VDMA/BWE: The German wind industry takes a breather




The figures for onshore wind in Germany show a downturn in the first six months of this year. Despite this, the trade associations predict a net additional installation for the whole of 2015 of at least 4,000 megawatts, which would make climate goals achievable. The manufacturers are however burdened by a boom and bust market situation, and perch on a system that will guarantee continuous future expansion.

Frankfurt/Berlin, 30 July 2015 – In the first half of 2015 the additional net wind energy capacity installed in Germany was around 1,093 megawatts. This is about a third (34 per cent) less than in the same period last year, when the industry achieved a record figure of 1,659 megawatts. This still makes the first half of 2015 the second-best in the history of wind energy in Germany. If one includes the capacity of the turbines dismantled and replaced in the first six months, then the gross capacity increase was 1,185 megawatts.
 
VDMA Power Systems expects a strong second half in 2015. By the end of the year they estimate an annual net increase of 4,000 to 4,500 megawatts capacity and therefore a total onshore wind capacity of at least 42,000 megawatts. The crucial factors the German Wind Energy Association sees in three restrictions impending in 2016: First the degression anchored in the Renewable Energy Sources Act (EEG) kicks in as of 1 January 2016. Second the forthcoming non-remuneration in the event of lasting negative electricity prices creates uncertainty about the future, and lastly, the level of interest rates is picking up again.

“The transformation in the electricity market is forging ahead. Cost-efficient wind energy still has great resources. Like the further expansion of bioenergy and solar energy, it is essential if we are to achieve the goals of the shift to renewable energy usage. It is also necessary to focus more sharply on the mobility and heat sectors, which to date have been treated more as poor relations. These have to be opened up to renewable energy. A dynamic expansion of land-based wind energy and a barrier-free access towards mobility and heat would contribute to achieving the internationally agreed overall climate policy objectives”, emphasises Hermann Albers, president of the German Wind Energy Association.
 
“With its strong domestic market and an export quota of up to 60 per cent, the German wind industry is healthy. The world market of 50.000 megawatts in 2014 is growing at an annual rate of 5 per cent. The Wind turbines manufactured in Germany make a fifth of the installed capacity throughout the world in 2015. But the expansion of land-based wind energy must develop equably also in Germany in the future, because the wind turbine manufacturers and their whole supply chain are burdened by the continuous alternation between phases of investment restraint caused by uncertain future framework conditions and phases where there is a clearance sale atmosphere caused by anticipatory effects”, says Matthias Zelinger, managing director of VDMA Power Systems. “To this end the volumes for tendering should be smoothed out as of 2017 and should take into account the average depletion over a longer period of time.”


Contact:

Catherine Diethelm
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