16 Oct 2015, 00:00
Ellen Thalman

In the media: Government mum on details of coal reserve


“Coal reserve throws up questions”

If at all possible, the German government wants to avoid using the planned  brown coal reserve as an emergency power back-up, according to the economics and energy ministry, in an answer to a Greens’ parliamentary query, the Handelsblatt writes.  “It should only be used when, despite expectations and free pricing on the power market, supply does not meet demand and no other measures are available, the government said, according to the paper. The government declined to give details on the cost of the lignite reserve or its current negotiations with coal plant operators over the planned reserve, saying this would be done transparently at the appropriate time, Handelsblatt says. The Greens said this showed the government wasn’t willing to reveal just what was being dealt out with coal companies. “The government doesn’t want to say what deals it is making with the coal companies,” Green Party politician Oliver Krischer told the Handelsblatt. “And so the billion-euro coal reserve will be had through backroom deals at the cost of power customers.”

Read the story in German here.

Read a CLEW factsheet on the coal reserve here.


Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung

“Solar energy – lucrative for the minority”

Solar panel arrays are being installed and used mainly by well-to-do private households, but financed through the renewables surcharge added to everyone else’s bills, according to a study by the RIW economics institute, the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung reports. “As private use of solar power increases, the bottom-to-top redistribution resulting from the support of renewable energy will become more pronounced. In the end, Hartz IV welfare recipients as power customers will fund the investments of better-off households in solar panels,” said Manuel Frondel of RWI (Rheinisch-Westfälisches Wirtschaftsinstitut).

Read a CLEW factsheet on the social impact of the Energiewende here.

Find out how Germans are participating in the Energiewende in a comprehensive dossier here.

Read a CLEW factsheet on citizens’ participation in the Energiewende here.



Wind and solar power production rose in September

German power production was 7 percent higher in September than a year ago, mostly due to more wind and solar power output, according to initial estimates, the German energy and water industry association BDEW said Friday. Wind energy production was more than double that of last September, while solar power production grew by 12 percent. Conventional and nuclear power output declined slightly, according to the report. In the first nine months, Germany’s solar power production had already reached that of  all of 2014, the BDEW said. Electricity prices on the forward market declined in September. Baseload power to be delivered next year dipped below 30 euros per megawatt-hour on a monthly average for the first time in 10 years. Peak-load electricity prices are close to those of 2002, according to the association. Emissions trading was almost unchanged from August at over 8 euros per tonne of CO2 on average in September.

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