The Prime Minister of Saxony, Michael Kretschmer (CDU), has called on the federal government to be reliable when it comes to phasing out coal. The original exit date of 2038 must be adhered to, he made clear on Friday at a meeting with young employees of the energy company Leag and with trade unionists at the Boxberg power plant. Employees have the right to demand just that, he said. He stands by their side.
"We said in 2038, we do not want a renaissance of lignite now (...). We just want what is valid and now take care that new things are added," Kretschmer said, referring to the generation of renewable energy on the existing mining areas. "We need renewables because they are a locational advantage for industry." He added, however, that the option for a modern gas-fired power plant in Boxberg must also be retained.
Originally, the date set for the coal phase-out was 2038. In its coalition agreement, the traffic light coalition in Berlin had formulated to exit "ideally" by 2030.
Kretschmer recalled how the coal compromise came about. There had been at that time an agreement with participation of the trade unions, employers, churches, social associations, municipalities and environmental associations. A compromise had been worked out with great seriousness. Ecology, economy and the social issue were to be brought together. "I also think that this approach cannot be pushed aside." The Federal Republic, he said, has always succeeded in not pushing conflicts and finding compromises.
According to Kretschmer, high energy prices and doubts about the security of supply must not lead to the "gold-rush mood" in Saxony breaking off. "Energy is the Achilles heel of any economy." If you don't guarantee that, you can no longer keep companies in this country, he said. The state is still dependent on lignite. New jobs need to be created. But for this, the location conditions must also be such that one is competitive with other regions in the world.
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