EGU24-11334, updated on 09 Mar 2024
EGU General Assembly 2024
© Author(s) 2024. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Transition towards low-carbon emissions: A Comparative Analysis between Western Macedonia (Greece) and Rhenish (Germany)

Efthimios Tagaris1, Apostolos Tranoulidis1, Rafaella-Eleni P. Sotiropoulou2, and Kostas Bithas3
Efthimios Tagaris et al.
  • 1Department of Chemical Engineering, University of Western Macedonia, Kozani, Greece (
  • 2Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Western Macedonia, Kozani, Greece
  • 3Department of Economic and Regional Development, Institute of Urban Environment and Human Resources, Panteion University of Social and Political Sciences, Athens, Greece

The transition away from fossil fuels involves management challenges since the socioeconomic prosperity of the affected areas should be assured. This study assesses the mechanisms, and the future planning of two European regions - Rhenish in Germany, and Western Macedonia in Greece – currently under decarbonization. The assessment is grounded in the application of the five EU - recommended tools, i.e., the governance tools, the sustainable employment and welfare support toolkit, the environmental rehabilitation and repurposing toolkit, the financial toolkit and the technology options toolkit. Rhenish region is targeting for lignite phase-out by 2038 whilst Western Macedonia has set a target for the completion of the transition away from lignite by 2028. The analysis carried out here has shown that both regions have adopted comprehensive strategic plans, delineated transition roadmaps, and established economic models. In particular, both regions have similar governance structures in place and have adopted comparable action plans for sustainable employment and welfare support. However, Western Macedonia faces some implementation challenges and delays in the sector of Reclamation and repurposing efforts. The financial structure of both regions is similar, with the EU and the state being the primary funding sources. Both regions are primarily considering technology options that prioritize the repurposing of power plants, the reduction of carbon emissions in energy-intensive industries, the utilization of hydrogen technologies, and non-electric carbon applications. The findings of this work will contribute to the development of viable strategies for coal transition in diverse national contexts. By thoroughly evaluating the experiences of these locations, this work aims to inform policymakers and stakeholders about effective approaches to navigate the challenges associated with decarbonization while ensuring sustained prosperity in affected areas.

How to cite: Tagaris, E., Tranoulidis, A., Sotiropoulou, R.-E. P., and Bithas, K.: Transition towards low-carbon emissions: A Comparative Analysis between Western Macedonia (Greece) and Rhenish (Germany), EGU General Assembly 2024, Vienna, Austria, 14–19 Apr 2024, EGU24-11334,, 2024.