Remunicipalisation Energy Hamburg, Germany

Description
In Hamburg, a number of public enterprises were privatized in the past. In particular, in the last decade they have been sold from fiscal policy considerations including the urban energy utilities (Hein Gas Hamburger GmbH (since 2003 E.ON Hanse), Hamburg Electricitäts -Werke AG (since 2002 Vattenfall). The new owners (Swedish government owned enterprise Vattenfall) focused on their investment in a new coal fired power station (Moorburg). Thereby the enterprise has counteracted, Hamburg’s ambitious goal to reduce its energy-related carbon dioxide emissions by 40 percent over the 1990 level by 2020. The government of Hamburg could not prevent the new coal fired power station Moorburg. As a response to that the City government founded the Hamburg Energie GmbH (TAZ 2009). The 100-percent subsidiary of the municipal water supplier in Hamburg water has the target to regain, lost energy policy influence. Since 2010 there is a movement Our Hamburg, our grid. 50,9% of the citizens voted for a remunicipalization of grid and gas in a referendum on 22nd September 2013. According to the successful referendum, the city should compete in the 2014 reallocation of concessions against the previous concessionaire bidders Vattenfall (power) and E.On (grid). The licenses will be awarded by the City of Hamburg under the supervision of the Federal Network Agency and the Federal Cartel Office to the suitable candidates. Already, in April 2012 the SPD government has approved a remunicipalisation of 25,1% of the grid for Gas (E.On), district heating (Vattenfall), and electricity (Vattenfall).

Basic Data
NameRemunicipalisation Energy Hamburg, Germany
CountryGermany
ProvinceHamburg
SiteHamburg
Accuracy of LocationLOW country/state level
Source of Conflict
Type of Conflict (1st level)Industrial and Utilities conflicts
Type of Conflict (2nd level)Other industries
Urban development conflicts
Specific CommoditiesElectricity
Coal
Project Details and Actors
Project DetailsCoal fired power station Hamburg Moorburg - 1730MW (electric), 650MW (thermic)
Project Area (in hectares)755,260
Level of Investment (in USD)3,513,560,000
Type of PopulationUrban
Potential Affected Population1,700,000
Start Date2007
Company Names or State EnterprisesVattenfall from Sweden
Relevant government actorsHamburg Parliament, Senate of Hamburg
International and Financial InstitutionsInternational Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) from United States of America
World Bank (WB)
Environmental justice organisations and other supportersNature and Biodiversity Conservation Union (Nabu), Friends of the Earth Germany (BUND), Greenpeace, Robin Wood, Climate Alliance Germany
The Conflict and the Mobilization
Intensity of Conflict (at highest level)MEDIUM (street protests, visible mobilization)
When did the mobilization beginIn REACTION to the implementation (during construction or operation)
Groups MobilizingInternational ejos
Local ejos
Local government/political parties
Neighbours/citizens/communities
Forms of MobilizationCreation of alternative reports/knowledge
Involvement of national and international NGOs
Lawsuits, court cases, judicial activism
Objections to the EIA
Street protest/marches
Boycotts of companies-products
Impacts
Environmental ImpactsVisible: Air pollution, Global warming, Surface water pollution / Decreasing water (physico-chemical, biological) quality
Potential: Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation, Noise pollution, Large-scale disturbance of hydro and geological systems
Health ImpactsVisible: Accidents
Outcome
Project StatusUnder construction
Pathways for conflict outcome / responseCourt decision (victory for environmental justice)
Application of existing regulations
New Environmental Impact Assessment/Study
Development of AlternativesFor coal fired station Hamburg Moorburg: Mix of renewable energy installations, gas fired power station, and efficiency actions

For ownership of energy supply: remunicipalisation
Do you consider this as a success?Not Sure
Why? Explain briefly.After the incident that the City of Hamburg could not prevent the coal fired power station Moorburg (2007) and other conflicts with the Swedish government owned electric utility Vattenfall the City founded the Hamburg Energie GmbH (TAZ 2009). Since 2010 there is a movement Our Hamburg, our grid. The protest against the Moorburg power station was heavily influencing the referendum on 22. September 2013, in which 50,9% of the citizens voted for a remunicipalisation of grid and gas network. Following the referendum, the city should compete in the 2014 reallocation of concessions against the previous concessionaire bidders Vattenfall (power) and E.On (grid). Also with regards to the coal fired power station Hamburg Moorburg, environmental justice organisations have won several lawsuits trying to prevent the worst environmental damage. For example Friend of the Earth has successfully sued Vattenfall because of abstraction of coolingwater from the Elbe River.
Sources and Materials
Legislations

Federal Emission Control Act, EU Water Directive

References

Arrhenius _2007_ Moorburg Alternatives Summary.pdf
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Links

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Media Links

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Meta Information
ContributorGabriel Weber
Last update24/06/2014
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