Fossil fuel peak forecast for 2025 / Investors eye Energiewende

Bloomberg

“The world nears peak fossil fuels for electricity”

The era of ever expanding global demand for fossil fuels to generate power comes to an end in less than a decade, according to a new forecast by Bloomberg New Energy Finance. The peak year for coal, gas and oil will be 2025, and the world is headed for another “remarkable” tipping point by 2027, writes Tom Randall in an accompanying article. “At that point, building new wind farms and solar fields will often be cheaper than running the existing coal and gas generators.”
The report also argues that electric cars arrive just in time to prevent a fall in power demand in many economies. “Take Germany, where increases in efficiency mean that without electric cars, demand for electricity would be headed toward a prolonged and destabilising decline.”

Find the article in English here.

 

Berlin Investment Forum

“Investors hope for green economic miracle”

Following the Paris Agreement, investors see much potential in spending their capital on needed energy infrastructure projects. Speaking at the Berlin Investment Forum organised by Tagesspiegel, German investor Jochen Wermuth said we were in the middle of a green "Wirtschaftswunder" (economic miracle). "Yes, you can make money and do good,” he said at the conference. But some industry representatives criticised regulatory shortcomings. “We at GE try to feel the pulse of the government, but it changes so frequently,” said GE Power Conversion CEO Stephan Reimelt, adding: “It’s a volatile environment; just storming into it is not responsible… We also have to look at quarterly earnings.” Armin Sandhövel of Allianz Global Investors GmbH said the financial industry was “not responsible for achieving the Paris climate goals.”
German state secretary Rainer Baake of the economy ministry said Germany must not allow new investment into fossil structures: "Concretely, this means no more investments into the expansion of lignite mines, no more investments into hard coal or lignite generators.”

Read an article on the conference by Tagesspiegel in German here.

 

Handelsblatt

“Nuclear Fusion meander”

The German government ploughs billions of euros of taxpayer money into the European nuclear fusion project ITER, despite constant delays and a cost explosion, writes Sylvia Kotting-Uhl, spokesperson of the Green Party parliamentary group, in a guest commentary in business daily Handelsblatt. Nuclear fusion is a money pit, because it won’t be ready before 2050 to 2060, she argues. “We will have to switch our power supply to renewables long before that date,” writes Kotting-Uhl. Germany should withdraw from the project when that becomes possible next year, and use the money to support research into “storage, power-to-x and other gaps of the Energiewende.”

 

Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung

“Utilities favour hard coal – are climate advantages of gas overestimated?”

A new study by the German Coal Importer Association says hard coal power plants as a back-up for variable renewable generation do less damage to the climate than flexible gas turbines, according to an article in Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. If all emissions are taken into account, including those caused by the production of gas, modern hard coal plants are “much more climate-friendly alternative to open gas turbines,” according to the report.

 

Süddeutsche Zeitung

“On the quiet”

Despite opposition from the EU Commission, as well as many European governments, Russian energy giant Gazprom and the German and Russian governments continue with plans to build the Nord Stream gas pipeline in the Baltic Sea, write Michael Bauchmüller and Julian Hans in Süddeutsche Zeitung. “On the quiet, the project continues. The contracts for the pipelines are made, the auctions to install them are ongoing – everything with the goodwill of the [German] federal government, despite Russia sanctions,” write Bauchmüller and Hans. They criticise that the isolated German attempts come at a time when the EU Commission is trying to build a joint EU energy union – in part to guarantee Europe’s independence.

Read the article in German here.

 

Welt Online

“The Chinese are collecting German renewables surcharge”

The Chinese economy, or more specifically its solar panel industry, has long profited from the German energy transition, writes Daniel Wetzel in Die Welt. Now state-owned China Three Gorges (CTG) will take over one of Germany’s largest offshore wind park Meerwind (288 MW) for 1.6 billion euros, according to Reuters sources. As an operator of the wind park the Chinese company will now profit from “attractive German feed-in tariffs for renewable energy”, Wetzel says.

Read the article in German here.

 

Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung

“Ship-plug is looking for engagement”

Only five cruise ships regularly docking in the port of Hamburg could technically use a new power cable supplying onshore electricity during downtime – and only one does, writes Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. The 10 million-euro project was designed to help avoid emissions from cruise ships keeping their motors running in port. However, most cruise ships are too large for the dock with the new cable and use another terminal – without onshore supply.

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