German parliament votes to phase out coal

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FILE – In this Aug. 27, 2018 file photo a bucket wheel digs for coal near the Hambach Forest near Dueren, Germany. Germany’s greenhouse gas emissions fell sharply last year, putting the country’s 2020 climate goal within reach again. The state governors Dietmar Woidke of Brandenburg, Michael Kretschmer of Saxony, Reiner Haseloff of Saxony-Anhalt and Armin Laschet of North Rhine-Westphalia meet in Berlin for the adoption by the Bundestag and Bundesrat of the laws on coal phase-out and structural strengthening in the affected federal states. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

BERLIN (AP) — Germany’s lower house of parliament has voted to pass new legislation finalizing the country’s long-awaited phase-out of coal, over objections from environmental groups the plan is not ambitious enough.

The upper house was expected to approve the plan later Friday that lays out a roadmap for phasing out coal by 2038. It also earmarks some 40 billion euros ($45 billion) to affected regions to support them with the transition.

Germany is already phasing out nuclear power by the end of 2022. The government envisions greater reliance on renewable energy and hydrogen in future, with use of natural gas increased in the interim.

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