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German wind energy expansion remains slow as applications await clearance


In recent months, Germany has seen a sharp decline in the number of applications that have been approved for new wind turbine installations. When compared to the same period last year, new installations increased by more than 5% between January and September, but the number of newly permitted turbines decreased by 16.2%, according to preliminary data from the German Wind Energy Association (BWE). Hermann Albers, president of the BWE, recently stated that 10,000 MW worth of proposed projects were sitting on the desks of the licensing authorities, and that a faster rise in installations was required to meet expansion targets in the sector. “Decision making needs to be accelerated in order to finish procedures by the end of the year,” he stated.

RND reports that 365 new installations, producing 1,575 MW, represent just over half of the additional wind power capacity anticipated for this year. Robert Habeck (Greens), minister of the economy, set the goal for this year at 3,000 MW. The use of renewable energy is viewed as crucial for Germany to meet its climate goals and reduce its reliance on foreign fossil fuels. On the other hand, recent auctions for onshore wind have resulted in a lower number of bidders than was anticipated. In addition, the rate of expansion has varied from state to state, with southern Germany typically lagging behind the rest of the country. This north-south divide has only become more pronounced with the growth of wind farms this year, according to BWE, which was referring to a report carried out by the Onshore Wind Energy Agency. According to BWE’s statement, the states that have been falling behind for years in terms of both installed capacity and new construction will not build enough new capacity in the coming years to balance out the disparity between the north and the south.

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