29 Sep 2016
Sören Amelang Julian Wettengel

Government supports fuel cell research / Wind sector set to swell

Transport ministry

The government cabinet approved the second phase of a programme to support hydrogen and fuel cell technology, according to a transport ministry press release. From 2016 to 2019, the programme provides almost 250 million euros to support innovations in this area. “With electric mobility, as well as automated and interconnected driving, we face the largest mobility revolution since the invention of the automobile. The fuel cell is a key technology of this development,” said transport minister Alexander Dobrindt.

Read the press release in German here.


European governments’ efforts to re-design support schemes for wind power – such as Germany’s switch from set feed-in tariffs to tenders – are “driving a rush to the market” by companies hoping to benefit from the old systems, according to a study by consultancy MAKE, writes businessGreen. Germany will lead capacity expansion with 36 gigawatts (GW) of the total of 140 GW of new wind power capacity by 2025, the authors of the study predict.

Read the article (behind paywall) in English here.

Purchase the full study here.


European wind power companies are in danger of being overrun by competitors from Asia – as was the case with the solar industry, writes Franz Hubik in an opinion piece in Handelsblatt. Research and development (R&D) efforts become more important as there is little to improve in terms of size and general functioning of wind turbines, according to Hubik: “Now, it would be time to invest in innovation. But the opposite is happening” as R&D budgets were comparably small for European companies, he writes.


Several municipal shareholders of utility RWE – among them Dortmund and Essen – will not invest in the company’s renewable subsidiary innogy at the time of its initial public offering (IPO), according to news agency Reuters. “As a provider of jobs in the region, local municipalities, which hold about 24 percent of [RWE], have an interest in its survival, making a decision to sell RWE shares to buy innogy stock difficult,” writes Reuters. The municipalities did not rule out investing later on.

Read the article in English here.

Also read the CLEW factsheet RWE’s plans for new renewable subsidiary for background.

Süddeutsche Zeitung

Utilities and the German government continue to argue about the storage of nuclear waste, five months after a government-appointed commission proposed that the country’s four nuclear power station operators should pay more than 20 billion euros into a state-administered fund to finance the endeavour, writes Michael Bauchmüller in Süddeutsche Zeitung. It has yet to be defined, for instance, at what exact point and in what condition the waste is turned over to the state. The commission had proposed that the utilities would have to fully prepare the nuclear waste for final storage before the government fund takes over, according to Bauchmüller. Government sources still believe that a solution can be found within the coming month, he writes.

Read the article in German here.

For background, read the CLEW dossier The challenges of Germany’s nuclear phase-out and the CLEW factsheet Securing utility payments for the nuclear clean-up.

German Bundestag

New legislation regarding the search for a final repository for highly radioactive waste could be drafted, decided and implemented “clearly” before next year’s summer break, said a representative of the federal environment ministry, according to a press release by the parliament (Bundestag). The ministry wants to turn proposals that the expert commission on administering the search for a final repository had published in July into first drafts by the end of 2016.

Read the press release in German here.

For background read the CLEW factsheet What to do with the nuclear waste – the storage question.

Süddeutsche Zeitung

The Paris Car show offers the opportunity to observe the creeping death of the diesel engine, write Thomas Fromm and Leo Klimm in Süddeutsche Zeitung. Carmakers are suddenly in a hurry to roll out e-cars, as the share of diesel sales decreases in Germany and France. New e-cars with larger driving ranges could kickstart lacklustre sales in Germany, according to the authors.

Read the CLEW article VW, Daimler take key step for e-mobility at Paris Car Show.

For background, read the CLEW factsheets Dieselgate forces VW to embrace green mobility and Reluctant Daimler plans “radical” push into new mobility world.

Die Welt

Intensifying regulations for energy efficiency and insulation for commercial buildings would be expensive but bring little benefit, according to a study commissioned by the German Property Federation (ZIA), writes Christian Hunziker in Die Welt. “Additional measures on the building envelope don’t help us,” said Norbert Fischer, architect and author of the study. He suggests alternative efforts such as using more energy produced with renewable sources.

Read the article in German here.

Find first results from the study in German here.

Also read the CLEW dossier The Energiewende and Efficiency.

Power plants of the mining and manufacturing sectors produced 10.4 percent of Germany’s gross electricity in 2015, with 50 terawatt hours (TWh), reports Germany's statistics agency Destatis. Most power of the industrial plants is used for self-consumption. Electricity generated from natural gas made up almost half of the total power produced by industrial plants.

Read the press release in English here and a more detailed one in German here.

All texts created by the Clean Energy Wire are available under a “Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Licence (CC BY 4.0)” . They can be copied, shared and made publicly accessible by users so long as they give appropriate credit, provide a link to the license, and indicate if changes were made.
« previous news next news »


Researching a story? Drop CLEW a line or give us a call for background material and contacts.

+49 30 700 1435 212

Journalism for the energy transition

Get our Newsletter
Join our Network
Find an interviewee