08 Jul 2019, 13:33
Freja Eriksen

“Greta effect” - Demand for 100% renewable electricity contracts rises sharply

Clean Energy Wire

Demand for green electricity contracts in Germany is on the rise again after several years of shrinking interest, according to the price comparison website Verivox. In June 2019, 58 percent of German consumers chose an electricity contract that included only power from renewable sources. In the same month last year, this figure was only 33 percent, said Verivox. The portal believes the rapid rise in demand for electricity generated exclusively from renewable energy could be connected to what they call the “Greta effect” – named after the young Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg, who inspired the movement Fridays for Future. "Consumers increasingly turn to green electricity when they feel individually affected by external events. We were able to observe this after the major nuclear accident in Japan,” says Valerian Vogel, energy expert at Verivox.

Demand for contracts of electricity from renewable energy in Germany peaked in 2012, a year after the Fukushima nuclear disaster, said Verivox. That year, 78 percent of all German electricity contracts concluded were green. Since then, interest in such contracts has been falling continuously, reaching its lowest point in 2018 with an average of 32 percent of all new electricity contracts. Now there is an upward trend again,  according to Vogel, since “global warming, through Grete Thunberg, has moved more into the centre of the debate.”

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