BMWI and BMU Discuss Next Steps to Implement Energy Policy Shift

In a first meeting of the new steering committee “Energy Policy Shift”, the progress made in the implementation and the next steps were discussed, the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology (BMWi) and the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU) said in a joint press release.

The steering committee is chaired by State Secretary Stefan Kapferer (BMWi) and State Secretary Jürgen Becker (BMU). Both ministries agreed to continue to implement last year’s energy policy shift away from nuclear power towards a renewable energy supply in a speedy manner, the press release points out.

According to State Secretary Kapferer, the ministries will focus on grid expansion, renewable energies, energy efficiency, power plants as well as energy related research and storage technologies. The state secretaries of BMWi and BMU, the leading ministries for the energy policy shift, welcomed the constructive atmosphere of the first meeting of the steering committee. The committee shall convene biannually.

In the past the Ministers Philipp Rösler (BMWi) and Norbert Röttgen (CDU) had often voiced differing opinions on topics relevant for the energy policy shift, e.g. regarding solar feed-in tariffs or energy efficiency. As finding a common position took some time, there were calls from the industry to create a Ministry of Energy. Last week Chancellor Angela Merkel said in an interview with the newspaper Rheinische Post that an Energy Ministry might be an option after the shutdown of the last nuclear power plants, i.e. in 2022. For the time being she reportedly invited the heads of the four major utilities E.ON, EnBW, RWE and Vattenfall, the trade association BDEW, the union IG BCE and the Federal Network Agency (the regulatory authority) for talks at the chancellery on 2 March 2012. According to Rheinische Post, Ministers Rösler and Röttgen will not be present.

Source: Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology