“Torn between”

In Immerath, an entire village including the "cathedral" recently had to give way to lignite mining. The phasing out of open-cast mining has been discussed for some time now. Bishop Wolfgang Ipolt of Gorlitz has two hearts beating in his chest in this regard.

Ipolt warns against a hasty exit from lignite coal. "This must be done responsibly," he told the Internet portal katholisch on Thursday.de. "We must take a new path with a sense of proportion and take the people here in Lusatia with us," demanded the bishop of the diocese of Gorlitz. On his territory there are numerous opencast mines where lignite is extracted.

Ipolt admitted that he was "torn" on the ie. He was aware that "we are living in the time of the energy turnaround. Hopefully, lignite will eventually no longer be needed". At present, however, it is still needed, also because "thousands of people have found work in coal".

Driving forward the development of different forms of energy

At the same time, Ipolt spoke out in favor of promoting the development of different forms of energy. "I am also very much in favor of the cleanest form of energy being sought and found."The church is in favor of "ecologically sustainable energy production," the bishop emphasized, citing Pope Francis' environmental letter "Laudato si.".

But the change must be shaped "with understanding for those affected: the residents of Lusatia, who may have to make way for the coal, and with the people who earn their living in the coal". This is not an easy task, which he does not envy the politicians and other decision-makers, said Ipolt.

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