The Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) has made additional background material on the EEG 2014 revision available on its website.
In 27 preliminary injunction proceedings (Eilrechtsanträgen) brought by five nuclear power plant operators, the Fiscal Court of Hamburg ordered various Main Customs Offices (Hauptzollämter) to preliminarily refund EUR 2.2 billion paid as nuclear fuel rod taxes.
A new report by Working Group III contributing to the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) shows that emissions have risen to unprecedented levels, growing more quickly between 2000 and 2010 than in the three previous decades. Hence reaching the goal of limiting the global mean temperature to two degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels, requires major institutional and technological changes, the report concludes.
The Bavarian government has adopted a draft bill regulating minimum distances of wind power plants to residential housing. Bavaria is thus the first federal state that makes use of a draft bill the German government adopted together with the bill on a reform of the Renewable Energy Sources Act (EEG). The bill amending the Federal Building Code allows the federal states to include minimum distances in the state building laws (cf. new Section 249 no. 3 BauGB).
Together with the EEG reform bill the government also passed the second monitoring report “Energy of the Future” on 8 April 2014. Based on 65 indicators, progress of the German Energiewende has been monitored. Besides, an expert committee has published an independent opinion.
The European Commission has today released its state aid guidelines for assessing public support projects in the field of energy and the environment for the period 2014 to 2020. Under the new regime the German government shall be able to largely uphold reductions on the EEG surcharge, though reductions will have to be scaled back and can only be granted to a more limited group of companies.
In line with the schedule set by Energy Minister Sigmar Gabriel (SPD), the government today adopted today the bill amending the Renewable Energy Sources Act (EEG). It is officially intended to cut costs for the support renewables as of 1 August 2014 by subjecting renewable energy sources to market forces to a greater extent, while ensuring continued renewable growth. The bill does not yet contain provisions on EEG reductions for energy-intensive industries, which had been discussed with the Commission in Brussels. Agreement had been reached late last night, Minister Gabriel informed.
The latest update of the Federal Association of the Energy and Water Industry’s (BDEW) list of power plant projects planned until 2020 (or without date for commissioning) comprising plants with a high availability (conventional and offshore plants) mentions increasing investor uncertainty and reluctance, with an exception in the offshore sector. On 2 April 2014 the Federal Network Agency (BNetzA) also presented an update of its list of existing power plants and gave new information on prospective construction and decommissioning.
New information by Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE show that renewable power input accounted for 28% of the German electricity mix in the first quarter of 2014. Q1 was charaterized by mild temperatures and a high solar and wind power production.
According to the latest information by the four German transmission system operators (TSOs), the positive balance on the EEG account increased in March 2014, yet EEG transfer payments were much higher in March 2014 than in the same month last year due in particular to high solar input.