Lignite now accounts for almost 42 % of total indigenous energy production. According to the German Lignite Industry Association (DEBRIV) the fuel extracted in the Rhineland area, in Lausitz, in central Germany and in the Helmstedt district was still the country‘s most important energy resource in 2014.
This was followed by renewables, with a share of some 37 %, while oil, gas and domestic coal together accounted for nearly 17 % of indigenous energy production. Over the last year home-produced fuels supplied about 30 % of Germany‘s total energy needs. The remaining 70 % had to be provided by imports, mainly of oil and gas.
In 2014 lignite accounted for 12 % of the country‘s total energy consumption. About 90 % of this output is used in power stations for electricity generation. Last year some 156 bn kWh of electricity was produced from lignite, which again means that one in every four kilowatt-hours of electricity consumed in Germany comes from this source.
Lignite‘s contribution to security of energy and electricity supplies is also appreciated by the general public: 54 % of Germans are opposed to the closure of lignite-fired power stations if this increases the country‘s dependence on Russian gas supplies or results in a rise in electricity prices. These were the findings of the latest survey conducted by the Erfurt-based opinion and market research institute Insa Consulere. And a recent study carried out by the international management consultancy Arthur D. Little confirmed that German lignite was a highly competitive player in the electricity production market and was making an important contribution to security of energy supply. (DEBRIV)