Hard cheese for hard coal

They may stop mining hard coal in Germany. The energy source that literally fueled Germany's manufacturing in the 19th and 20th Centuries will no longer come from German mines in the Ruhr Valley.

They may stop mining hard coal in Germany. The energy source that literally fueled Germany's manufacturing in the 19th and 20th Centuries will no longer come from German mines in the Ruhr Valley. The Washington Post article today points out how heavily the German underground coal mines have subsidized been for years.

So they're doing this for economic reasons, not environmental. Germany will remain a major importer of coal from cheaper sources like Australia and South Africa. So they mine coal and then ship it half-way round the world. Meanwhile Germany still surface mines a lot of lignite in its eastern section.

Germany gets over one-fourth of its electricity from nuclear power and is fourth in nuclear power generation behind only the U.S., France and Japan. Yet, most of its electricity comes from burning coal and other fossil fuels. The country is also pushing hard for more use of renewable fuels, and leads the E.U in decreasing its putput of greenhouse gases.

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