Germans launch blitzkrieg on turbines

39497STT readers might think of Germany as the land where large men in leather shorts drink beer all day from steins the size of Belgium, but it’s not just a land where slops and sausage reign supreme.

The German Mittelstand – its thousands of small to medium sized firms – builds stuff that works and lasts.  And Germany as a whole has been carrying Europe because it makes things that the rest of World finds useful and irresistible.


Also renowned for deep-Green politics, the Germans launched into wind power hard and early. But with a voter backlash looming from German power consumers – especially its manufacturing industry – who have had enough of escalating power prices, the Chancellor, Angela Merkel has announced an attack on the subsidies that led to the outbreak of turbine madness there and which threaten to drive its economy back to the dark ages.

The problem is the same the World over – if the wind ain’t blowin’ the machines ain’t goin’. So the Chancellor has woken up to the difference between “baseload” power – that’s there every time the factory wants to get to work – and wind power that doesn’t fit any meaningful description at all – at least in a first World economy that wants to stay that way.

As Ron “The Boss” Boswell said in the Australian yesterday: “We can have a carbon price and renewable energy targets or viable manufacturing. We can’t have both.”  The Germans appear to have plumped for the latter.  Will your next Federal Government do the same?  Well, Tony – we’re all ears.

Germany to cut Renewable Energy support
By Martin Lynch (European News Editor) — May 8, 2013 — Industrial Info Resources

Germany, one of Europe’s strongest supporters of green energy, is facing an overhaul of its renewable energy act that will see subsidies for renewable energy projects cut and more gas-fired power plants constructed.

German chancellor, Angela Merkel, has announced that she wants to see a reduction in the feed-in-tariffs (FiTs) paid to renewable projects in order to reduce the cost to the government and lower consumers’ electricity bills. At a recent Frankfurt conference she claimed the country needs a more balanced energy mix through the use of more conventional power plants based mainly on gas.

“We have to think about how to slow down the dynamics so that we get a sensible expansion of renewable energies but not a situation in which no gas-fired power plant can be operated profitably anymore and each gas plant has to be subsidized so it provides baseload capacity,” Merkel explained.

Merkel is echoing much of what Germany’s Federal Environment Minister, Peter Altmaier, called for in March when he received broad support for an overhaul of the renewable energy act, or the EEG. Merkel said that “in the coming months and at least one to two years” the government has to find a way to change the EEG law on subsidies.

Merkel wants to avoid voter backlash in the coming elections in September. German citizens have seen their electricity bills jump in recent years thanks to an increasing renewable energy charge. Merkel hopes that calling for cuts in renewable subsidies will keep voters on her side.

Merkel’s government made the knee-jerk decision in 2011 to abandon nuclear power following the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear disaster in Japan. It has shut a number of older plants already but it wants all 17 of its reactors offline by 2022.

Before Fukushima, Germany was getting around 22% of its power from those 17 nuclear reactors. Following the closure of the oldest eight reactors, that share has dropped to around 16%. Germany is facing an energy crisis in the coming decade once all of those pants are shut down. The government has admitted that it needs up to 20,000 megawatts (MW) of additional fossil-fuel powered plants built by 2020 – that’s double its previous estimate of 10,000 MW. For additional information, see June 16, 2011, article – Germany Needs 20 Gigawatts of Fossil-Fuel Power Plants.

However, the high price of gas and the low cost of cheap coal imports from the U.S. is making the construction of gas-fired plants unattractive to many energy companies in Germany, and Europe, as a whole.

Industrial Info Resources (IIR), with global headquarters in Sugar Land, Texas, and eight offices outside of North America, is the leading provider of global market intelligence specializing in the industrial process, heavy manufacturing and energy markets. Industrial Info’s quality-assurance philosophy, the Living Forward Reporting Principle™, provides up-to-the-minute intelligence on what’s happening now, while constantly keeping track of future opportunities.

12 thoughts on “Germans launch blitzkrieg on turbines

  1. Amazing how the average Joe out here in IWT Land can see, and has seen it for years that these things are absolutely useless.
    Now when the purse is empty, and the whole country is in rapid
    financial decline, the more responsible politicians are slowly coming to the conclusion of what we have been preaching for the past 10 years. Stopping them now is a forgone conclusion, put your house on it, although some of us out here in IWT land are unable to do that, as our houses are worthless.

    The major problem confronting us is what they are going to do about the ones that are up and the ones that are being built as I write this.

    ONE MAJOR HEADACHE FOR THE GOVERNMENT COMING UP. I don’t have any sympathy for them, for after all they were told but wouldn’t listen, and the piles of paperwork attest to that.
    I really don’t like the idea of,

  2. The reliance on Wind Energy in particular around the world is going to create problems for everyone, sinking so much money into this industry at the expense of every other source of energy production has been a worldwide disaster. If the world had spent half the money poured into this industry on research into other forms of sustainable energy production it’s possible we would now be able to see a future with a broad range of energy production methods which will be able to continue producing longer than 15-20 years at a level of production that will be constant and meet requirements. As it is that money has been wasted on an ill conceived method of energy production, which has created anything but an environmentally, safe, sound and economic energy supply.

  3. At last someone with a bit of international clout is sitting up and taking notice. Good on you Angela!

    Also very heartening to read (elsewhere) the response by professor Alec Salt to the Victorian health department. Loud applause from our household which is bombarded 24/7 with low frequency and infra sound to the extent that we are considering trying to sell or at worst, simply walking away.

  4. Lets hope that this is one of many governments waking up to the nonsense that is the wind industry and their sweet money making racket. I cannot believe that so-called educated politicians have fallen for industrial wind turbines fixing the problem of global warming. I think obviously they are blinkered or ignorant. Every country with wind turbines should persist in rising up and resisting the industry without proper research into the problems that industrial wind turbines cause humans, landscape, roads, flora and fauna and both accidents and deaths.

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