The Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs has today published its Green Paper on the future development of the German electricity market. It looks into two basic approaches: an optimised electricity market (“electricity market 2.0″) or a further market alongside the electricity market to maintain reserve capacity (“capacity market”). Comments on the Green Paper are due by 1 March 2015.
Despite an amendment of the Renewable Energy Sources Act (EEG) in 2012 the area on which renewable raw materials are cultivated in Germany grew slightly in 2014 compared with 2013 reaching 2.34 million hectares, remaining slightly below the level of 2012, a study carried out on behalf of the Federal Ministry for Agriculture (BMELV) by the Agency for Renewable Raw Materials (FNR) found.
On 16 October the EU Commission published the results of stress tests carried out by 38 European countries, including the EU countries, which simulated two disruption scenarios. Cooperation among the Member States is key to alleviate the effects of disruptions, the Commission says.
Germany’s primary energy consumption is likely to fall to about 13.100 petajoule (PJ) or 446.5 million tonnes of coal equivalent (TCE) in 2014. This would be a 5% decrease compared with 2013, and the lowest level since reunification, Arbeitsgemeinschaft Energiebilanzen (Working Group Energy Balances – AGEB) said in its traditional autumn forecast. The mild winter had a much stronger impact on energy consumption than the economy, according to AGEB. Adjusted by temperature effects, the decline was 2%. Lower demand mainly hit conventional energy sources leading to lower CO2 emissions, while renewable energy grew by 1.6% against the trend in the first nine months, AGEB said.
At the meeting on 24 October 2014 the European Council agreed on the 2030 climate and energy policy framework for the European Union, which the EU will submit as its contribution for a global climate agreement to be concluded in Paris in 2015. The Council endorsed a binding EU target of an at least 40% domestic reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 compared to 1990. A binding EU-wide target of at least 27% was set for the share of renewable energy consumed in the EU in 2030 and an indicative EU-level target of at least 27% for improving energy efficiency.
The Federal Network Agency has decided in its first allocation procedure for grid connection capacity for offshore wind farms pursuant to the recently amended Section 17d para. 3 German Energy Act (EnWG). The decision covers eleven applications for participation in the allocation procedure and the available grid connection capacity.
According to preliminary figures by the Federal Association of the Energy and Water Industry (BDEW), gas consumption declined by 18% and electricity consumption by 4% with renewable energy meeting 28% of demand in the first three quarters of 2014.
Here comes data on electricity surcharge No. 4 for 2015: The surcharge on grid fees final consumers have to pay in 2015 for costs incurred by the transmission system operators (TSOs) relating to contracts on interruptible loads is 0.006 ct/kWh, the TSOs announced.
The German transmission grid operators have published the new offshore surcharge for 2015. They may may levy the offshore surcharge under certain conditions for compensation payments to offshore wind power operators due to disruptions of power lines and grid connection delays according to Section 17f EnWG (German Energy Act). The surcharge is based on the estimated costs for the next year (2015), but this time also includes a large refund as the 2013 surcharge proved to be too high. This leads to a negative offshore surcharge (i.e. an offshore discount) of – 0.051 ct/kWh for consumers with a consumption of up to 1,000,000 kWh at an individual point of delivery.
My colleagues from the Bird & Bird Stockholm office are organising a seminar on “Wind Power Investments – What does the Future Hold?” on 27 November. I will have the pleasure to speak about “Energiewende 3.0 – Changing German Feed-in Tariffs to Competitive Bidding by 2017?”