Monthly Archive for April, 2013

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BMU: Funding of Energy and Climate Fund Secured for 2013

Funding of the Energy and Climate Fund (EKF) had been secured for 2013, but continued financing for 2014 still had to be agreed on in the upcoming debate about the fund’s budget for next year, the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Protection and Nuclear Safety (BMU) informed.

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Rhineland-Palatinate: Government Approves Update of State Development Programme for Expansion of Renewable Energy

Following a comprehensive consultation process, the government of the State of Rhineland-Palatinate approved an update of State Development Programme (LEP IV) with regard to the expansion of renewable energy, in particular wind power.

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Public Hearing on Grid Expansion Bill

On Monday a public hearing on the “Second Law Concerning Measures to Accelerate the Expansion of the Electricity Grids” (ref. no. 17/12638) took place  in the Bundestag (Parliament). The bill contains the “Federal Requirement Plan for Transmission Networks”, which establishes the necessity and urgency of 36 power line projects included in the plan with binding effect for transmission operators and planning authorities.

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EU Parliament Narrowly Votes Against Withholding Emission Allowances

The European Parliament narrowly voted against a proposal aimed at withholding around 900 million emission allowances from the EU emissions trading scheme (EU ETS) over the next two year in order to boost the emission allowance price and make low carbon investments more attractive. It will now be referred back to the environment committee that had supported the plan in February.

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BVerwG on Overhead vs. Underground Transmission Lines Outside of EnLAG Pilot Project Areas

In a decision of 28 February 2013 the Federal Administrative Court in Leipzig (BVerwG) cleared the construction of a new overhead electricity transmission line by not granting preliminary relief against the plan determination decision (Planfeststellungsbeschluss) for a new 380 kV extra-high voltage overhead power line.  BVerwG rejected the challenges brought forward by an affected municipality  in North Rhine-Westphalia, and doubted whether the Energy Line Extension Act (Energieleitungsausbaugesetz – EnLAG) even allowed the underground cables requested by the applicant outside of the EnLAG’s specifically designated pilot project areas.

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Dena Power-to-Gas Internet Project

Using excess electricity from renewable power plants to produce synthetic methane is one of the options currently being explored in Germany to meet challenges created by intermittent renewable energy. In this context the German Energy Agency (dena) has launched the internet portal “Power to Gas” in cooperation with 20 partners from industry, science and associations. The internet site, which has just set up its own group on the business social network XING, shall help to examine the possibilities of methane storage.

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BDEW: German Electricity Grids 1.8 Million km

The German electricity grids are currently 1.8 million km long.  That is long enough to go around the world 45 times, the Federal Association of the Energy and Water Industry (BDEW) reported.

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Agora Energiewende: Less Offshore Wind Power Would Save Germany up to Two Billion Euros per Year

German politicians have a broad scope for action designing policies for the regional distribution of renewables and could even save EUR 2 billion a year until 2023, a study commissioned by the Agora Energiewende finds. According to the study this would require a faster expansion of wind turbines onshore and a slower expansion of offshore wind power (while maintaining the total output of power generated by wind power). Savings would be approximately the same whether the further expansion prioritised wind turbines primarily in the north (“best generation site scenario”) or wind park sites in proximity to areas of high power consumption (“consumption related expansion scenario”), the study concludes.

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Extended Consultation Deadline for BNetzA Guideline on Offshore Damages

The Federal Network Agency (BNetzA) has extended the deadline for comments on a “Guideline Establishing the Damages Payable to Operators of Offshore Power Plants in Case of a Disruption of the Connecting Power Line, a Connection Delay or Maintenance Work, Which Are Passed on the End Consumers” (Leitfaden zur Ermittlung einer umlagefähigen Entschädigung bei Störung, Verzögerung oder Wartung der Netzanbindung von Offshore-Anlagen) until 30 April 2013.

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Latest Information by BDEW and BNetzA on Power Plant New Build Show Hesitation

On the occasion of the Hanover trade fair, the Federal Association of the Energy and Water Industry (BDEW) published an updated list of power plant projects in various project stages. Although the list contained 38 GW of new build, the commissioning dates for almost a third of the plants were uncertain, BDEW said, blaming market conditions. On 27 March 2013 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.

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