German Government Urged to Secure 900 MW of OW Projects Annually
Government leaders of five German states, the national wind industry representatives, and metal and electrical workers' associations have released the "Wismar Appeal", calling for further expansion of wind energy, both onshore and offshore, and changes to the reform of the Renewable Energy Act (EEG).
As part of the federal government's reform considerations to the law for the development of renewable energy, important changes need to be made to avoid jeopardizing current positive energy and economic policy developments in Germany, as well as to successfully achieve the climate change targets and implementation of the energy turnaround, it was said in the document.
Following the UN Climate Change Conference in Paris, the federal government needs to show that it wants to drive the energy turnaround forward, the signatories said. Therefore, the existing target of renewable energy share in the total electricity consumption of 40-45% in 2025 should not be taken as the ceiling.
The government was urged to secure new 2.5 GW of onshore wind and at least 900 MW of offshore wind per year.
The offshore wind energy has become an important economic, export and growth factor in Germany, currently employing around 18,000 people directly, and these jobs must be preserved and reinforced, the document said. Furthermore, the required cost reduction potential can be achieved only by providing a sufficient volume of additional construction possibilities.
A future tendering model, as well as the transition to it, should ensure the construction of two, preferably three, offshore wind farms each year, in order to secure a planning basis for companies. For this purpose, at least 900 MW each year must be allocated.
The start of a tendering model must guarantee the highest possible protection of legitimate expectations and legal certainty for those who have made considerable preliminary works to develop their projects relying on the original expansion plans, and give them a chance to realize their projects, the group behind the "Wismar Appeal" pointed out.
The transitional period should last at least four years and include several auctions.
To allow competitive tenders, the offshore wind industry also requires a flexible, yet reliable grid connection regime. It is now necessary that the transmission system operators in charge for the North Sea immediately begin working on the completion of grid connection systems for 2021 and 2022. Also, the development of the grid on land should be accelerated, the document reads.
The "Wismar Appeal", issued on the occasion of the Wind Energy Summit in Wismar, has been signed by representatives of German states of Bremen, Hamburg, Lower Saxony, Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania and Schleswig-Holstein, the Nordmetall (Employers' Association of the Metal and Electrical Industries of northern Germany), IG Metall Küste (Industrial Union of Metalworkers), and the national wind industry associations.
Offshore WIND Staff; Source: BWE