Germany increases energy from renewable sources to 55%

Berlin has broken the 50 per cent mark for the first time

Workers perform maintenance on solar panels on the roof of a warehouse in Buerstadt, Germany. Getty Images
Powered by automated translation

Europe's largest economy has moved closer to its 2030 goal, with the share of renewables on Germany's power grids rising 6.6 per cent to 55 per cent last year.

By the end of the decade, Germany wants green power to account for 80 per cent of its energy mix.

To achieve this, the country has ditched nuclear power and aims to abandon most of its coal generation, using its remaining gas plants mostly for grid backup.

Its renewable sources include offshore wind, which contributed 31.1 per cent, solar at 12.1 per cent, and biomass 8.4 per cent, while the remaining 3.4 per cent came from hydropower and other renewables, regulator Bundesnetzagentur said in a statement.

The rise in energy secured from renewables in 2023 was helped by capacity expansion as well as weather, it said.

“We have broken the 50 per cent mark for renewables for the first time,” Economy Minister Robert Habeck said in a statement. “Our measures to simplify planning and approvals are starting to take effect.”

Green energy sources – in pictures

Power grids, which are consumer funded and supervised by the regulator, are enabling the ongoing transition from central fossil fuels-based generation to millions of decentralised low-carbon production units relying mainly on wind and sun.

The total load on public power networks in 2023 fell by 5.3 per cent to 456.8 terawatt hours last year, reflecting weaker demand and green power taking priority over generation using fossil fuels.

Germany is still suffering from a contraction in economic activity in the aftermath of Russia's invasion of Ukraine, with the ensuing slump in Russian energy imports triggering sharp energy price increases in 2022.

Last year, the benchmark day-ahead power price fell by 60 per cent to $104 per megawatt hour, returning to 2021 levels.

Updated: January 04, 2024, 1:29 PM