Germany reaches 100% renewables for a few hours, 42% so far this year

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Germany reached 100% renewables for a few hours on Sunday and has averaged 42% for the year – well ahead of its 2020 target.

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Germany, the biggest economy in Europe, reached 100 per cent renewable energy for several hours on Monday, as huge output from its array of  wind and solar installations coincided with a May Day holiday when demand was subdued.

According to the official data, the combination of renewables reached 58GW round 1pm, compared with a demand peak of around 53GW. For several hours either side of that time, the renewable output was greater than demand, with excess power being exported to neighbouring countries.

Over the whole day, renewables accounted for 71.3 per cent of total generation on Monday, May 1, with wind and solar contributing 55 per cent.

Germany renewables

Over the year to date, the contribution of wind and solar has been 42 per cent of total generation, with wind and solar providing 28 per cent, and wind (22.2 per cent) falling just short of brown coal (23.2 per cent) as the biggest single contributor for the year to date.

The figures for 2018 show increased growth over 2017, when Germany reached 36.5% renewables as a share of domestic demand, meaning the country surpassed its 2020 target of 35 per cent share of renewables in domestic demand three years early.

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93 Comments
  1. Peter F 11 months ago

    But don’t you know it is all a hoax. Thousands of wind turbines and solar panels lie abandoned in Germany if you ask the Financial post and Jo Nova

    • RobertO 11 months ago

      Hi Peter F, I have seen an article written about the Dutch also abandening thousand of WTG and them being removed. It was a lovely article stating that some 2000 had been removed so I checked out. It turns out that they have been removing the older 50 Kw to 250 Kw units and replacing them with bigger units most 1 Mw or more and at the same time the actual capacity was also rising (less WTG’s with larger Mw or more grunt). It’s all a hoax! (NOT!!!).

  2. Ben 11 months ago

    That’s a good result, but for context, Germany has almost 114GW of installed capacity in renewables and 58 / 114 = 50.8% (including hydro, biomass, offshore wind, onshore wind and solar).
    So on a good weather day with low demand, Germany needs installed renewable capacity equal to double the demand.

    • Giles 11 months ago

      Well, that would make Germany like Australia then – which built more than 50GW of coal and gas to meet average demand of around 24GW. That’s twice as much capacity as needed.
      So the point is, any energy system needs a large amount of redundancy. The chances are however, that over time, renewable grids will need less.

      • Ben 11 months ago

        “Average demand” is not relevant. To be clear, Australia has 47 GW installed capacity (including 13 GW renewables) and peak demand of around 37 GW. Australia is nothing like Germany in power generation.

        Renewables will continue to vary output depending on weather, requiring ever greater installed capacity and dispatchable generation equivalent to a large portion of the demand.

        • JWW 11 months ago

          Why are you comparing apples with pears? The first of May is a public holiday in Germany in late spring, with no heating required and all businesses closed. Why do you compare a day with very low demand with peak demand in Australia?

      • The_Lorax 11 months ago

        Germany will miss it’s 2020 emissions reduction targets because they are closing nukes and keeping their coal-fired power stations running. Indeed they’re actually building new coal-fired power stations. What matters is consistent deep emissions cuts, not the occasional day where all electricity is generated by renewables. Going 100% wind and solar is huge technical challenge and it’s not altogether clear it’s possible. Meanwhile, every day is a 100% renewables day in Norway (hydro) and 50% of new car sales are EVs. France, Switzerland and Sweden have roughly half the per-capita emissions of Germany and are well positioned to electrify transportation.
        https://www.technologyreview.com/s/601514/germany-runs-up-against-the-limits-of-renewables/

        • CU 11 months ago

          Well there is other facts: “The country has thus surpassed its 2020 target three years early.” from https://energytransition.org/2018/01/german-energy-consumption-2017/

          About new coal-fired power stations: The Datteln 4 started to be build in 2007 (yes 11 years ago) and is huge economical and enviromental disaster, see
          https://www.power-technology.com/projects/datteln-4-coal-fired-power-plant/

          Or you mean Moorburg that started to be build around 2007? It is also huge economical and enviromental disaster. It is already complettly written off by Vattenfall.

          Far to many trolls are writing about the nonexistent new german coal-fired plant builds.

          • The_Lorax 11 months ago

            Germany abandoned it’s 2020 emissions reduction goals in January this year.
            https://qz.com/1175308/germany-is-abandoning-its-climate-goals-for-2020-what-happens-next/

          • heinbloed 11 months ago

            Liar.

            Publish an official statement to prove your claim.
            Don’t come up with self knitted clown’s acts.

          • zn 11 months ago

            Strong words.

