Inden coal mine

From Global Energy Monitor

The Inden mine is a surface coal mine, operated by RWE Power near Inden, Aldenhoven, and Jülich, North Rhine–Westphalia, Germany.[1]


The satellite photo below shows the area of the mine near Inden, Aldenhoven, and Jülich, North Rhine–Westphalia, Germany.

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The Inden mine was first developed in 1957 by the brown coal and briquette works company, Roddergrube AG. Coincidentally, this company had been closely linked to RWE since 1912.[2] As early as 1959, around one million tons of lignite were being mined for the Weisweiler power station. In 1969, the mine was temporarily shut down because the coal supplies from the Zukunft-West opencast mine were sufficient. However, redevelopment of the Inden field began in 1981 as the coal reserves at Zukunft-West neared depletion.[2]

Although approved for a coalfield size of 4,500 hectares, the mine currently only operates at a size of about 1,700 hectares (17 km2).[3]

Since opening, the mine's operations have expanded eastwards. This means that on the eastern edge of the open pit, the layers above the coal are removed until it is exposed. The overburden that arises is then backfilled on the opposite side and the landscape is recultivated so that the open pit “wanders.” As the Inde River crosses the mining area, a new river bed was created that has been leading the river around the open pit to the west since the end of 2005.[4] This man-made lake, which is referred to as the “Inden Ocean” due to its size, will be left behind by the Inden mine after its planned decommissioning in 2030.[3]

Project Details

  • Operator: Rheinisch-Westfälisches Elektrizitätswerk AG (RWE) Power
  • Owner: Rheinisch-Westfälisches Elektrizitätswerk AG (RWE) Power
  • Location: Inden, Aldenhoven, and Jülich, North Rhine–Westphalia, Germany
  • GPS Coordinates: 50.875, 6.35 (exact)
  • Mine Status: Operating
  • Production: 15.517 million tons per year (2020 estimate); 13.8 (2019)[5]
  • Total Resource:
  • Total Reserves: 260 million tonnes[3]
  • Coal Type: lignite
  • Mine Size: 17km2[3]
  • Mine Type: Surface
  • Start Year: 1957; 1982
  • Retirement Year:2030 (expected)
  • Source of Financing:

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