Portugal’s Pego coal power plant, located approximately 150 km from Lisbon in the Tagus River area, has been in operation since 1993 and had a license to generate electricity until November 30, 2021. However, the coal stocks ran out earlier. On Friday (November 19), the power plant officially stopped its operation due to a lack of raw material, “Expresso” reports.
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Portugal. The government has promised to support the dismissed employees of the coal-fired power plant
The newspaper reminds that in January 2021, the Sines coal power plant was also shut down. This means that from November 20, coal ceased to be part of the Portuguese energy system.
According to a report by Redes Energéticas Nacionais (REN), a Portuguese energy company, in the period from January to October 2021, renewable energy sources covered 59 percent of the total. demand for domestic electricity, of which 25 percent. were hydroelectric plants, 24 percent. wind farms, 6 percent biomass, and 4 percent. photovoltaics. On the other hand, non-renewable sources accounted for 31%, of which natural gas accounted for 29%. and coal – 2 percent. The remaining 10 percent. energy was imported.
Environment Minister João Pedro Matos Fernandes announced that the government would now “protect workers’ rights”. The closure of the Pego coal-fired power plant will mean the dismissal of around 150 people. Fernandes has promised employees “social support” and the creation of new jobs in the renewable energy sector, reports the daily “Público”.
Portugal. A “fair energy transition” is needed
The environmental NGO Zero wrote that November 19 is “an historic day”. She emphasized that support should be provided to employees affected by the energy transition.
For us, this historic date when the most harmful fuel in terms of greenhouse gas emissions causing climate change is no longer used in Portugal, pending the target originally set for 2030, continues to be a warning against the need to plan ahead and ensure a just transition a country towards carbon neutrality in 2050 or hopefully sooner. It is essential to provide a framework for workers directly and indirectly affected, in addition to promoting solutions that do not jeopardize the achieved environmental benefits
– Zero organization wrote in its statement.