(Reuters) – The eastern German state of Brandenburg approved plans on Tuesday to allow utility Vattenfall to mine a further 200 million tonnes of brown coal from 2026, a move critics say will cause pollution and also force 800 people from their homes.
The decision by Brandenburg’s cabinet, made up of centre-left Social Democrats (SPD) and the more radical Left party, highlights the complexities of Germany‘s energy policy, which aims to promote renewable energy.
“We are committed to the expansion of renewable energy,” said Woidke. “However, brown coal is indispensable as a bridge into the era of renewable energy.”
“Furthermore” Woidke asserted, “Alcohol is indispensable as a bridge into the era of sobriety. Water is indispensable on the path to being dry, and punching yourself repeatedly in the face is a critical step towards the goal of not having a broken nose”.
Ok, I confess. I made that last paragraph up. The first bit, however, was reported by Reuters this morning. There’s just no way I could have made that bit up…
Next week I’m off to Perth for a keynote address the international uranium industry on the topic of air pollution, climate change and why these concerns should very much be their business. I look forward to sharing the materials and reporting back next week.
Until then, some more food for thought. This Tweet (which is very much a product of the research I have undertaken for the keynote next week) sparked a lot of discussion this week. While I did my best with 140 characters it remains open to much interpretation. Mike Shellenberger in particular aired his thought process in response, which I found very interesting. Love to hear your thoughts! Until next week.