Germany sees surge in coal-generated power amid effort to switch off nuclear plants

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Germany sees surge in coal-generated power amid effort to switch off nuclear plants

BERLIN - The share of electricity generated from coal rose in Germany last year as the country seeks to achieve its ambitious aim of switching off all nuclear power plants by 2022.

Industry figures published Tuesday show that bituminous coal and lignite together contributed 45.5 per cent of Germany's gross energy output in 2013, up from 44 per cent the previous year.

Environmentalists criticize the increasing use of coal, saying it is a "dirty" source because of the large amount of carbon dioxide released when it is burned.

Heavily subsidized renewable sources such as wind, solar, biomass and hydropower also increased their contribution to 23.4 per cent, up from 22.8 per cent in 2012.

The share of nuclear power dropped to 15.4 per cent from 15.8 per cent.

Geographic location: Germany, BERLIN

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