The Environment Agency reported on Monday that although Germany’s power production from renewable energy increased in 2022, it is still below the threshold required to fulfill the aim of generating 80% of electricity from renewable sources by 2030. The agency stated in its annual report that it anticipates renewable energy to account for approximately 46% of Germany’s power consumption this year, which is an increase from the 41% share that it held in 2017. Approximately 256 terrawatt hours (TWh) were generated in 2017, primarily from wind and solar power, which is a 9% increase year-on-year. However, this number is still lower than the target of 269 TWh for the year in order to achieve the goal of approximately 600 TWh by 2030, according to the agency.
The president of the agency, Dirk Messner, was quoted as saying in a statement that “the definitive direction for a successful growth process must be defined swiftly.” Berlin has increased its targets for the use of renewable energy this year in an effort to reach its goal of becoming carbon neutral by 2045. The city has also passed several bills to ease restrictions and accelerate the rollout of wind and solar power, declaring the expansion to be of “outstanding public interest.” As a result of Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine, there has been a significant drop in the amount of fossil fuels imported into Europe’s largest economy from Russia. This has resulted in an increase in the urgency with which renewable energy sources must be developed. The wind industry has produced a total of 128 TWh this year, of which 103 TWh came from onshore wind turbines.
However, according to the agency, production will not be able to achieve its prior high value of 2020 because there have not been enough new wind power installations. Only about 0.8% of Germany’s land is set aside for the development of onshore wind power at the moment. In the beginning of this year, Berlin worked on drafting a measure that would establish a minimum percentage of land in each of the 16 federal states that must be available for wind farms. According to the EPA, photovoltaic power generation increased by 23 percent year-on-year in 2022, reaching 61 terawatt hours. They attributed this increase to an increase in installations as well as “particularly sunny weather.” Along with individuals and businesses cutting back on their energy usage as a result of the fuel crisis, the milder weather was also a “major” contributor to the decrease in energy consumption that was seen for heating purposes. The heating produced by ambient heat and near-surface geothermal energy both contributed to the 13% year-on-year increase.