News Digest Item
14 Sep 2018

Power price will determine fate of wind turbines after 20-year support period

Handelsblatt

The development of power prices in Germany will have a big impact on the lifespan of wind turbines that are more than 20 years old and therefore no longer offer the guaranteed electricity price to investors mandated by Germany’s Renewable Energy Act (EEG), Kathrin Witsch writes in the Handelsblatt. In 2021 alone, over 4,400 megawatts’ worth of windmills will lose this support, with more and more turbines turning 20 in the coming years. Several companies have announced plans to buy up old wind farms and develop business concepts for profitable operations in the future. But “like all old machines, wind farms have worn down after 20 years and need more repair and maintenance work than new installations,” she says. “The current power price of 3 cents per kilowatt hour (kWh) would hardly be enough to keep turbines operating, except for a few exceptions at very good locations,” Witsch writes, adding that power purchase agreements (PPA) are one option that could shield operators from low power prices.

Read the article in German here.

See the CLEW dossier on Onshore wind power in Germany for more information.

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