Brunsbüttel Power Station

From Global Energy Monitor

Brunsbüttel Power Station (SWS) was a proposed coal-fired power plant to be built by SüdWestStrom Kraftwerk GmbH & Co. KG (SWS) beside the decommissioned nuclear power station Brunsbüttel, in the state of Schleswig-Holstein, Germany, and was planned to have an installed capacity of 1800 megawatts (MW) (two units with 900 MW each). It would have been the largest hard coal-fired power station in Europe.[1][2]


The undated satellite photo below shows the site of the decomissioned nuclear power station where the new coal plant would have been built.

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SüdWestStrom is a consortium of more than 60 German and Swiss municipal energy suppliers. In January 2007 SüdwestStrom announced that it proposed to build one or two 800 MW or 1,000 MW units in partnership with Iberdrola. Iberdrola, Power in Europe, an energy trade newsletter reported, "is to build and operate, and take a stake in the station assuming the project goes ahead." The initial proposal was for two 800 MW units. After the announcement of the project, the Swiss company Rätia Energie (now Repower) entered into an agreement with SüdWestStrom giving it the option of participating in all new power station projects of its partner. Rätia Energie decided to participate in Brunsbüttel.[3]

Inititally the power station should have been online in 2014. In the end of 2010 the investment decision was put on hold. However, SWS did not stop the permit procedure. The German environmental organisations Deutsche Umwelthilfe (DUH) and Friends of the Earth (BUND) filed claims against all partial licenses. Campaigns against the projected plans were initiated in Brunsbüttel itself, but also in municipalities all over Germany and in Switzerland. This led to more and more investors dropping out of the Brunsbüttel project. In spring 2012 the major shareholder, the Swiss utility Repower pulled out of the project.[2][1][4]

In July 2012, SüdWestStrom decided to cancel its Brunsbüttel project. Project plans had grown to a 1,800 MW coal-fired power plant expected to be operational by 2017, with investment estimated at €3.2bn. SWS reportedly cancelled the project due to the rejection of the project by the Schleswig-Holstein government, the lack of federal law on the future of fossil fuel generation, and the economic crisis that reduced the project profitability.[5][1]

Articles and Resources


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 SüdWestStrom baut kein Kohlekraftwerk in Brunsbüttel, SWS press release, 19 July 2012, accessed on 19 September 2014.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Nach Aus für Kohlekraftwerk in Brunsbüttel: Umweltverbände fordern Rückgabe erteilter Genehmigungen, Press release by DUH und BUND Schleswig-Holstein, 20 July 2012, accessed on 19 September 2014.
  3. "PiE’s new power plant project tracker – April 2008", Power in Europe, Issue 523, April 7, 2008, page 19.
  4. Germany's largest coal plant project falls, Climate-Alliance Germany press release, 20 July 2012, accessed 10 November 2014.
  5. "SüdWestStrom cancels its 1,800 MW coal plant project," Enerdata, July 23, 2012.

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