January 3, 2019 Read More →

Renewables top coal as Germany’s largest electricity source

Reuters:

Renewables overtook coal as Germany’s main source of energy for the first time last year, accounting for just over 40 percent of electricity production, research showed on Thursday.

The shift marks progress as Europe’s biggest economy aims for renewables to provide 65 percent of its energy by 2030 in a costly transition as it abandons nuclear power by 2022 and is devising plans for an orderly long-term exit from coal.

The research from the Fraunhofer organization of applied science showed that output of solar, wind, biomass and hydroelectric generation units rose 4.3 percent last year to produce 219 terawatt hours (TWh) of electricity. That was out of a total national power production of 542 TWh derived from both green and fossil fuels, of which coal burning accounted for 38 percent.

Green energy’s share of Germany’s power production has risen from 38.2 percent in 2017 and just 19.1 percent in 2010.

Bruno Burger, author of the Fraunhofer study, said it was set to stay above 40 percent this year. “We will not fall below the 40 percent in 2019 because more renewable installations are being built and weather patterns will not change that dramatically,” he said.

The wind power industry produced 111 TWh from combined onshore and offshore capacity of just under 60 GW, constituting 20.4 percent of total German power output. Wind power was the biggest source of energy after domestically mined brown coal power which accounted for 24.1 percent.

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