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German Coal Plants Back In The Money As Carbon Prices Ease

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S&P Global Platts

Germany’s coal plants are in the midst of a period of improved economic viability, with even the country’s oldest, least efficient units back in the money for 2019 as coal and carbon prices ease, S&P Global Platts data showed.

The year-ahead clean dark spread for a 45%-efficient coal plant rose to Eur8.66/MWh by market close Wednesday, the highest since 2015 and up from Eur6/MWh early November. The contract had plumbed a record low of Eur1.32/MWh in June.

Even a 35%-efficient coal plant is now back in positive territory for 2019. For December, the CDS 35% spread was pegged above Eur8/MWh, while clean spark spreads for 50%-efficient gas plants remain in loss-making territory with the gap between modern gas units and old coal units widening to almost Eur10/MWh for December, the data showed.

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