1. Skip to content
  2. Skip to main menu
  3. Skip to more DW sites

Man against machine: Defying a giant

January 29, 2022

Eckardt Heukamp is refusing to budge: He's the last remaining resident of Lützerath in North Rhine-Westphalia, situated on the edge of a huge open-cast lignite mine. The energy giant RWE wants to dig, but Heukamp is digging in his heels.


The other residents of Lützerath accepted RWE's compensation offer and moved away. Only Heukamp refused to go and continues to run his farm on the edge of the lignite mine. A David-and-Goliath saga that’s hit the international headlines. The farmer has even received a visit from the young icon of the environmental movement Greta Thunberg. Germany's new coalition government, which includes the Greens, wants an earlier phase-out of lignite-based electricity. A boost for farmer Heukamp, who says there’s no need to demolish his property. And in any case, he's not going anywhere. A report by Miodrag Soric.

Skip next section About the show

About the show

DW Reporter Sendungslogo

Reporter — On Location

DW’s on-the-ground reporters are always close to the action, be it covering international events or zooming in on some of the quirks of daily life. Camera always in hand, they report on the changes they see taking place in Germany, Europe and around the world.