Library filed under Energy Policy from Europe

Assessing the extent of Germany’s energy dilemma

Germans pay the highest electricity prices in Europe. Residential electricity prices, including taxes, are 60% higher in Berlin than in London, and are 40% above the euro-zone average. Germany’s energy minister, Sigmar Gabriel, recently estimated that the push to renewables is costing Germans €24 billion euros per year in higher bills. Were this to continue, Germany risked facing a “dramatic deindustrialization,” he said.
13 Feb 2014

Germany plans to raze towns for brown coal and cheap energy

But in 2011, in the wake of the disaster at Japan's Fukushima Daiichi plant, the German government reversed course and put the nuclear plants back on the chopping block. That will leave a hole in the country's energy supply that renewables can't quickly fill, meaning fossil fuels will continue to be part of the German energy mix for a while longer. Since coal is the most greenhouse-gas-intensive fuel, coal's comeback could set back Germany's efforts to combat climate change. 
11 Feb 2014

North-south divide threatens Germany's renewable energy highway

Currently, public support for Energiewende is still high but the rising cost has become a growing concern, and last month the new energy minister, Sigmar Gabriel, vowed to cut subsidies for wind, solar and other renewables ...Unless the new government manages to reconcile national priorities with the dynamics of its federal system, the mood could quickly turn against Germany's green revolution.
7 Feb 2014

European Commission to ditch legally-binding renewable energy targets

The European Commission is to ditch legally-binding renewable energy targets after 2020 in a major U-turn and admission that the policy has failed industry and consumers by driving up electricity bills. A Brussels paper on the European Union’s “2030 framework for climate and energy” will instead propose binding targets to reduce carbon emissions without imposing requirements on how the reductions are made. “It is good to see that the EU has learned the lessons of the current targets that imposed top-down renewable energy targets,” said a Government source.
23 Jan 2014

European Commission to ditch legally-binding renewable energy targets

The European Commission is to ditch legally-binding renewable energy targets after 2020 in a major U-turn and admission that the policy has failed industry and consumers by driving up electricity bills. A Brussels paper on the European Union’s “2030 framework for climate and energy” will instead propose binding targets to reduce carbon emissions without imposing requirements on how the reductions are made. “It is good to see that the EU has learned the lessons of the current targets that imposed top-down renewable energy targets,” said a Government source.
23 Jan 2014

Sunny, windy, costly and dirty

This subsidy is costly. The difference between the market price for electricity and the higher fixed price for renewables is passed on to consumers, whose bills have been rising for years. An average household now pays an extra €260 ($355) a year to subsidise renewables: the total cost of renewable subsidies in 2013 was €16 billion. Costs are also going up for companies, making them less competitive than rivals from America, where energy prices are falling thanks to the fracking boom.
17 Jan 2014

Sluggish economy prompts Europe to reconsider its intentions on climate change

A deep and lasting economic slowdown, persistently high prices for renewable energy sources and years of inconclusive international negotiations are giving European officials second thoughts about how aggressively to remake the Continent’s energy-production industries. The details are still being negotiated in Brussels, but officials said the European Commission’s energy and climate proposal will probably include a binding target of reducing emissions by 35 percent to 40 percent by 2030. Some officials wanted to make the new targets for renewable energy nonbinding.
16 Jan 2014

Axe carbon tax to keep lights on and cut energy bills, says ScottishPower chief

Keith Anderson, chief corporate officer, warns that the “carbon price floor” (CPF), which taxes companies for burning fossil fuels, will make Britain’s remaining coal plants “largely uneconomic by around the middle of the decade”. With Britain’s spare power margin already forecast to fall as low as 2pc by 2015, the carbon tax will force more closures and “threatens to make us even more vulnerable to the risk of blackouts”, he warns.
8 Dec 2013

Energy firms 'facing cash drought after Ed Miliband's speech', says analyst

A leading City analyst claimed on Thursday that Ed Miliband had "killed stone dead" any chance of one of the big six energy firms obtaining finance for a very large new wind farm or gas fired power station before the next election. The warning from Peter Atherton at Liberum Capital came as a new row blew up around accusations of energy profiteering, this time by National Grid, which reported first half operating earnings of more than £1.5bn.
22 Nov 2013

Union and SPD bury Germany's energy transition

It is only one sentence in the coalition agreement, but it could mean the end of Germany’s green energy shift (Energiewende). The Christian Democrats (CDU) and Social Democrats (SPD) want to force the renewable industry to pay for conventional back-up energy generation.Translation provided by Philipp Mueller  
22 Nov 2013

German homes, offices searched in mafia wind farm probe

The offices of German state-controlled lender HSH Nordbank, which had financed the wind park, were also searched, Retemeyer said. German wind turbine supplier Enercon said it had been visited but was not a target of the investigation. HSH Nordbank provided 225 million euros ($304.3 million) in financing for the 96 megawatt (MW) wind farm.
19 Nov 2013

'Job done' on wind farms, says John Hayes

Too many of the turbines had been “peppered” across the UK without enough consideration for the countryside and people’s homes, adding that “enough is enough”. He added: “We can no longer have wind turbines imposed on communities. I can’t single-handedly build a new Jerusalem but I can protect our green and pleasant land.”
13 Nov 2013

https://www.windaction.org/posts?location=Europe&p=15&topic=Energy+Policy
back to top