Federal Council Clears German Energy Act Amendment Including New Offshore Provisions

In its last meeting in 2012, the Federal Council (Bundesrat) did not object to the third amendment of the German Energy Act (EnWG), which Parliament (Bundestag) approved in late November. The amendment contains new provisions regarding offshore wind power, in particular an offshore planning and an offshore liability regime, as well as shut-down restrictions for existing power plants and more.

The law will now be submitted to Federal President Joachim Gauck for countersignature. When signed it will be promulgated in the Federal Law Gazette and enter into force the day thereafter.

For more information on the modifications of the EnWG with regard to

  • Offshore wind power
  • Possible postponements of planned shutdowns of power plants to improve the security of supply
  • Exemptions of pumped storage power plants from grid charges and
  • Interruptible loads
please see here.
 
In connection with its decision on the EnWG amendment, the Bundesrat, which represents the interests of the federal states (Länder), adopted a resolution. The resolution calls the exemptions of grid charges for operators of  pumped storage power plants that are granted under certain conditions a step in the right direction, but says they do not go far enough. The federal states therefore ask the government to review if grid charges for storage power plant operators should be regulated in a different way and called on the government to present a further amendment of grid charges for pumped storage power plants in spring 2013. Furthermore, the Länder asked that the new offshore grid plan be drawn up in cooperation with the coastal states, and that the competence for grid connections in the coastal waters be re-transferred to the coastal states.

Source: Bundesrat

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