In the media: Coal debate continues, interview on fracking, study warns of energy shortages
“Protest against climate policy: Greenpeace dumps 8 tonnes of coal in front of Gabriel’s ministry”
Enivronmental group Greenpeace dumped eight tonnes of lignite coal in front of the German Economics Ministry on Thursday, protesting the continued use of lignite to fire power plants, according to a dpa report published by Spiegel Online. They are unhappy that Economics Minister Sigmar Gabriel is keeping the plants open even as the country shifts to a greater share of renewable energy in the power mix, the report said.
Read the article in German here.
“That is the price one has to pay”
ExxonMobil’s European head Gernot Kalkoffen defends his arguments for German fracking exploration in an interview in the taz. Kalkoffen says the varying opinions on fracking are “legitimate” but wants to at least have tested new fracking methods and determined the levels of potential gas in a pilot project before the technology is completely dismissed. The technique of pumping large amounts of water laced with chemicals into the ground in order to release natural gas, which is called hydraulic fracturing - or fracking, is highly controversial in Germany.
Read the article in German here.
Dow Jones Newswires
“Study/PwC warns of energy shortages after 2023”
The consultancy PriceWaterhouseCoopers has published a study showing that Germany may face shortages on its energy market as of 2023 and without further efforts it will be unable to cut C02 emissions 40% by 2020 over 1990 levels as planned, according to Dow Jones Newswires. An outlook for the Energiewende in general, the study says energy usage must be cut massively in order to meet the goals. Its author, Norbert Schwieters, recommends that heating and electricity markets be more closely connected, capacities be shared with EU neighbours, biomass be more intensively used as well as greater efforts made in the area of demand management for electricity.
“Fischedick: ‘Research accelerates climate protection’”
In an interview with Deutsche Welle, Manfred Fischedick, head of the Wuppertal Institute for Climate, Environment and Energy, says that many experts in the area of renewable energy are turning their attention to Germany as a kind of laboratory because of its Energiewende and ambitious emissions reduction targets. Germany is “10 or 15 years ahead” of other countries in terms of energy transition, he said. Fischedick spoke ahead of the annual meeting in Berlin of Europe’s largest network for renewable energy science, the Renewable Energy Research Association (FVEE).
See the article in German here.
“Gas reserves for emergencies”
Due to the uncertainties in Russia and Ukraine, the German government wants to examine whether it is necessary to build up a strategic gas reserve – that is, to require gas companies to hold clearly defined reserve levels over a period of time, according to information obtained by the Frankfurter Rundschau. The newspaper says that the Green Party fraction in parliament was told by the government that it was currently preparing a study about such a measure, which will be ready in spring 2015 and will determine its economic effects.