The Energy and Climate Weekly: Of dearly held coal subsidies, Chinese emissions and dependencies, organic solar cells and African wind farms
Somehow it is a bit strange with the coal mining industry. Only around 33.000 people find their livelihood in the Ruhr and Saar collieries. And yet everyone seems to be hanging on, at least in the two federal states concerned, the small Saarland and the rough North Rhine-Westphalia: the CDU, the traditional wing of the Left Party, the SPD, the Social Democrats, and the Social Democrats. Depending on party-political tastes, mining somehow seems to be the epitome of proletarian culture or the soul of an entire region.
Of course, this is nothing artificial, but has to do with social inertia. The politicians are merely picking up on a basic sentiment among the population, whose everyday culture has been shaped for generations by mining and the steel industry, and with the decline of these former pillars of German capitalism it is clear that this influence will continue to have an impact for a long time to come.