Power Generation and Structural Change: Quantifying Economic Effects of the Coal Phase-out in Germany
IWH Discussion Papers,
In the fight against global warming, the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions is a major objective. In particular, a decrease in electricity generation by coal could contribute to reducing CO2 emissions. Using a multi-region dynamic general equilibrium model, this paper studies potential economic consequences of a coal phase-out in Germany. Different regional phase-out scenarios are simulated with varying timing structures. We find that a politically induced coal phase-out would lead to an increase in the national unemployment rate by about 0.10 percentage points from 2020 to 2040, depending on the specific scenario. The effect on regional unemployment rates varies between 0.18 to 1.07 percentage points in the lignite regions. However, a faster coal phase-out can lead to a faster recovery. The coal phase-out leads to migration from German lignite regions to German non-lignite regions and reduces the labour force in the lignite regions by 10,000 people by 2040.
Klimaschutz und Kohleausstieg: Politische Strategien und Maßnahmen bis 2030 und darüber hinaus
Pao-Yu Oei et al., Klimaschutz und Kohleausstieg: Politische Strategien und Maßnahmen bis 2030 und darüber hinaus. Abschlussbericht. Climate Change 27/2019. Dessau-Roßlau: Umweltbundesamt,
The present study examines the socio-economic consequences of a climate policy-driven coal phase-out in Germany. A focus lies on the lignite industry – especially in the lignite regions. In a first step, the regions are spatially defined and described. Additional analysis is based on energy economic modelling. The model examines phase-out scenarios, which differ in the chosen criteria for the order of power plant closure (specific emissions or plant age). An input-output-model and a regional macroeconomic model build up on these phase-out pathways and examine the socio economic effects of the phase-out in the lignite regions as well as in the rest of Germany. The combination of both models offers the advantage to consider the phase-out from different perspective and hence derive different and more robust effects. The models show, on the one hand, that in an early phase-out the negative effects of structural change are visible earlier. On the other hand, recuperative effects can counteract the negative consequences according to the regional economic model.
Furthermore, the structural change creates economic opportunities. Those opportunities are primarily diversified economic activities. Case studies show significant employment potentials for the lignite regions. New jobs in renewable energies and energetic optimization of buildings can already counteract the negative employment effects associated with the investigated structural change. The study concludes, describing accompanying political instruments that can support the regions on their way to master the challenges of the up-coming structural change.
Economy in Shock – Fiscal Policy to Counteract The coronavirus pandemic is triggering a severe recession in Germany....