Because of the gas crisis, the Bundestag has cleared the way for temporarily using more coal-fired power plants to generate electricity. At the same time, late Thursday evening, MPs decided to ease state aid for ailing energy companies like Uniper. As an option, a pay-as-you-go system can also be created so that gas price increases for energy suppliers can be passed on more evenly to customers. However, the Federal Government wants to prevent this instrument from having to be used.
The amendments to the law passed by the Bundestag are to be passed by the Bundesrat on Friday. They are a reaction to the severe throttling of Russian gas supplies through the Nord Stream 1 pipeline. In order to save gas, less gas is now to be used to produce electricity. Instead, coal-fired power plants are to be used for a transitional period, which are currently only available to a limited extent, are about to be shut down or are in reserve. The Federal Ministry of Economics had already announced that it would prepare the necessary ministerial regulation at the same time in order to set the so-called gas replacement reserve in motion.
The Bundestag rejected an amendment by the Union parliamentary group that aimed to extend the lifetime of nuclear power plants. The CDU and CSU had proposed that the federal government be allowed to continue running the three remaining German nuclear power plants in addition to coal-fired power plants. The FDP had recently campaigned for this – however, the Free Democrats were unable to assert themselves against the SPD and Greens in the coalition.