15 Jan 2018, 00:00
Julian Wettengel

North Sea wind power up 47% / Record renewables support expenses

Germany’s offshore wind power production in the North Sea in 2017 was 47 percent higher than in 2016, writes grid operator TenneT in a press release. With a record of 15.97 terawatt hours (TWh), North Sea wind made up a total of 15.9 percent of all German wind power production. “The strong increase in North Sea wind power production shows that offshore wind has become an important energy source with high reliability,” said Lex Hartman, member of TenneT’s executive board.

Read the press release in German here.

For background, read the CLEW dossier Onshore Wind Power in Germany.

Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung / TSOs

Germany spent a record 26.3 billion euros on supporting renewable energy development in 2017, reports Andreas Mihm in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, citing data released by the country’s four power transmission grid operators (TSO) on Renewable Energy Act (EEG) support. This is an increase of almost 4 percent compared to 2016, writes Mihm. According to the 2017 balance sheet compiled by the four TSOs, feed-in tariffs and market premium payments for renewable power production totalled 25.7 billion euros, and the rest were miscellaneous expenditures associated with Germany’s renewables expansion.

Read the FAZ article in German here, and find the TSOs’ 2017 balance sheet in German here.

For background, read the CLEW factsheet Balancing the books: Germany's ’green energy account’,  and the CLEW dossier The reform of the Renewable Energy Act.

Frankfurter Rundschau

Germany’s 2020 climate target is practically out of reach, and the country now needs an emergency programme to reach its 2030 targets, Andreas Kuhlmann, head of the German Energy Agency (dena), told the Frankfurter Rundschau. In their blueprint for possible future coalition negotiations, Angela Merkel’s CDU/CSU and the Social Democrats emphasise the 2030 emissions reduction target. Kuhlmann told the newspaper that CO₂ emissions from coal and gas-fired power plants needed to be halved by that time, and renewables expansion and energy efficiency measures must also be significantly increased.

Read the article in German here.

For background, read CLEW’s recent interview with the dena head, and for background on the coalition talks, read the CLEW article German party leaders agree energy policy blueprint for coalition talks and the coalition watch.

tageszeitung (taz)

With its Energiewende, Germany is a global role model, but only in terms of renewable energy development, writes Bernhard Pötter in an opinion piece for the tageszeitung (taz). “In terms of the difficult policy and economic decisions, we duck out like everyone else. Saving energy and phasing out dirty energies – that we really don’t do,” writes Pötter. Climate change had not even made it into the preamble of the coalition talks’ blueprint agreed by the CDU/CSU and the SPD on 12 January, he writes.

Find the opinion piece in German here.

For background on the coalition talks, read the CLEW article German party leaders agree energy policy blueprint for coalition talks and the coalition watch.

Handelsblatt Global

China wants to become a global maker of e-cars, “take on the hegemony of Western and Asian producers,” and German carmakers risk being bypassed “if [they] don’t take notice” of these developments, writes Handelsblatt Global. While Western companies still dominate the area of combustion technology, “Beijing recognised at an early stage that the rise of electric cars offered an opportunity to tip the balance,” writes the newspaper.

Read the article (behind paywall) in English here.

For background, read the CLEW dossier The Energiewende and German carmakers.

Funke Mediengruppe

For a successful energy transition, Germany needs a well-ordered coal exit and accelerated wind power expansion, Vattenfall’s Senior Executive Vice President Tuomo Hatakka told the Funke Mediengruppe. The next federal government must organise the phase-out in a “socially responsible” way. For now, Vattenfall does not plan on selling its large hard coal-fired power plant at Moorburg near Hamburg, said Hatakka.

Read the article in German here.

See the CLEW factsheets When will Germany finally ditch coal? and Coal in Germany for background.

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