October 31, 2019 Read More →

Study: Billions in losses across European coal generation industry this year

PV Magazine:

Around 79% of the European Union’s coal power fleet runs at a loss, and will burn through €6.57 billion this year.

Economics thinktank Carbon Tracker used asset-level financial models to analyze the operating economics of every coal plant in the EU. The resulting analyst note – “Apocoalypse Now” – not only had a title to make pv magazine’s editors jealous, but exposed the idea of coal being the cheapest energy source.

Carbon Tracker analysts estimated 84% of lignite and 76% of hard coal generation capacity is operating at a loss in the political bloc, and the two forms of fossil fuel generation could lose €3.54 billion and €3.03 billion, respectively, this year. Against ‘relentless’ competition from solar and wind power, the financial case for coal is becoming incrementally worse, according to data provided by Carbon Tracker. In 2017, the report stated, ‘only’ around 46% of EU coal generators ran at a loss.

The authors sourced data from the European Network of Transmission System Operators for Electricity, and from energy transition thinktank Agora Energiewende to generate assumptions about the costs associated with coal power plants.

The coal industries most exposed to financial risk this year are in Germany (which could lose €1.97 billion), Spain (€922 million) and Czechia (€899 million), according to the study. The utilities facing the stiffest coal-related losses are Germany’s RWE (€975 million), Czech energy company EPH (€613 million) and Greece’s PPV (€596 million).

More: European coal fleet will run at a loss of €6.57bn this year

Comments are closed.