Christian Hauenstein

TU Berlin

Enabling a global coal phase-out in line with international climate targets – overcoming deep incumbency

In order to limit global warming to 1.5 – 2°C, CO2-intensive coal-fired power generation will have to drop sharply within the next few years. The first initiatives and legislative projects have already been launched, but worldwide coal consumption continues to rise. A sufficient reduction will not be achieved in the next few years and decades with the current approaches, despite the fact that the international community of states agreed on the 1.5°C target in Paris.
One reason is that players in the coal sector would have to give up their previous lucrative business models involving coal production and power generation if they were to opt out of coal. Players in the coal sector and in the established energy system based on fossil fuels are taking targeted action against a rapid energy shift away from fossil fuels and towards renewables. My research focuses on the strategies and methods of the coal sector and its “allies” hindering a faster decline of coal use.

  • Coal
  • Carbon Lock-in
  • Incumbency

M.Sc. Renewable Energy Engineering and Management, Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg (2015-2018)

B.Sc. Environmental Sciences and B.Sc. International Forestry, Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg (2011-2015, 08/2013-06/2014 at Universidad de Huelva, Spain)

Hauenstein, C. / Holz, F. (2020): The U.S. Coal Sector between Shale Gas and Renewables: Last Resort Coal Exports?; DIW Berlin Discussion Paper 1880, Berlin: German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin) download

Braunger, I. / Hauenstein, C. (2020): How Incumbent Cultural and Cognitive Path Dependencies Constrain the “Scenario Cone”: Reliance on Carbon Dioxide Removal due to Techno-bias; in Economics of Energy & Environmental Policy, 9 (1), 137-145 download

Mendelevitch, R. / Hauenstein, C. / Holz, F. (2019): The death spiral of coal in the U.S.: will changes in U.S. Policy turn the tide?, in Climate Policy, 19 (10), 1310-1324download

Mendelevitch, R. / Hauenstein, C. / Holz, F. (2019): The Death Spiral of Coal in the USA: Will New U.S. Energy Policy Change the Tide?; DIW Berlin Discussion Paper 1790, Berlin: German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin) download