German railway operator waives higher fees for power cables under railways – media
Tagesspiegel Background / Clean Energy Wire
German railway operator Deutsche Bahn has reportedly waved higher fees demanded from renewable project operators needing to install power cables under railway lines, Tagesspiegel Background reported. Renewable operators had accused Deutsche Bahn of slowing down the energy transition by massively overcharging for permission, increasing charges tenfold. The railway operator has now u-turned on its move to demand a percentage share of the revenue from the laying of power cables under railway lines to connect a wind farm to the power grid, according to Tagesspiegel. It now wants to retain its previous practice of charging a fixed amount to renewable project developers, the energy policy newsletter reported. More regulation was needed, said Hermann Albers, head of wind power association BWE. “The railway operator is showing understanding and is backing away from its attempt to use the expansion of renewable energy for its own financial benefit,” Albers said, adding that “the crossing of infrastructures does not lead to any value disadvantage.” BWE had said a revenue share would have called into question the economic viability of solar and wind parks.
Germany wants to fight the climate crisis and its heavy dependence on fossil fuel imports by speeding up the rollout of renewable energy with a massive overhaul of key legislation. In the “biggest energy policy reform in decades,” the coalition of Social Democrats (SPD), Greens and Free Democrats (FDP) proposed to lift the rollout of wind and solar power “to a completely new level,” aiming to free up new land for green power production, speed up permit procedures and massively increase wind and solar additions.