Energy industry calls on govt to facilitate EU state aid approval of renewables support
Clean Energy Wire
Key energy industry organisations have called on the German government to ensure that the European Commission gives the latest renewables law (EEG) reform approval based on state aid rules as soon as possible. The EEG provides the rules for feed-in payments and auctions for new renewable installations. The economy ministry must quickly provide crucial information to help the approval, said the Renewable Energy Federation (BEE). The federation had asked the Commission to speed up the approval procedure to ensure timely renewables expansion in Germany. In its reply, the Commission said the complexity of the reform from last year and the need to receive all necessary information from German authorities had to be taken into account. The missing approval means that Germany’s federal network agency (BNetzA) cannot yet publish the results of this year’s first solar PV, onshore wind and biomass auctions. “Without the publication of the winning bids, no construction start is possible,” said BEE president Simone Peter. “Without the start of construction, the supply of additional CO2-free energy cannot begin, which jeopardises expansion targets for renewables and climate targets in the long term.” Energy industry association BDEW also called on the government to push for a speedy state aid approval.
State aid approval is not the only renewables reform hold up for the German government. The deadline for key decisions on renewables expansion expired at the end of March, because talks were halted as key MPs are engulfed by a lobbying scandal. When the federal parliament agreed the latest reform of the Renewable Energy Act (EEG) – the legislation enabling the growth of renewable energy capacity – at the end of 2020, the decision on several crucial points, such as the 2030 target for renewable electricity in power consumption, was postponed to the first quarter 2021.