RWE and Dutch state in dispute over coal-fired power station plans


German energy company RWE is demanding damages from the Dutch state because of plans to phase out the use of coal in electricity generation, junior economic affairs minister Bas van ‘t Wout told MPs in a briefing on Thursday.

The Netherlands disagrees and has referred the case to the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) in Washington, Van ‘t Wout said.

The cabinet has given energy companies enough time to make the switch, the junior minister said. Nor, he said, does RWE properly support the €1.4bn damages claim.

RWE owns a coal-fired power station in the Eeenshaven in Groningen, having entered the Dutch market in 2009 with the purchase of energy company Essent. In total, the Netherlands still has three coal-fired power stations in operation.

The power stations must have made the switch to non-fossil fuels by 2030, under the government’s plans to stimulate sustainable energy production. has contacted RWE for comment.

Watch a Deutsche Welle report on the case

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