Articles from Europe

The Germans now pay by far the highest electricity prices in the world

Rather, the new cost driver on consumers' electricity bills is network charges. In the course of the energy transition, network operators have to build reserve power plants and keep them operational, compensate market participants for line bottlenecks and erect thousands of kilometers of extra-high voltage lines. The West German electricity network operator Amprion has just doubled its investment volume for the next ten years to 24 billion euros. "The increased network usage charges and the increase in value added tax have led to this noticeable burden," says Lasse Schmid, Managing Director Energy at Check24: "The minimal reduction in the EEG surcharge cannot compensate for that."
4 Apr 2021

Now the energy transition is becoming a danger for all of Germany

The assumptions of the Ministry of Economic Affairs regarding security of supply for electricity are "partly too optimistic and partly implausible", criticize the auditors. The ministry also did not examine a scenario in which several foreseeable factors coincide that could jeopardize security of supply. So it could be that the network expansion is delayed and at the same time the cross-border transmission capacity is restricted. The Federal Ministry of Economics argues that “a stacking of various disadvantageous scenarios is not sensible according to the state of the technical discussion”. However, the examiners found this objection “not convincing”. Further uncertainties would arise from the increasing demand for electricity for the electrification of transport and for the production of the energy carrier hydrogen in electrolysis plants. The auditors therefore do not share the assumption of the federal government that electricity demand will remain more or less stable until 2030.
31 Mar 2021

Ocean life is at risk from turbines: Ramping up wind power off British coast will cause loss of marine life by 'urbanising the sea', experts warn

Melanie Austen, Professor of Ocean and Society at Plymouth University, said: ‘We’re talking about effectively urbanising the sea by introducing these structures. Introducing hard structure through cables and the turbines themselves is going to change the ecology and the ecosystem.’
21 Mar 2021

Huge solar farm sparks calls for ‘food versus fuel’ debate

Emeritus professor of the rural environment Michael Alder, who is a Fellow of the Royal Agricultural Society, said a national debate was needed on the future of the countryside – including biodiversity and landscape as well as food and fuel. “Land is finite, and whatever you use it for there are trade-offs. “Sometimes these trade-offs are acceptable and sometimes they are not. “I have a particular concern about food security – the Sunnica proposal is for land that is very productive.”
19 Mar 2021

RWE warns on profit as Texas freeze halts wind farms

Given the situation, we see this as a one-off impact and RWE may try to recoup losses from insurance,” the analysts wrote in a note. RWE said part of its onshore wind fleet in Texas had been partly out of service from Feb. 9 because of icing and grid issues that have dealt a major blow to the second-largest U.S. state.
18 Mar 2021

Height of nonsense as Lairg 2 turbines amended for third time

The renewable energy company now wants six turbines measuring 200m; one at 190m and three at 150m. Ms Herrick previously said she had been taken aback at the speed at which Energiekontor UK sought a variance to its original consent and that developers should not be allowed to continually alter plans.
16 Mar 2021

Over 230 submissions on proposed wind farm

Wicklow Uplands Council observed that the project could pose a 'significant threat to the character of this historic upland landscape'. The group expressed its support for renewable energy, but suggested that alternative and less sensitive locations could be considered. This view was echoed by a number of observations. Mountaineering Ireland and Rathdangan Local History Group also lodged submissions. The Department of Defence also lodged an objection to the proposal. They note the military lands at the Glen of Imaal are the Defence Forces' largest training and live fire range.
13 Mar 2021

EU court sticks to strict interpretation of Birds Directive in Swedish logging case

However, the wind power industry has voiced concern that the judgment could scupper plans to relax protections in order to ramp up wind farm construction. Wolfram Axthelm of German wind power association BWE told business daily Handelsblatt that the judgment would not help his sector. “Individual species protection in every planning application represents a massive hurdle,” he said.
8 Mar 2021

Failure for wind industry: ECJ strengthens bird protection

"The judgment does not help us as an industry," said Wolfram Axthelm managing director of the German Wind Energy Association (BWE) to the Handelsblatt. The challenge remains of balancing the protection of the individual birds and the protection of the population. The ball is now with the legislature in Germany. "The Environment Ministers' Conference has taken up the topic and must now come to results as quickly as possible," said Axthelm.
4 Mar 2021

Electricity costs explode in Germany; 900 million euros more than in 2019

According to figures from the Federal Network Agency in 2020, they accounted for more than three quarters of the electricity bills of private households. According to the EU statistical office Eurostat, Germany, along with Denmark and Belgium, has the highest electricity prices for household customers. ...Federal Minister of Economics Peter Altmaier from the CDU wants to relieve consumers and the economy of electricity prices with a system change in the promotion of green electricity.
28 Feb 2021

Offshore wind plans will drive up electricity prices and require ‘massive industrialization of the oceans’

“Environmentalists have not yet grasped the massive industrialization of the oceans now underway and proposed.” ...If the advisors on Biden’s climate team are serious about protecting the environment, now would be a good time for them to reconsider the massive industrialization of the oceans that is now underway. It might even make them think about preventing America’s existing fleet of nuclear reactors from being prematurely shuttered.
9 Feb 2021

‘A litany of poor planning decisions’: Impatience grows over wind energy guidelines

One of these concerns relates to the suitability of certain areas for such developments in terms of the landscape or proximity to houses and farmland, other concerns involve the size of turbines and the environmental impact assessments. Sinn Féin TD for Kildare South Patricia Ryan said there needs to be progress on the publishing of revised guidelines, as the public consultation on these finished almost a year ago.
28 Jan 2021

The day Europe’s power grid came close to a massive blackout

Large amounts of intermittent electricity create huge swings in supply which the grid has to be able to cope with. The issue isn’t confined to Europe. Australia has had teething problems in the transition to a cleaner network. Wind power was blamed for a blackout in 2016 that cut supply to 850,000 homes. The nation is looking to storage as a solution and was the first country to install a 100 megawatt megabattery in 2017.
27 Jan 2021

The day Europe’s power grid came close to a massive blackout

Large amounts of intermittent electricity create huge swings in supply which the grid has to be able to cope with. The issue isn’t confined to Europe. Australia has had teething problems in the transition to a cleaner network. Wind power was blamed for a blackout in 2016 that cut supply to 850,000 homes. The nation is looking to storage as a solution and was the first country to install a 100 megawatt megabattery in 2017.
27 Jan 2021

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