30 Mar 2021, 13:43
Edgar Meza

New German company aims to achieve 5 GW of onshore wind by 2030

Clean Energy Wire

The Aloys Wobben Foundation (AWS), the sole shareholder of wind turbine company Enercon, and German utility EWE AG have launched the 50-50 joint venture Alterric to develop and operate onshore wind energy projects. With a total planned investment volume of some 4 billion euros by 2030, AWS and EWE aim to develop Alterric into a leading producer of green electricity in Germany and France in the coming years and also expand operations in other countries. The shareholders have brought Enercon and EWE’s existing wind farms and onshore projects into the joint venture, along with some 200 employees. At its start, Alterric already has more than 2.3 gigawatts (GW) of installed capacity and a project pipeline of more than 9.4 GW, making it the market leader in onshore wind in Germany. The joint venture aims to build more than 200 MW annually and to increase its capacity to up to 5 GW in 2030. “The transformation of the energy system is a great opportunity,” said AWS CEO Heiko Janssen. “With our combined strength, we want to grow in the onshore wind sector and, in addition, open up further application possibilities for the energy transition.” EWE CEO Stefan Dohler added, “As a society, we urgently need unbureaucratic and affordable ways to achieve climate neutrality, which as many people, companies and institutions as possible can follow.” Dohler described Alterric as more than just a sensible entrepreneurial decision by two wind energy pioneers: “It is also a signal of a renewed start and an invitation to political leaders and society to actively support the expansion of wind energy on land in a broad consensus."

Alterric began operations on March 26 after antitrust authorities approved the shareholding and investment agreement signed by AWS and EWE in December. Onshore wind power – a key component of Germany's decarbonisation plans -- has suffered from chronically low additional installations in recent years but managed a turnaround in 2020, connecting almost 50 percent more turbines to the grid than in the previous year. However, wind proponents have warned that current construction levels still fail to match climate targets and rising green power demand.

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