Energiewende

The End of the Energiewende?

Energiewende demonstration in 2014 (photo Bundjugend)

The prominent German economist Heiner Flassbeck has challenged fundamental assumptions of the Energiewende at his blog site makroskop.eu. According to Flassbeck, the former Director of Macroeconomics and Development at the UNCTAD in Geneva and a former State Secretary of Finance, a recent period of extremely low solar and wind power generation shows that Germany will never be able to rely on renewable energy, regardless of  how much new capacity … [Read more...]

Lumenaza creates regional electricity markets: “We want to connect up all 1.4 million solar PV producers in Germany with consumers locally”

Christian Chudoba

A new software platform in Germany lets utilities buy and sell “regional electricity” by connecting up small producers with consumers. Start-up Lumenaza, founded three years ago, meets a growing demand for transparency, explains CEO and founder Christian Chudoba in an exclusive interview with Energy Post. Unlike a typical virtual power plant, Lumenaza targets tiny producers such as owners of rooftop solar. Its goal is to connect up all of … [Read more...]

Payment day for nuclear addiction in France

Saint Laurent nuclear power station in Loire Valley photo Andrea Kirkby-slider

French year ahead power prices have risen sharply over the last few weeks amid worries over the reliability of EDF’s nuclear output in the coming winter. The situation in France demonstrates that nuclear power is neither as cheap nor as reliable as its proponents claim, writes Benedict de Meulemeester, Managing Director of Brussels-based E&C Consultants. According to De Meulemeester, the French market model, based on centralized power … [Read more...]

The Energiewende is running up against its limits

Prunerov coal power plant North Bohemia Czech Republic (photo Vaclav Vasku)

German transmission system operator Tennet recently announced an 80% increase in its transmission fees because of the high construction costs of new power lines to accommodate renewable energy. A study of the Düsseldorf Institute for Competition Economics found that by 2025 costs of the Energiewende could exceed €25,000 for an average four-person household. Jeffrey Michel concludes that the Energiewende is running up against its limits – but may … [Read more...]

Ukrainian crisis can be solved – with an Energiewende

protest against fossil fuels for rnewables February 2015 Kiev (photo 350.org)

A Ukrainian Energiewende could go a long way to resolving the current geopolitical crisis around the country, writes Oleg Savitsky of the National Ecological Centre of Ukraine in a new report for the Succow Stiftung. According to Savitsky, it would reduce Ukraine’s dependence on Russian gas and uranium as well as on coal from the breakaway regions, while at the same time reducing pollution, greenhouse gas emissions and the risk of a nuclear … [Read more...]

Germany sets a new solar storage record

solar installer (photo Greens MPs)

With the most photovoltaic capacity of any country in Europe, Germany has begun to store its excess solar power to enhance local usage. Last year, 41% of all new solar installations were equipped with backup batteries, a world record. Although home storage may only have a limited role to play in Germany due to a highly reliable grid, globally the German initiative could provide great benefits, for example in counterbalancing the predicted … [Read more...]

Why EU renewable energy figures are misleading: Europe requires 150% renewable energy to become fossil-free

How much renewable energy is the EU really getting? (photo Europe by Satellite)

The EU is confident it will reach its target of 20% renewable energy by 2020. But according to Martien Visser, professor at the Hanze University of Applied Sciences in Groningen (The Netherlands), this 20% is in reality more like 14%. This is because a large part of our energy consumption is simply ignored in the calculations for renewable energy. “Even with 100% renewables, we would still need a lot of fossil fuels”, Visser notes. … [Read more...]