The lignite-fired units will be taken off grid over the four years 2016-2019 and used only as facilities of last resort. Eventually, the reserve will remove some 13% of brown coal capacity from the market. The three power plant operators will receive an average of 230 million euros per year for the shift to divide up among themselves and the move is expected to result in higher electricity bills for consumers. RWE said it would shift about 15% of its total lignite capacity of about 10,000 MW to the reserve. Vattenfall, which has total brown coal capacity of 8,000 MW in Germany, said it would move capacity from two 500 MW units to the reserve in 2018 and 2019. Environmental activists said the German government would need to switch off three times as much to hit its goals to reduce CO2 emissions by 40% by 2020 from 1990 levels.