The Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Protection and Nuclear Safety (BMU) will expand its research support program for renewable energy by EUR 8 million to EUR 128 million in 2011.
Among the 184 sponsored projects are wind power projects, especially offshore projects, as well as projects to enhance the efficiency of photovoltaics and cost-cutting in this area. One of the projects is the offshore test field Alpha Ventus. Of the EUR 30 million grant, which the European Commission approved last year, EUR 12 million were paid in 2010, the remaining EUR 18 million shall be paid until 2012. The first projects of the joint BMU/BMWi initiative “Innovation Alliance Photovoltaic” have been chosen to receive grants.
The energy infrastructure shall be modified to better accommodate renewable energies. To this end, BMU wants to expand its support for the optimization of the power supply systems, a program in which inter alia research on storage technologies and the expansion of the networks is sponsored. Research in the areas of geothermal energy, solar thermal power plants and low-temperature solar thermal power shall also be intensified.
Based on its Energy Concept, the government wants to adopt its 6th Energy Research Program in April 2011, the BMU press release informs. Renewable energies shall be one of the key areas. Other important areas will be smart grid and storage technologies. In its Energy Research Program, the government sets out its long-term aims and the main areas of the energy research policy. The 5th Energy Research Program entered into force on 1 January 2006. In 2010/2011 the government allocates approximately EUR 1.27 billion for energy research.