            Germany is set to miss its renewable energy target of 18 per cent of final energy consumption by 2020. That is a fact: https://www.cleanenergywire.org/news/germany-miss-eu-renewables-goal-forecast-enbw-said-exit-coal/germany-set-miss-2020-eu-renewables-target-industry-association

            As for its emissions reduction target, it would seem they are on track to achieve that goal.

          • heinbloed 11 months ago

            Germany ( the German government) has NOT given up its emission reduction goals and has NOT given up the renewable energy target.

            Who claims otherwise is a LIAR.

          • Wallace 11 months ago

            “Liar” is a very strong word in English. We generally soften the impact of questioning someone’s truthfulness by using less strong words, saving ‘liar’ for extreme cases of dilerabate and damaging misinformation.

            I’d say that in this case zn thinks Germany won’t reach the 18% final energy cost and you say that the German government has not yet given up. I don’t see how that makes zn a liar, just someone with a less optimistic opinion.
            —–

            BTW, there are three different 2020 goals?

            1) EU CO2 reduction. 20% drop from 1990 levels by 2020.
            Met before 2017.

            2) German CO2 reduction. 35% drop form 1990 levels by 2020.
            Met in 2017.

            3) EU primary energy reduction. 18% drop from ?.
            May or may not be missed.

            Are there others?

          • heinbloed 11 months ago

            I did not call zn a liar.

          • Wallace 11 months ago

            Sorry, that’s how I read your comment. And I have to struggle some to read it otherwise after your denial.

            Let’s not make a big thing out of this. I was just suggesting that you might be firing off your big guns when it might be more effective to withhold them until really needed.

          • heinbloed 11 months ago

            Another target by the coalition government was to have 1 million electric cars on the road by 2020

          • Wallace 11 months ago

            It looks like Germany has done almost nothing to meet that goal.

          • heinbloed 11 months ago

            That is nearly correct.
            Incentives are offered to purchase an electric car but these incentives are hardly called for.

            PS

            The numbers of newly registered el. cars is going up, it doubles about every 12 month:

            https://www.kba.de/DE/Presse/Pressemitteilungen/2018/Fahrzeugzulassungen/pm10_2018_n_04_18_pm_komplett.html?nn=1837832

            But that won’t do to reach the 1 million by 2020.

          • Wallace 11 months ago

            To reach that sort of EV penetration will require a type of EV that just isn’t on the market in large enough numbers at the time.

            Once there are more Tesla Model 3s, 150 mile range Nissan Leafs, and the other cars those EVs will drag into the marketplace hitting a million EV target should be easy.

            Obviously closing nuclear plants has nothing to do with the EV goal being missed. If nuclear advocates bring up this ‘probably will be missed’ goal then they are really scraping the bottom of the barrel.

        • JWW 11 months ago

          Going 100% wind and solar backed up by (pumped) hydro and batteries is no major technological challenge in Australia. So much sun and wind the whole year round, and so much unused land (also roof-tops)!
          In Germany, achieving 100% renewable electricity is harder – very little sun in winter, and the wind is down, too. Seasonal storage will be required, maybe in the form of methane produced with excess wind power throughout the other parts of the year? Or developing Norway’s pumped hydro opportunities and sending the energy down the HVDC-cable?

      • RobertO 11 months ago

        Hi Giles, I believe that your correct with RE grid needing less than the current grid (1.9 times the need amount needed). Hydro is by far the largest single unit but as with lots of manufactures you can get many sizes (I think that the largest is 800 MW but Waikato River (NZ) has lots of 14 MW Francis Turbines). Failure of a single RE generator when the average size is under 10 MW will have little or no effect on the grid.

    • Ian 11 months ago

      Sorry Ben, not entirely clear, but are you a renewables good guy or do you think renewables suck? 😉

      I think the point of the article is to show what a country like Germany can achieve and that’s excellent. Because the European grid is integrated, you’d have to consider Germany as a sub-set of a bigger system. ie what is Europe’s best renewables day? What is the effect of this Deutsche renewables juggernaut on the coal and nuclear power plants of its neighbours? Apparently large boluses of renewables, especially solar, screwup the economics of chugalong coal – the so called duck curve. You’d think this effect would be diluted by the European grid so that Germany’s 100% renewables moment would be Europe’s , say, 30% episode. If that’s the case, then Germany can keep adding renewables without fear of saturating the market?

      A similar example would be a single state like South Australia achieving 100% renewables. They can just choof off their excess to Victoria or New South. That’s the point of an integrated grid: one person’s excess is the answer to another’s lack. In a grid with robust interconnectors and very diverse wind resources you could expect the aggregate wind output to not vary greatly. If a wind farm’s average output is 25% to 40% then you would need a total nameplate capacity of 200 to 300% to get close to covering all electricity needs . The times when all the generators are working to capacity or when none of the generators are producing would be very few.

