40 percent less CO2 by 2020?

Greenpeace study introduces new national energy concept

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Germany can achieve the climate protection goals and at the same time get out of nuclear energy earlier than planned. This is the result of a 200-page study by the environmental organization Greenpeace, about which the magazine stern reports in its current issue. Under the title "Climate Protection: Plan B", the Aachen-based institute EUtech has developed a national energy concept for the year 2020 on behalf of Greenpeace.

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According to this, Germany will be able to completely dispense with nuclear power from 2015 and still reduce its CO2 emissions by 40 percent by the year 2020. A prerequisite for this is the fact that stern quotes the study as saying that the potential of renewable energies should be exploited to a greater extent. They should cover one fifth of the heat demand by 2020 and deliver one third of the electricity volume; that alone would more than offset the loss of nuclear energy. In order to achieve this, according to the results of the study, the state would have to promote more offshore wind farms and secure exploratory drilling for the first 100 geothermal plants via guarantees.

In the future, power generation should focus more on more efficient methods. Cogeneration is to be promoted more strongly according to the "Plan B" study and thus tripled compared to today's level. This could be achieved, inter alia, by increasing the trade in pollution rights for conventional generators which are heavily polluting the environment. According to Stern, the study demands that "the construction of lignite-fired power plants will not be financially privileged".

Goal: save electricity

For consumers and the rest of the economy, the study provides for rather moderate measures. Together they should reduce their electricity consumption by 15 percent and their heat and fuel consumption by eleven percent. This should primarily be achieved through the introduction of statutory minimum standards, analogous to the planned CO2 limits for cars. display

Thus, maximum electricity consumption for all electrical appliances in households and industry are to be set by law. These measures and the expansion of highly efficient electricity and heat generation saved 37 percent of the amount of energy used, the stern quotes the Greenpeace study.

(stern, 22.03.2007 - DLO)