More e-cars on German roads / Is RWE dividend cut a political move?
Federal Motor Transport Authority
Number of e-cars on German roads rises to 25,502
The number of pure electric vehicles on German roads rose to 25,502 at the beginning of the year, an increase of 35 percent compared to early 2014, according to the Federal Motor Transport Authority (KBA). On 1 January, 130,365 hybrid vehicles were registered, an increase of 21 percent. The total number of passenger cars rose 1.5 percent to 45.1 million.
The government currently discusses new incentives to bolster e-car sales in Germany. It aims to increase the number of e-cars to one million by 2020, but critics believe this target is unrealistic.
Find the press release in German here.
Find a CLEW dossier on the Energiewende in transport here.
“Just in time for the buyer's premium, electric cars get more expensive”
According to Manager Magazine, some car companies have raised prices for electric cars, just as the German government is considering a buyer's premium to boost electro-mobility. Under discussion is a state-sponsored buyer's premium of 5,000 euros, to boost sales of electric cars. Peugeot and Citroën both raised the price for their small electric cars to 19,390 from 17,850 euros on 1 March, Manager Magazine writes. A spokesman for Citroën said the increase was due to higher transport costs for the vehicles and the decline of the euro against the yen, as the cars are produced in Japan, the magazine said.
Read the article in German here.
“Hardly any electric cars in the government fleet”
Only six out of 17 government ministries have more than 10 percent low-emission cars in their fleet of automobiles, writes Der Tagesspiegel, citing answers to a parliamentary query by the Green Party. That means the government is falling short of its own goals, set years ago, to have at least 10 percent electric cars or emit less than 50 grams of CO2 per kilometer, the paper says.
“Daimler and Tesla going separate ways”
A year and a half after Daimler sold its stake in Tesla, the companies’ joint projects are also coming to an end, said Harald Kröger, head of development for electric cars at Mercedes, according to a dpa report published in the Sueddeutsche Zeitung. There are no plans for further cooperation and the companies will go their separate ways, he said.
Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung
“Electricity in Germany seen more expensive”
In towns across Germany, the price of power is rising, according the Internet price comparison portal Verivox, writes the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. Despite the fact that the price of power on the market is cheaper than ever, 230 out of 800 power suppliers have either announced or introduced higher prices, affecting 15.1 million households. The average rise was 2.9 percent, according to the article. Among the large suppliers, Vattenfall has said it would raise prices in Hamburg and Berlin on 1 April. Suppliers have said the price rises are due to a rise in the renewables surcharge and higher network fees.
Read a CLEW factsheet about household electricity prices here.
Read a CLEW dossier about costs and prices related to the Energiewende here.
RWE’s decision to slash its dividend this year is an “affront” to its shareholding municipalities, writes Frank Dohmen in Der Spiegel. It is a “transparent attempt” to use its financial problems to create political pressure that would secure better conditions for the company in issues like who pays for shutting down coal operations or who takes responsibility for nuclear waste over the long term, Dohmen writes.
Read a CLEW dossier about how the utilities are faring in the Energiewende here.
Read a CLEW factsheet about the German utilities here.
“The Lessons of Fukushima”
There are three lessons to be learned from Germany’s decision to exit nuclear power and focus on renewable energy after the Fukushima nuclear disaster, according to an editorial in the Rheinische Post. The first is that utilities, now suffering from their failure to adapt to the new situation, should follow the maxim: “Life punishes those who come too late". The second is that now every area affected by the political decision is in some way subsidised, and “companies are taking workers and cities hostage in order to secure state aid.” The third is that environmentalists have to be consistent – if they want clean power from wind, they also have to support new power lines to carry it from the north to the industrial south.
DeStatis Federal Statistical Office
“Energy and water supply: number of persons employed down 0.5% in December 2015”
The number of people employed in the energy and water supply sector in Germany fell by 0.5% at the end of December 2015 from December 2014, according to a press release by DeStatis, the Federal Statistical Office. Around 235,000 people were employed in the sector at the end of December. Within the sector, the number of persons employed in gas supply was up 3.6% year on year, while fewer people worked in steam and air conditioning supply (–2.4%), water supply (–1.2%), and electricity supply (–0.6%).
Read the article in English here.
“EU Environment Council: Germany and others raise voice for more ambition“
German state secretary in the environment ministry Jochen Flassbarth expressed disappointment in the lack of will among EU members to make climate targets more ambitious, at debate in the EU Council, according to the website Carbon Pulse. “Germany regrets that the European Commission proposal is weak on ambition … The Commission was also a ‘High Ambition Coalition’ member in Paris, we would like to know how they intend to stand by this commitment … We must ensure that we do not lead to watering down of the ambition so far, that would send the wrong signal,” Carbon Pulse quoted Flassbarth as saying.
Read the article in English here.