23 Dec 2014
Ellen Thalman

In the media: Power jam in the north, mini-power station pilots, new ideas for luring e-car buyers

“Traffic jam for power network in Schleswig Holstein”

Because the southern flank of power lines that are planned to carry electricity from Northern Germany to Bavaria in the south will not be completed for four years, power companies may have to shut down wind turbines in north sea windparks, according to the E.ON subsidiary Schleswig-Holstein-Netz AG, Henning Baethge writes in the Flensburger Tageblatt (SHZ). That could be expensive for network operators as well as for consumers, the paper says, because power that is not being produced must still be paid for.

Read the article in German here. 


Der Tagesspiegel

Guest commentary on the debate over lignite in Brandenburg

Technische Universität professor Christian von Hirschhausen writes in a commentary for Der Tagesspiegel that recent political developments in Germany show that the exit from lignite coal as a source of electricity production is already underway. Looking ahead toward 2015, policymakers need to consider the side effects of this for the future: namely, dealing with the cleanup of old open-cast mines as well as current installations, and the potential danger of landslides, which may cost the taxpayer billions of euros, he writes.


Süddeutsche Zeitung

“More Eco-power, but less biomass”

Production of solar, biogas and wind power in the large state of Bavaria increased their share of power production by 20 percent in 2013 over 2009, while the share of renewable energy in the power mix amounted to one-third (at 34.1 percent) compared to one-fourth in 2009, according to a Bavarian economics ministry report obtained by the Süddeutsche Zeitung. The report shows that the share of renewable energy in Bavaria as part of the power and heating mix is rising, while petrol and diesel are in slight decline, the newspaper says. Economics Minister Ilse Aigner commented on the importance wind power has gained, saying that it now produces 1.3 gigawatts of power in Bavaria, which: “Is considerable for a wind-weak state,” the Süddeutsche reports.


Rheinische Post

“Krefeld to be model city for mini-power stations”

An innovative project in the town of Krefeld to create a “virtual power station” – many small power producers that are centrally controlled – is part of a broad project in six communities across North Rhine-Westphalia to promote decentralised power production, writes Jens Voss of the Rheinische Post. The idea is to make such producers more efficient and more profitable by selling excess power when the market price is high, he writes. Previously, such excess power from small power stations – for example, from apartment blocks or from sport halls – would simply be lost as waste, Voss writes. The other communities are testing other models, and the pilot projects will run from 2017-2018, after which their success will be evaluated, he says.

Read the article in German here.


manager magazine Online

“The underestimated danger for German automobile producers” 

German interest in electric cars is still limited to a small group of “super-enthusiasts” and studies show that around 150,000 plug-in cars could be sold as premium products, according to an article in manager magazine. Jan Traenckner writes that buyers need to be drawn out of their “personal comfort zones” with premium marketing and privileges if E-cars are to become a mass-marketed product. Subsidies or raising the price of petrol or diesel fuel, such as other countries have done, are limited choices in Germany, he says, because people will not agree to subsidising a premium product. Instead, privileges like better parking spaces in cities or tax breaks for buyers and a publicly financed system of charging stations would be more effective, he writes. To convince German drivers, companies need marketing campaigns that feed on their desire for “cool” or technologically advanced cars.

Read the article in German here.

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