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15 Feb 2022, 14:09
Benjamin Wehrmann

Eastern German state governments push ahead with ambitious renewables goals

dpa / Volksstimme

The five eastern German states want to become trailblazers in the country’s energy transition plans and greatly expand their capacity and infrastructure for renewable power production and other decarbonisation technologies, news agency dpa reports in an article carried by the newspaper Volksstimme. The new federal government plans to roughly double the share of renewable power in electricity consumption to 80 percent by 2030, and states such as north eastern Brandenburg or Saxony-Anhalt already source up to two thirds of their power from renewable power sources, especially onshore wind turbines. Brandenburg, which surrounds the national capital Berlin and is home to coal region Lusatia, plans to achieve 100 percent power production with renewables by 2030.  And coastal Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania aims to at least mathematically cover its energy demand for electricity, heating and mobility with renewables by 2035. Saxony, the most populous eastern state that relies on coal to a large extent, wants to cover at least 65 percent with renewables at the end of the decade, a far cry from its current 25 percent. Rural Thuringia also plans to speed up wind power expansion, especially by letting host municipalities decide independently where to put turbines.

The federal government’s renewable power plans need to be put into practice by state governments on the ground, with each of Germany’s 16 states using different strategies to bring down their carbon footprint. Despite being home to some of the country’s biggest coal mining regions and having a large share of voters sceptical of energy transition policies, many eastern German states have eagerly adopted renewable power installations in recent years.

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