Massive Offshore Windfarms to Power Green Germany

Note to environmentalists: German utility corporations are building gigantic wind farms offshore that are expected to provide a quarter of Germany’s energy in coming decades. One plant, on an island, came online this week.

“Wind and solar energy, biomass and water power today cover more than 16 percent of German electricity requirements.”

  • Germany has 21,000 wind turbines
  • These turbines provide 6-7 percent of the country’s energy needs
  • When the wind is high, or domestic usage is low, the existing wind turbines can power all German households for a part of the day.
  • North Sea and Baltic Sea wind turbines are projected to produce 25 percent of Germany’s power needs by 2050, or 140 terawatt hours of electricity.
  • Even the conservatives in Germany are against building any new nuclear power plants and don’t see nuclear as significant to their future.
  • Germany’s energy policy was set by the Green Party when it was in coalition with the Social Democrats years ago, but has become so successful and popular that subsequent governments have stood by it.
  • 6 Responses

    1. Doesn’t beat Ireland. On a windy day last October Ireland got 33% of its electricity from wind power.
      link to irishtimes.com

      Several new projects are currently underway. By the end of 2010 Ireland will have enough turbines for 15% annual production. Scotland doing well also.

    2. Germans are also very involved in solar power, one can see the roofs of homes and even farmers barns are covered with solar panels; what a different attitude there – and consider that geographic latitude of Germany is at the level of southern Canada and the number of sunny days is less than in the USA. One could wish that the US govt will finally do something about the renewable energy and not just talk. Now, after another environmental disaster off the coast of Louisiana, the idea of renewable sources should be more palatable to the “repucrats”. The Green party in the US may get some boost because of that disaster.

    3. OK… maybe you’ll believe Popular Science magazine… quoting Reuters.

      link to popsci.com

      I think the link is quite descriptive.

      One way or another professor, America will have to keep KILLING for it’s NIMBY ‘lifestyle’.

      You may be OK with that… But I’m NOT!

    4. about nuclear power, a book:
      Chernobyl: Consequences of the Catastrophe for People and the Environment,”
      Alexey Yablokov of the Center for Russian Environmental Policy in Moscow
      Vassily Nesterenko and Alexey Nesterenko of the Institute of Radiation Safety, in Minsk, Belarus.

    5. When the wind is high, or domestic usage is low, the existing wind turbines can power all German households for a part of the day.

      Yes, when the wind is high. Those are the key words, and also the major problem with wind power – it’s intermittent, and even less reliable than solar power in its intermittency. During the “low wind” periods, they’ll presumably be burning imported Russian natural gas, or buying electricity from the heavily nuclear French.

      Even the conservatives in Germany are against building any new nuclear power plants and don’t see nuclear as significant to their future.

      Which is a terrible policy that will help them steal the dubious title of Europe’s largest energy importer from Italy.

      • What is needed is better battery storage, better distribution, and better integration with the grid. Your message contains a contradiction, since in the absence of the wind turbines Germany would be completely dependent on Russian natural gas imports. Why isn’t it better to have some percentage of that demand diverted to already-competitive alternatives?

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