27 Sep 2017, 00:00
Sören Amelang Julian Wettengel

E.ON welcomes Finnish Uniper shares offer / German drone taxi in Dubai

Financial Times

Finnish power utility Fortum will launch an 8 billion takeover offer for German energy company E.ON’s fossil spin-off Uniper after Fortum has secured the agreement of its biggest shareholder and former parent company, writes Richard Milne in an article for the Financial Times. “Uniper’s management is firmly against the takeover”, writes Milne. E.ON has welcomed the offer in a press release.

Read the article (behind paywall) in English here, and find E.ON press release in English here.

Find background in the CLEW dossier Battered utilities take on start-ups in innovation race, and the factsheet Germany’s largest utilities at a glance.


Dubai, the largest city in the United Arab Emirates, has test flown the all-electric two-seater aircraft developed by German drone firm Volocopter in an ambitious bid to become the first city with flying taxis, reports Noah Browning for Reuters. Backed by carmaker Daimler, Volocopter competes with more than a dozen well-funded European and US firms, “each with its own science fiction-inspired vision for creating a new form of urban transport”. The competitors include aerospace giant Airbus; Kitty Hawk, a company backed by Google co-founder Larry Page; and Uber, according to Browning.

Read the article in English here, and find the company website here.

Find background in the dossier The energy transition and Germany’s transport sector and the factsheet Reluctant Daimler plans “radical” push into new mobility.

Frankfurter Rundschau

Negotiations on climate policy in the framework of a possible coalition between the conservative CDU/CSU, the economic liberal Free Democrats (FDP), and the Green Party will be difficult, writes Joachim Wille in an opinion piece in Frankfurter Rundschau. “Jamaica negotiations about the Energiewende 3.0 will of course be very tough”, as conservatives and Free Democrats continue to “see themselves as the agents of energy companies that have not recovered from having adapted to the energy transition too late and from the fight against a nuclear phase-out which was futile in the end”, writes Wille.

For background, read the CLEW article Leaders of Greens, FDP lock horns over energy policy as elections loom and the factsheet on coalition building: The long road to a new government coalition in Germany.


The Green Party would have the opportunity to help re-adjust Germany’s climate protection policy if it entered into a coalition with the CDU/CSU and the FDP, said Green member of the Bundestag Renate Künast in an interview with Tagesspiegel. Künast called on all parties to show willingness to be flexible with their positions. “After this election result, we have a responsibility to the whole country”, said Künast.

Read the interview in German here.

For background, read the CLEW article Leaders of Greens, FDP lock horns over energy policy as elections loom and the factsheet on coalition building: The long road to a new government coalition in Germany.

Deutsche Welle

The outcome of the general election in Germany will not substantially influence the country’s relations with the United States, as Angela Merkel is likely to remain chancellor, says Elmar Brok, Christian Democrat member of the European Parliament in an interview with Teri Schultz of Deutsche Welle. There has been and will continue to be “total disagreement” between the two countries on climate and trade policy. Even if the leadership changes, “climate change is there with or without Mrs. Merkel and Mr. Trump. It's a fact”, said Brok.

Read the interview in English here.

For all election background, read the CLEW dossier Vote2017 - German elections and the Energiewende.

World Economic Forum

Germany remains the fifth most competitive economy in the world, according to the World Economic Forum’s latest Global Competitiveness Report. “The excellent performance of its innovation and business ecosystem is particularly noteworthy: Germany’s innovation capacity and business sophistication are assessed as 5th best in the world, supported by high levels of technological readiness (8th) and high-quality infrastructure (10th)”, states the report. Switzerland, the USA, Singapore, and the Netherlands top the ranking.

Find the report in English here.

For background, read the dossier Energiewende effects on power prices, costs and industry and the factsheet What business thinks of the energy transition.


The need to protect the climate and remain profitable will continue to exert pressure on coal-fired power generation businesses, and German energy company EnBW will continue to review its power plants, EnBW’s CEO Frank Mastiaux told Handelsblatt in an interview. The Energiewende has entered a new phase. Until now, energy transition has been promoted by the government via regulations, but in the future competition, technological development, and infrastructure-related topics will set the tone, said Mastiaux.

Read the interview (behind paywall) in German here.

For background, read the dossier Battered utilities take on start-ups in innovation race.

German Institute for Economic Research (DIW)

In a new analysis, the German Institute for Economic Research (DIW) looks at how different types of renewables support regimes can effectively keep costs low for transforming the energy system. Uncertainty about future power prices is now the main risk for project developers in the renewables sector, so the the role of government support is changing, writes the DIW in a press release. The main task of government support to renewables is less and less to cover the costs of developing new technologies, but rather to help reduce price risk so that investment costs can be kept in check, writes DIW.

Find the press release here, and the analysis here (both in German).

For background, read the CLEW factsheet Germany ponders how to finance renewables expansion in the future.


The effects of lignite mining on the water supply of the Rhenish area in western Germany will be felt for another 300 years, according to an expert report by German utility RWE, writes public broadcaster WDR. RWE has allocated 165 million euros to repair damages like dried-up marshlands, lowering of the ground water level, and pollution of drinking water. Environmental organisation Friends of the Earth Germany (BUND) says this amount is not enough, writes WDR.

Read the article in German here.

For background, read the CLEW factsheet When will Germany finally ditch coal?

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