    • heinbloed 11 months ago

      Always good to link some official source:

      https://energy-charts.de/power_inst.htm

      The fossil power plants closed in 2017 are not yet subtracted from the chart.

    • heinbloed 11 months ago

      The unofficial German target is to have 3 times of the max. power demand covered with RE capacities.Plus storage.

      The coverage at the moment is about twice of the max. power demand (REs and stinkers and radiators combined).
      So the difference isn’t that much.

  3. George Darroch 11 months ago

    This will be us in a few years. The only question is whether it’s 5, 10, 15, or 20.

    • Joe 11 months ago

      The sooner we get rid of The COALition the sooner we mirror Germany.

  4. Chris Schneider 11 months ago

    That is a huge result! The Australian grid is getting interesting, Currently producing more renewable energy than the total consumption of Queensland! Won’t be long until that is a norm with so many new renewables coming online.

  5. happosai 11 months ago

    Germany still burned 6GWh of lignite and 1GWh worth of hard coal during that time. Seems like they rather keep running coal plants and export excess than get rid of their coal addiction…

    • Joe 11 months ago

      That dreadful Lignite. Why on earth Germany find it so hard to stop using the Lignite just bambozzles me.The awful Hambach coalmine is the advertisement that just screams STOP LIGNITE!

    • The_Lorax 11 months ago

      It’s because they’d prefer to close their nukes instead of coal. Expansion of renewables capacity is barely keeping pace with reduction in nuclear capacity. Coal-fired generation is pretty static.
      https://www.cleanenergywire.org/sites/default/files/styles/lightbox_image/public/images/article/2015/12/power-generation-source-2015-ageb-dez-2.png?itok=rQP5nEXC

      • CU 11 months ago

        You see 42% is 42% which IS 42%.
        – it is NOT “barely keeping pace with reduction in nuclear capacity”.

        See also https://energytransition.org/2018/01/german-energy-consumption-2017/

        • The_Lorax 11 months ago

          Germany’s emissions were stable in 2017. They abandoned their 2020 targets in January this year because they had no hope of meeting them.
          https://energytransition.org/2018/01/german-energy-consumption-grew-in-2017-emissions-stable/

          • The_Lorax 11 months ago

            Again, the 2020 emissions targets are for all sectors, not just electricity. The article you are quoting at me is for the electricity sector only. But thank you for calling a liar. Germany still gets more than 80% of it’s energy from fossil sources.

          • Wallace 11 months ago

            Germany’s 1990 CO2 emissions were 1003.2 million tons.

            The EU target is a 20% decrease by 2020, down to 803 million tons.

            Germany’s 2016 CO2 emissions were 761 million tons. A reduction from 2020 of 24%. By 2016 Germany had already met the EU target.

            The German government has admitted that Germany will probably miss a self-imposed target of a 40% drop from 1990 levels by about 5 percentage points. Due to the early closure of their nuclear plants Germany’s CO2 emissions may be down “only” 35%, well better than the EU goal.

            Unfortunately no one alerted Germany that Japan was going to melt down three reactors. That turn of events was not factored in.

            Of course with the uptick in offshore wind installation it’s too early to declare the target missed.

          • The_Lorax 11 months ago

            Yes, but it is undeniable that Germany would have been able to make far faster cuts to emissions if they had chosen to close coal-fired power stations instead of nuclear power stations. As it is, Germany’s per capita emissions are roughly twice that of France.

          • Wallace 11 months ago

            We get it. You haz a sad because some reactors got closed.

            Decision has been made. Germany is installing wind and solar at a much higher rate than many other countries. Time to put the closed reactors behind and get pushing on those who are doing less than they should be doing.

          • The_Lorax 11 months ago

            I’m not “sad”. Germany made a choice to put nuclear safety concerns ahead of climate concerns. But it’s a bit of a stretch to claim Germany is leading the world on climate action when they have per capita emissions twice as high as some neighbouring countries with a similar standard of living.

          • Wallace 11 months ago

            Could we please quit the phony crap about France ?

            France made an economic decision to install nuclear back when they did. France has low carbon electricity by accident.

            If France’s coal was economically accessible France would have almost certainly coaled up.

          • The_Lorax 11 months ago

            Actually France expanded it’s nuclear program in response to the 1970s oil crisis. Germany in contrast halted it’s nuclear program around the same time in response to a very strong anti-nuclear movement. I’m not making judgements on which was the correct course if action, but the end result is Germany has roughly twice the per capita carbon emissions as France. Now maybe the French have been very, very lucky they haven’t had an accident, and after Fukushima there has been a lot of pressure to close nukes in France as well, but so far that hasn’t happened. So the two countries are following divergent paths, one is building renewables to retire fossil power and one is building renewables to retire nuclear power.

