper, EnBW and Vattenfall, shutting down around 12.7 gigawatts of capacity by 2022, equivalent to about 24 large power station units, according to Reuters.
“The commission recommends a mutual agreement with the operators on a contractual basis with regard to the shutdown,” the report said, which added it would come to an agreement on compensation size, including with plants that are not up and running or built yet.
If implemented it would be the second major intervention in the energy market that Gemany has undertaken within a decade after a decision to close all nuclear plants by 2022 in the wake of Japan’s Fukishima disaster of 2011.
The 2038 date for coal to be phased out is in line with broad estimates but it’s possible it could be completed by 2035, according to the report, which added it would decide if 2032 was feasible at a later date.