|Business areas||Conventional power generation (lignite) and nuclear power|
|Facts about the company||Around one quarter of Germany’s electricity comes from lignite, making it the biggest native energy source. In addition to nuclear power, lignite is a reliable cornerstone of a modern electricity supply.
|Sites||Essen, Cologne, Germany (headquarters)
Sites in the Rhenish coalfields
Who we are
An overview of the company
Reliable and flexible provider of an affordable, secure energy supply
The conversion of sunshine and wind into electricity requires a long process, in which conventional energy sources must form the foundation for the expansion of renewable energy sources. An energy mix will therefore still be required for the upcoming decades – and lignite plays a decisive role in this, guaranteeing a reliable electricity supply around the clock, regardless of the weather. It is safe, efficient and cheap.
As the only native energy source, it is available in large quantities, is not associated with any transport risks or subsidies and is available at competitive prices. Around half of the lignite used to generate power in Germany comes from the Rhenish coalfields. This region is home to the largest coherent lignite deposit in Europe, with a total of around 35 billion tonnes of commercially extractable lignite. Existing mining rights will secure the supply until 2045. Every year, RWE Power extracts just under 100 million tonnes of this valuable commodity and employs over 10,000 people on sites totalling around 9,000 hectares. A small amount of the raw coal is used to produce briquettes, pulverised lignite, fluidised-bed lignite and coke for use in households and in industry. Around 90 % is converted into electricity on-site.
It provides a good 70 billion kilowatt-hours of power per year – around 12 % of Germany’s total electricity requirement. In this way, Rhenish lignite is making a vital contribution to the energy transition.
Its conversion into electricity in cutting-edge power plants operating around the clock means it is able to balance out the fluctuations in feed-in and weather-related supply interruptions from solar and wind power – as a smart, flexible partner to renewable energy sources.
In January 2018, RWE bundled its nuclear power business within the new company, RWE Nuclear GmbH. One of the reasons for this change was that the decommissioning of nuclear power plants will become an even bigger area of focus in the years to come. RWE Nuclear is affiliated with RWE AG as a 100% subsidiary and is managed by RWE Power.
Subsidiaries and sites