The Essen power producer Steag will put the two Saarland coal-fired power plants Bexbach and Weiher back into operation at the end of October. The Bexbach power plant will return to the market from the grid reserve on October 28th, the "sister power plant" Weiher will follow on October 31st, as Steag announced on Friday in Essen. Mathematically, the systems can supply up to four million households with electricity.
In addition, two units of the Völklingen-Fenne power plant (Saarland) and the Bergkamen power plant (North Rhine-Westphalia) will remain connected to the grid. They were originally supposed to be shut down at the end of October. According to Steag, all power plants are expected to remain in market operation until spring 2024. "As a company, we can make a significant contribution to saving natural gas in the current crisis and thus avoiding a real shortage of natural gas," said Steag boss Andreas Reichel on Friday.
The Steag power plants in Saarland and the Ruhr area, which are now returning to the market, had a total net nominal output of a good 2500 megawatts. This means that around a third of the electricity generated in gas-fired power plants in 2021 can be replaced. That corresponds to almost four percent of the amount of electricity generated nationwide in 2021. The Bexbach power plant is the largest Steag power plant in Germany. With the increased use of coal-fired power plants, gas is to be saved in view of the lack of Russian deliveries.