Energy industry and researchers urge German parliament to pave way for 65 percent renewables goal
Achieving a 65 percent share of renewables in power consumption by 2030, as determined by Germany’s government coalition, will require a clear regulatory framework and parallel investments in infrastructure, work on which must start as soon as possible, several representatives of Germany’s conventional and renewable energy industries as well as energy system researchers told the parliamentary committee on economic affairs and energy at a public hearing on planned changes to the country’s energy law. “The 65 percent goal is definitely achievable,” said Stefan Kapferer, head of the energy industry lobby group BDEW. He stressed that four conditions are central to its achievement: public acceptance, land consumption, grid expansion, and storage technology.
In the first nine months of 2018, the share of renewables stood at 38 percent of power consumption in Germany. Patrick Graichen, head of the energy policy think tank Agora Energiewende, said the 65 percent goal had been the cornerstone of all debates held within Germany’s coal exit commission. “Whether we look at conventional or renewable power producers, the goal is important for both to allow for adequate planning,” Graichen said, adding that this will require the annual addition of 5 gigawatts (GW) of both solar and wind power.
Harald Schwarz of the Technical University Cottbus-Senftenberg said the renewables capacity in Germany will have to at least double to over 200 GW by 2030. Schwarz added that wind and solar alone could never power Germany due to their volatile production pattern. “This means we either need a block of conventional capacity – or storage capacity. We should have started doing this a long time ago because it will take between 20 and 30 years and it is going to cost us a lot of money.”
For background, read the dossiers Onshore wind power in Germany, Offshore wind power in Germany, and the factsheet Solar power in Germany – output, business & perspectives.