Eight out of ten of the largest carbon dioxide emitters are lignite-fired power plants. Seven of them are in the Federal Republic. The figures come from the Brussels organization Transport & Environment, which updated its ranking in December just in time for the climate conference in Madrid. For the first time, a container shipping company is one of the largest CO2 emitters.
# 10 Ryanair
More than 130 million passengers flew with Ryanair in 2018. With 9.9 million tons of C02, the low-cost airline is the only airline among the top ten.
# 9 Boxberg power plant
The Boxberg lignite-fired power plant in Lusatia is operated by LEAG. Plant IV of the power plant emitted a total of 10.2 million tons of carbon dioxide in 2018. The last blocks of the power plant are to be decommissioned at the end of 2038 according to the German coal phase-out plans.
# 8 MSC
Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) is a newcomer to the top ten. The company operates container shipping and offers cruises. The CO2 emissions amounted to 11 million tons.
# 7 Lippendorf power plant
The Lippendorf lignite-fired power plant near Leipzig is the next German power plant on the list with an emission of 11.7 million tons of CO2. Lippendorf is also operated by LEAG. The power plant is scheduled to go offline at the end of 2035.
# 6 Black Pump Power Plant
With an output of 11.7 million tons of CO2, the lignite-fired power station in Black Pump in Brandenburg ranks sixth on the list. Here too, LEAG is the operator. The two power plant units that went into operation in 1998 are scheduled to be shut down at the end of 2038.
# 5 Weisweiler power plant
RWE’s lignite-fired power plants in the Rhineland are operated. One of them is Weisweiler, which is to be shut down in 2029. In 2018 the power plant emitted 16.8 million tons of CO2.
# 4 Jänschwalde power plant
The days of the Jänschwalde lignite-fired power plant in Brandenburg are also numbered: the last block is to be shut down at the end of 2028. In 2018, the power plant emitted 22.8 million tons of carbon dioxide.
# 3 Niederaussem power plant
Until the end of 2038, RWE can still generate electricity in one block of its Niederaußem lignite-fired power plant. Then there is an end to the power plant, which emitted a total of 25.9 million tons of CO2 in 2018.
# 2 Neurath power plant
With an output of 32.1 million tons of CO2, the Neurath lignite-fired power plant is the largest CO2 emitter in Germany. Here, too, RWE can operate two blocks that were commissioned in 2012 until the end of 2038.
# 1 Belchatow power plant
The European leader is a brown coal power plant from Poland. With a total output of more than 5,400 megawatts, it is the world’s largest power plant of its kind. With 38.3 million tons of CO2, its emissions are higher than those of a country such as Ireland.