State sued over new coal power stations

The Dutch state faces legal action from a number of environmental organisations for granting licences for the construction of new coal-fired power plants, reports Monday’s Financieele Dagblad.

According to Johan Vollenbroek of the environmental consultancy Mob, the licences are against European environmental regulations.
Eon, Electrabel, RWE, Essent and Nuon all have plans to build new coal-fired power plants in the Netherlands with a combined investment of around €1bn.
The energy concerns says the new facilities are necessary to replace older and ‘dirtier’ plants and to ensure reliable and affordable electricity supplies.
But the environmental organisations say the new plants will generate an ‘enormous’ increase in CO2 emissions, reports the paper.
They cannot take action against the energy companies themselves because they are entitled to emit CO2 gases (for a price) under the EU’s emission trading system.
Instead Mob and its partners are taking action against the Dutch environment minister who they say neglected to play a coordinating role in the granting of licences for the coal-fired power stations. This, says Mob, contravenes the European guideline for Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control (IPPC)
The case will come before the highest court in the country, the Council of State.

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