Power firms warn coal tax will hit electricity production
Friday 21 September 2012
Three of the Netherlands' biggest electricity generation firms have written to the cabinet negotiators Henk Kamp and Wouter Bos urging the new government to abandon plans to reintroduce a tax on coal.
The 2013 spending plans outlined by the caretaker government earlier this week included a commitment to reintroduce a tax on coal used to generate electricity.
In the letter, in the hands of Nos television, RWE, GDF and Eon say the measure is a step backwards and would not lead to a reduction in CO2 emissions. The government hopes making coal more expensive will stimulate companies to use more environment-friendly and cheaper alternatives.
The power companies also warn the measure may hit the Netherlands’ competitive position and lead to an increase in electricity imports from coal-fired power stations in Germany and eastern Europe.
The companies are also opposed to government plans to force power firms to generate a fixed percentage of electricity from biomass sources.