Germany is reactivating another coal plant to save gas

At the beginning of August 2022, the Mehrum plant in Hohenhameln was the first coal-fired plant back into operation in the country

Uniper’s Heyden 4 hard-coal-fired power plant in Petershagen near Hannover will again produce electricity for the market from 29 August 2022 and probably until 30 April 2023.

The deployment of the 875-megawatt unit is part of the plan to secure Germany’s energy supply in the coming winters. Thus, Heyden 4 could remain on the market for another year.

The envisaged operation of Heyden 4 will be restricted due to limitations on the rail transportation capacity of hard coal to the site, until additional transportation capacity becomes available.

Since mid-2021, Heyden 4 has supported the electricity system as a reserve power plant, but has not produced any electricity for the market.

At the end of 2020, Uniper had ended commercial operation of the power plant as part of its decarbonisation plan, which envisages CO2 neutrality in European electricity generation by 2035.

On 1 June 2021, the German regulator Bundesnetzagentur had certified the power plant to be ”systemically relevant” and thus necessary for the secure supply of the region. Otherwise, the power plant would have shut down permanently on 8 July 2021.

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