EP Corporate Group Shuts Down Five Coal Units, Accelerates Transition to Sustainable Future

3. 4. 2024

The EP Corporate Group has ceased operations at five coal units as part of its commitment to a sustainable future without coal. On March 26, the remaining two units of the Slovak coal-fired  power plant Vojany (with an installed capacity of 2×110 MW) were shut down. Subsequently, on March 28, the closure of the German hard coal power plant Mehrum (690 MW) was finalized. Additionally, towards the end of March, operations ceased at the German lignite power plants Jänschwalde E and F (2×500 MW). Collectively, this marks a significant milestone in the EP Corporate Group’s journey, with a total installed capacity of 1910 MW being retired. Last year, another Slovak lignite power plant, Nováky (with a total installed capacity of 266 MW), was shut down. Additionally, the operation of the coal fired power plant Kilroot in Northern Ireland was terminated. Through these closures, the EP Corporate Group reduced coal fired capacity corresponding to more than 15 million tonnes of CO2 emissions on an annual basis. The decommissioning of these coal power plants underscores the group’s commitment to transforming towards sustainable electricity production.


The hard coal-fired Mehrum power plant, operational for 45 years, has produced in total over 120 million MWh of electricity.  Mehrum power plant was taken off the German merchant market in 2021, but was kept operational from 2022 following an emergency intervention of the German government in response to the energy crisis in Europe.


After more than 35 years of service, on March 31, blocks E and F of the Jänschwalde lignite power plant in Brandenburg near Cottbus were permanently retired.  These two blocks, each with a capacity of 500 MW, were placed in the so-called safety standby in 2019 and reconnected to the grid in September 2022 at the request of the grid operator. 

Mehrum power plant and the two units in Jänschwalde have been for decades securing power supplies for the German consumers. I would like to thank to all employees who contributed to the safe and reliable operation of these plants. It is another milestone in our long-term strategy converting our power generation portfolio to zero or low emitting sources,” says Jan Špringl, CEO of EP Power Europe and a member of the EPH Board. “We can now fully focus on developing new production sources, predominantly low or zero-emission,” added Špringl.

In Germany alone, the EPH and EP Energy Transition groups  plan to develop renewable energy projects aiming to achieve a total installed capacity more than 8,000 MW by 2030. This initiative also includes the replacement of existing critical grid production capacities with high-efficiency natural gas-fired power plants, prepared to burn hydrogen and other renewable gases. The expected total investment volume in these transformative projects is estimated at approximately 10 billion euros.


The once-largest Czechoslovak thermal power plant, which had a total installed capacity of 1320 MW, terminated it operations after 58 years of service. The operator, Slovenské elektrárne, in which EPH holds an indirect ownership interest and joint-control, has completely abandoned coal combustion and ranks among Europe’s cleanest electricity producers in terms of CO2 emissions. Slovenské elektrárne are now exploring alternative uses for the power plant area, including the construction of renewable energy sources and battery storage. The Vojany power plant has contributed significantly to the Slovak energy system, producing nearly 170 million MWh of electricity.