Delaying a deal to secure the funds needed to pay for closing down Germany’s nuclear power plants would be the “worst case” for the country’s utilities, the co-chairman of a commission tasked with finding the solution said. Germany’s last nuclear plant is due to be shut down by 2022 and it is feared the 39 billion euros ($43 billion) so far set aside in provisions by the big four utilities will not be enough to cover the costs. A government-appointed commission chaired by Green ex-environment minister Juergen Trittin is trying to decide how to apportion the costs for the decommissioning of plants and the storage of nuclear waste. The commission was originally scheduled to present proposals on how to secure the funding by the end of February, but the complexity of the task has delayed talks. The last date to settle talks had been set for April 13. In a sign of the potential challenges still ahead, the commission has suggested a further meeting on April 21, a source close to the talks told Reuters on Thursday.
Reuters 7th April 2016 read more »
In 2015, the German states of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern and Schleswig-Holstein generated more renewable power than households and businesses in each state consumed. Back in 2014, I wrote about how Mecklenburg-Vorpommern (which borders the Baltic and Poland) had already reached 120 percent renewable electricity for 2013 as a whole. Essentially, the state exports quite a bit of electricity. Furthermore, the calculation is net; the state is reliant on neighboring areas at times of low wind and solar power production in particular. In 2015, the state increased its net share of renewables in power supply to 130 percent. Onshore wind made up roughly 2.6 TWh of the total of 4.9 TWh, followed by power from biomass at 2.3 GWh, PV at 1.2 TWh, and 0.6 TWh of offshore wind. Schleswig-Holstein is another German state to watch. Located along the North Sea and bordering Denmark, this state had 78 percent renewable power in 2014 – but it apparently reached 100 percent net last year. If heat and mobility are included, however, the share drops to 24 percent – much lower, but still considerably above the German average of 14 percent. Biomass made up 46 percent of this energy, followed by 44 percent wind power and 10 percent other. The state has a target of 300 percent renewables.
Renew Economy 8th April 2016 read more »