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Coal’s comeback threatens global goals for fighting climate change


With the war in Ukraine restricting Europe’s access to Russian energy, Germany is among the nations seeking alternative fuels for generating electricity, including more coal. Russia’s war in Ukraine continues to threaten energy security, particularly for European nations. Germany, Austria and now the Netherlands are firing back up their coal power plants to limit the use of Russian natural gas, an energy source that is increasingly difficult to rely on. While coal may meet short-term supply needs, it may also impede the fight against climate change.

Vijay Vaitheeswaran is the global energy and climate innovation editor at The Economist. He wrote about how climate technologies are shaping the energy transition in The Economist’s Technology Quarterly section . And he joined “Marketplace Morning Report” host David Brancaccio to discuss the transition away from fossil fuels and the difficulties that countries like Germany are facing in this moment.

The following is an edited transcript of their conversation.

David Brancaccio: All right, you want to keep the heat and the lights on in Europe. But what does this do to Europe’s climate targets? I mean, they’d agreed to these targets .

Vijay Vaitheeswaran: You’re right. The climate ambition in Europe was perhaps the highest […]

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