In a few weeks, German Chancellor Angela Merkel could officially begin her next term in office now that the Christian Democrats and the Social Democrats have reached a coalition agreement. Craig Morris takes a look at the reactions to the new proposals, which Matthias Lang recently summed up here.
The conservative CDU/CSU, the winners of the Federal Election of 22 September 2013, and the Social Democrats (SPD), who emerged second in the election, have presented a coalition agreement for a grand coalition in Germany that provides inter alia for a binding expansion corridor of 55% to 60% renewable energy by 2035. The partners announce to present a reform of the Renewable Energy Sources Act (EEG) by Easter 2014. As a novelty, the SPD will present the draft to its members for vote between 6 and 12 December before proceeding further with the coalition. Matthias Lang summarizes the results relevant for the Energiewende.
As Germany’s Energiewende proceeds, it faces new challenges that the new grand coalition will have to deal with. Paul Hockenos takes a look at the next steps for Germany’s clean energy shift.
German renewable energy association AEE has produced a simple chart comparing average household expenses for electricity, motor fuel, and heating oil. While everyone is focused on the rising cost of power, it turns out that the other two items have increased faster since 2000. Craig Morris investigates.
The AGEB (Working Group on Energy Balances), which tallies official energy statistics for Germany, expects consumption to increase by just over two percent this year. Craig Morris takes a look at the organization’s overview for the first three quarters.
In part one, Dan Seif, principal with Rocky Mountain Institute’s electricity and industrial practices, and Jesse Morris, Senior Associate for electricity and transportation practices at Rocky Mountain Institute, discussed the importance of lowering the soft costs of solar PV – all the related solar energy system costs besides the hardware. They covered two cost areas addressed in RMI and NREL’s new roadmap report on solar PV soft costs: 1) permitting, inspection, and interconnection (PII) and 2) customer acquisition. This time, they are looking will look at reducing financing and installation labor costs.
Why does Germany, a country with the same amount of sun on a yearly basis as Alaska, have residential solar costs half that of the U.S.? Why have solar panel prices dropped significantly while whole-system cost has remained relatively high? For Dan Seif, principal with Rocky Mountain Institute’s electricity and industrial practices, and Jesse Morris, Senior Associate for electricity and transportation practices at Rocky Mountain Institute, the answer lies in the soft costs of solar PV—all the non-hardware-related costs of installing a solar PV system.
Since a few years, self-consuming solar systems are on the rise. Jesse Morris, a senior associate of Rocky Mountain Institute, takes Germany as an example and looks at the possible implications for the U.S.