LEAG is the fourth largest power plant operator in Germany and the biggest East German energy company. With 8,000 employees LEAG is also among the biggest private employers in this area. The portfolio comprises mining, refining and generating electricity and heat from lignite. For this LEAG operates four mines, four power plants and one refining plant.
Lignite ensures one quarter of Germany’s electricity generation. It is the most important domestic energy resource, independent of imports and has stable prices. Every tenth kilowatt hour electricity in Germany is produced by a LEAG power plant. With this LEAG provides security of supply in the transitional phase of the German ‘Energiewende’. The power plants produce electricity and heat on demand at all times. Simultaneously they are able to react flexibly to the fluctuating production of renewable electricity. With billions invested the power plants’ emissions have been considerably reduced.
LEAG as a brand stands jointly for two companies: Lausitz Energie Bergbau AG responsible for mining and lignite refining and Lausitz Energie Kraftwerke AG for the power plants. The main area of operation is the Lusatian mining district – the second largest mining district in Germany.
Lausitz Energie Kraftwerke AG operates the power plant fleet. Besides the three Lusatian lignite-fired power plants Jänschwalde, Schwarze Pumpe and Boxberg this includes one unit of the Lippendorf power plant near Leipzig in the Central German mining district.
Lausitz Energie Bergbau AG is responsible for the four Lusatian opencast mines Jänschwalde, Welzow-Süd, Nochten and Reichwalde. They produce around 60 million tonnes of lignite per year to supply the power plants Jänschwalde, Schwarze Pumpe and Boxberg as well as the refining plant Schwarze Pumpe. Briquette, pulverized lignite and fluidized-bed lignite are processed from the raw material here. The lignite is transported using the company’s own central railway network, which is 360 km long.
Beside the adequate supply of lignite Lausitz Energie Bergbau AG’s goal is at the same time to reduce and limit as far as possible the impacts of mining on the environment and landscapes to the unavoidable. With timely recultivation straight after mining a safe diverse post-mining landscape is created with woodlands, fields and grasslands as well as areas for nature conservation. The opencast mine Cottbus-Nord closed as plan in 2015 is being transformed into a lake – the future Cottbuser Ostsee lake until the mid-2020s. It will be the biggest post-mining lake in Germany for now.