A review of solid fuel power plants in the EU. The studies examined the main technical and environmental parameters as well as the foreseeable life span of the power plants, and evaluated the needs for renovation activities. Total efficiency values can be ≥24-27% for non-EU coal-fired units, while they may exceed 42% in the EU-units of advanced technical design. Most of the EU coal-fired power plants apply denitrification and desulfurization measures, while only 25% of the installed capacity in the non-EU area has desulphurization equipment. Little control is exercised over NOx emissions in East European Countries. Lifetime extension measures are a economically attractive alternative for the exploitation of the remaining coal reserves and the technology improvement of the existing-coal fired plants, as well as for CO2 reduction purposes.