Industry sources say the German Government is stepping back from a recently announced commitment to hold another special auction for offshore wind energy.
Only a matter of weeks ago, Germany’s coalition government signalled that it would agree to hold an extra auction for offshore wind and could launch a special tender by the end of October. That has not happened, despite parties in Germany’s coalition government agreeing to launch special tenders for offshore wind, onshore and solar power.
The government also confirmed that the coalition between chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservative CDU/CSU alliance and the Social Democrats had agreed to increase a target for renewable power in the country to 65% by 2030. A statement issued by the government said there would be auctions for 4 GW of onshore wind and 4 GW of solar as well as what was described as one for an unspecified amount of offshore wind. Industry has been calling for an auction of at least 1.6 GW. Industry has warned repeatedly that jobs will be lost in the offshore wind sector without action by the government.
However, the Stiftung Offshore-Windenergie has confirmed to OWJ that energy policy agreements proposed by the federal government on expansion of green electricity and set out in a recent paper do not include an offshore wind auction.
“Unfortunately, the short-term special contribution offshore wind provided for by the coalition is not reflected in the agreement. This means that climate and economic opportunities from green energy are being wasted,” said Stiftung Offshore-Windenergie managing director Andreas Wagner.
Mr Wagner said the importance of offshore wind energy to achieve climate goals and safeguard employment had recently been emphasised by northern German states and in joint call for offshore wind energy from industry.
“A special contribution of up to 1.5 GW of offshore should be set in 2018,” said Mr Wagner. “Due to the long lead times for offshore windfarms and their grid connection, it is necessary to quickly adapt the legal framework. Only in this way can further offshore wind capacity be hooked up by 2025.”
“The federal government has set itself the goal of 65% of German electricity generation from renewable energy by 2030. This target cannot be realised without a significant increase in offshore wind capacity, from 15 GW to at least 20 GW by 2030.
“The short-term special contribution for offshore wind promised by the coalition agreement is not reflected in the agreement. Climate policy and energy industry opportunities are being missed. Only the special tenders for onshore wind and solar energy can be found in the paper. An additional 4 GW for onshore and solar should be put out to tender by 2021.”