German Court Stops Coal-Fired Plant Construction
The largest utility in Germany was forced to stop construction on a new coal-fired power plant after a local farmer complained about it to the court on environmental grounds. The court ruled that the city of Datteln, where the plant was being built, erred in allowing the E.ON AG plant to be built 500 meters from a residential area and didn’t sufficiently take into account civil and climate protection measures. The court also decided the city's plans failed to take into account prerequisites from the parliament for a sustainable use of energy.
The plant was close to completion and scheduled to begin operation in 2011. E.ON AG said it has now filed a legal complaint in an attempt to win the right to appeal the ruling.
E.ON AG is just the latest in a line of energy companies have trouble building new coal-fired plants in Germany. The Swedish company Vattenfall AB has taken the German government to an arbitration court over environmental restrictions on its coal-fired plant going up near Hamburg. Two years ago, a power company had to give up its plans to build a coal-fired plant in Ensdorf when residents rejected the change in land use for the site.
-- Suzanne Bopp