Lack of skilled workers could put Germany’s energy transition at risk
In order to achieve Germany’s ambitious energy transition targets, the pace of wind and solar power expansion is expected to quadruple in the coming years, but a lack of skilled personnel could hamper the plan, reports Kathrin Witsch in business daily Handelsblatt. The energy transition calls for millions of devices and systems -- from heat pumps to rooftop photovoltaic and energy storage systems -- to be installed, integrated and networked, but there are simply not enough skilled workers to meet the expected demand increase. According to the government, some 6 million heat pumps are to be installed across the country by 2030."In this short time window of nine years, our companies are lacking 60,000 fitters a year for this alone," said Helmut Bramann, managing director of the German Sanitation, Heating and Air Conditioning Association. “The expansion targets will not be reached due to the lack of skilled workers,” said Florian Meyer-Delpho, co-founder of PV installation platform Installion, which is expecting revenue to triple this year. The wind sector is likewise struggling with a dearth of workers, according to the article. Figures from the German Economic Institute suggest Germany is facing a total shortage of 5 million skilled workers by 2030.
Hans Peter Wollseifer, president of the German confederation of skilled crafts (ZDH), also recently said Germany would not be able to manage all of the country’s climate projects with the current workforce. Germany's new government has vowed to massively speed up the country's landmark energy transition to reach climate targets. It aims to increase the share of renewable power to 80 percent of Germany's electricity use, requiring a rapid roll-out of renewable power installations.