German wind power sector in crisis. Energiewende under further threat Cover Image

German wind power sector in crisis. Energiewende under further threat
German wind power sector in crisis. Energiewende under further threat

Author(s): Michał Kędzierski
Contributor(s): Jon Tappenden (Translator)
Subject(s): National Economy, Energy and Environmental Studies, Governance, Environmental and Energy policy, Economic development, Environmental interactions
Published by: OSW Ośrodek Studiów Wschodnich im. Marka Karpia
Keywords: Germany; energy sector; wind power sector crisis; wind power plants; climate issues; climate policy; nuclear power stations; coal power stations;
Summary/Abstract: The slowdown in expansion of onshore wind farms poses a serious threat to the German Energiewende. In 2018, wind power accounted for half of the electricity obtained from RES, and is considered the driving force behind the Energiewende. In the first half of 2019, only 81 new turbines of a combined capacity of 271 MW were connected to the grid in Germany, compared to an average annual increase in installed capacity of approximately 4500 MW from 2015 to 2017. There are problems with the system of auctions for new capacities, with the sector complaining among other things of protracted construction permit procedures, court action being taken by environmental organisations and residents, objections being raised by the Bundeswehr and Aviation Safety Agency, and laws restricting the area that can be used for construction. The crisis is having severe repercussions for companies in the German wind power sector. Some have gone bankrupt, with the workforce decreasing by approximately one fifth. The crisis in the wind power sector began at a time when climate issues were coming under greater public scrutiny, rendering the crisis a political liability due to doubt about whether the German 2030 climate policy target could be achieved. The impasse in growth of wind power could also derail plans to decommission the last nuclear power stations over the coming decade, and especially implementation of the roadmap for the gradual departure from coal.

  • Page Count: 8
  • Publication Year: 2019
  • Language: English