Proposed coal plants in Europe

From Global Energy Monitor

Coal plants in Europe

For a full list and map of coal plants in the European Union, go to CoalSwarm's Global Coal Plant Tracker and choose Region EU28, Map EU28 - All Countries or choose a specific country.

For a full list and map of coal plants in Europe outside the European Union, go to CoalSwarm's Global Coal Plant Tracker and choose Region non-EU Europe, Map non-EU Europe - All Countries or choose a specific country.

Schwarzenegger clause

In October 2008, the European Parliament's Environment Committee voted to support a limit on CO2 emissions for all new coal plants built in the EU after 2015. The so-called "Schwarzenegger clause" applies to all plants with a capacity over 300MW, and limits their annual CO2 emissions to a maximum of 500 grammes per kilowatt hour. The new emissions standard essentially rules out traditional coal plant technologies and mandates the use of Carbon Capture and Storage technologies. The Committee also adopted an amendment to support the financing of 12 large-scale commercial CCS demonstration projects, at a cost that could exceed €10 billion.[1][2]

Estimated cost of air pollution in Europe

A 2011 analysis by the European environment agency (EEA), 'Revealing the costs of air pollution from industrial facilities in Europe,' estimated that air pollution from industry was costing Britain £3.4bn-£9.5bn a year in health and environmental damage. When CO2 costs were included, the figure rose to £9.5bn-£15.5bn. The industrial facilities covered by the analysis included large power plants, refineries, manufacturing combustion and industrial processes, waste and certain agricultural activities. Emissions from power plants contributed the largest share of the damage costs (estimated at €66–112 billion). Other significant contributions to the overall damage costs came from production processes (€23–28 billion) and manufacturing combustion (€8–21 billion). Sectors excluded from the EEA analysis include transport, households and most agicultural activities – if these were included the cost of pollution would be even higher.

The analysis found that a small number of individual facilities cause the majority of damage costs. Three quarters of the total damage costs were caused by the emissions from just 622 industrial facilities – 6 % of the total number. The facilities with emissions associated with a high damage cost are in most cases some of the largest facilities in Europe which release the greatest amount of pollutants. Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions contribute the most to the overall damage costs, approximately €63 billion in 2009. Other air pollutants, which contribute to acid rain and can cause respiratory problems - sulphur dioxide (SO2), ammonia (NH3), particulate matter (PM10) and nitrogen oxides (NOx) - were found to cause €38-105 billion of damage a year.[3]


Articles and Resources


  1. "EU vote makes CCS ‘mandatory’ for coal power plants," Carbon Capture Journal, October 8, 2008. (Subscription required.)
  2. "Equipping power plants to store CO2 underground," European Parliament press release, October 7, 2008.
  3. "Industrial air pollution cost Europe up to €169 billion in 2009, EEA reveals" European environment agency, Nov 24, 2011.

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Europe and coal

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External Articles

Background information

Articles on Coal in Europe