German utility RWE targets carbon neutrality by 2040

Source: Xinhua| 2019-10-01 00:10:28|Editor: huaxia
Video PlayerClose

BERLIN, Sept. 30 (Xinhua) -- German utility RWE aims to be carbon neutral by 2040, the company announced on Monday as part of its strategic realignment.

In order to achieve this goal within the next 20 years, RWE has acquired the renewable energy business of its German competitor E.ON as well as the green power branch of Innogy, a former subsidiary of RWE.

The acquisition was already announced in March last year and was finally cleared by the competition watchdogs at the European Commission in mid-September 2019.

RWE is set to temporarily retain its nuclear and coal-fired power plants, but will continue to dismantle and sell them in the future while simultaneously expanding renewable energy activities.

"This presents RWE with a huge task. But we have a very clear idea of how to achieve our goal," said Rolf Martin Schmitz, chief executive officer (CEO) of RWE.

Including the capacities of E.ON and innogy, RWE's renewable energy assets have an installed capacity of 9 gigawatts. A further 2.6 gigawatts are under construction and "will be completed in the near future," the company said.

The German utility company seeks to invest 1.5 billion euros (1.6 billion U.S. dollars) per year in the expansion of renewable energy power plants, such as onshore and offshore wind farms, solar energy and energy storage systems.

"Project partnerships" could further boost investment in renewables to between 2 billion euros and 3 billion euros per year, RWE said.

In addition, RWE plans to gradually phase out its coal-fired energy generation capacities. By 2030, the company is set to decrease the CO2 emissions from coal-fired energy generation by 70 percent.

According to RWE, it already reduced CO2 emissions by one third or 60 million tons between 2012 and 2018.

In the future, conventional power generation from coal is scheduled to account for only 20 percent of RWE's operational profits (EBITDA), while the share of renewable energies is to rise to 60 percent. Enditem