Coal addiction can be an ugly thing. Especially when you portray yourself as being a leader in saving the world’s climate (or was it just Europe’s?) and at the same time operate 10 of the 30 power plants in Europe that emit the most CO2 per hour of energy produced. When you’re Germany, in other words.

The WWF has just released its 2007 “Dirty Thirty” report, which ranks Europe’s 30 worst power stations in terms of climate-polluting emissions. Combined, so the report, these emissions account for 10% of all CO2 emissions in the EU. And Germany and the UK each have ten plants on the list, all of which are coal-fired. But the Germans weren’t satisfied with a dirty neck-to-neck finish with the British. They also managed to land six of their Dreckschleuder (filth belchers) among the list’s top ten.

Strange, isn’t it (or am I supposed to say ironic here?), the paths anti-nuke hysteria combined with unbridled energy consumption and Besserwisserei (being a know-it-all) can lead you down. Even moderate Merkelites have stepped into this trap. They can look you straight in the eye á la Bill Clinton and tell you that they will cut 20 percent of Germany’s CO2 emissions by 2020 while simultaneously building 26 new coal-burning power stations and continuing to shut down their remaining nuclear power plants in the process. And of course nobody here will be forced to cut back on energy consumption while all of this is happening, either.

And Germany patting itself on the back all the time about being such a fearless leader in environmental friendliness and niceness kind of reminds me of China sometimes. It will be easy for China to agree to cutting CO2 emissions by 10 or 20 percent one day – when it feels like doing it. They put out 10 to 20 times more emissions than everybody else does to begin with.

This report has a deeper meaning. I think that the Germans have other plans brewing here. They secretly want to get rid of the dirty thirty list altogether and begin dominating the dirty dozen list instead.

Come visit me at Observing Hermann…

Be Sociable, Share!