          • Giles 11 months ago

            You seem to be forgetting that France has decided to cut its share of nuclear from around 75% to 50% – replaced by renewables.

          • Giles 11 months ago

            and that would be a first step – the next step will be fascinating.

          • heinbloed 11 months ago

            They have started three years ago unnoticed by the atom clowns, atom power can’t compete against REs anymore.
            Since 3 years the atom power production of
            France is going down.

            Golfech1 could be shut down for good, twice now in April and and just now in May REs blew the lights out:

            https://www.ladepeche.fr/article/2018/05/06/2792663-le-reacteur-n-1-mis-a-l-arret.html

            machine translation:

            https://translate.google.com/translate?sl=fr&tl=en&js=y&prev=_t&hl=en&ie=UTF-8&u=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.ladepeche.fr%2Farticle%2F2018%2F05%2F06%2F2792663-le-reacteur-n-1-mis-a-l-arret.html&edit-text=

          • The_Lorax 11 months ago

            But they haven’t actually done it Giles. Originally the plan (passed in 2015 under the Hollande administration) was to reduce to 50% nuclear by 2025. That has now been postponed to 2030-2035. Macron has said his priority is to close coal-fired generation and keep nuclear power stations running.

            “Nuclear is not bad for carbon emissions, it’s even the most carbon-free way to produce electricity with renewables,” Macron said.

            The 39-year old, who has sought to forge strong ties with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, did not show any enthusiasm for her decision to phase out nuclear energy, one of her landmark policies.

            “What did the Germans do when they shut all their nuclear in one go?,” Macron said.

            “They developed a lot of renewables but they also massively reopened thermal and coal. They worsened their CO2 footprint, it wasn’t good for the planet. So I won’t do that.”

            https://www.reuters.com/article/us-france-macron-nuclear/nuclear-renewables-to-help-french-co2-reduction-goals-macron-says-idUSKBN1EB0TZ

          • heinbloed 11 months ago

            Liar.

            ” Actually France expanded it’s nuclear program in response to the 1970s
            oil crisis. Germany in contrast halted it’s nuclear program around the
            same time in response to a very strong anti-nuclear movement.”

            Atom power production increased in Germany after 1970 and reached its peak in 2001:

            https://www.ag-energiebilanzen.de/

            Germany was still No 2 in Europe with total atom power production:

            http://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/statistics-explained/index.php?title=File:Table2-Grosselectricityproductionnuclear-2016.png

            And had some of the worst CO2-emissions/TWh …..
            For a while it seemed Germany’s no 2 position might be taken over by the UK …
            the country with the highest electricity price in Europe and the most people dying every winter:

            https://www.eua.org.uk/cold-homes-worsening-britains-mental-health-crisis/

            And the dead people don’t consume anything, a graveyard emits very little CO2.

            But the UK-bangers are falling apart, so Germany could be no2 in Europe’s atom power sector for the next few years I guess.

            https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/may/06/cracks-nuclear-reactor-threaten-uk-energy-policy-hunsterston

            Keep your mouth shut, you are lying with every posting.

          • Wallace 11 months ago

            Yes, France built most of their reactors due to the 1970s OPEC produced oil crisis. Not to lower their carbon footprint.

            Yes, Germany decided to close their reactors because most Germans wanted the danger removed from their lives. They did not factor in climate change at the time. Climate change was not on hardly anyone’s agenda.

            Germany is working on replacing coal with renewables.

            France is getting ready to replace their expensive reactors with much more affordable renewables.

            Worry about the countries like Russia who are doing little to nothing.

          • The_Lorax 11 months ago

            Actually Germany is largely replacing nuclear capacity with renewables. France has changed direction on nuclear under Macron and plans to scale back form 75% nuclear electricity to 50% by 2025 have now been postponed until 2030-35.

            “Nuclear is not bad for carbon emissions, it’s even the most carbon-free way to produce electricity with renewables,” Macron said.

            The 39-year old, who has sought to forge strong ties with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, did not show any enthusiasm for her decision to phase out nuclear energy, one of her landmark policies.

            “What did the Germans do when they shut all their nuclear in one go?,” Macron said.

            “They developed a lot of renewables but they also massively reopened thermal and coal. They worsened their CO2 footprint, it wasn’t good for the planet. So I won’t do that.”

            https://www.reuters.com/article/us-france-macron-nuclear/nuclear-renewables-to-help-french-co2-reduction-goals-macron-says-idUSKBN1EB0TZ

          • Wallace 11 months ago

            “Nuclear is not bad for carbon emissions, it’s even the most carbon-free way to produce electricity with renewables,” Macron said.

            Nuclear is pretty good in terms of carbon emissions. It’s not much higher than wind and PV solar.

            Mixing nuclear with renewables gets you nothing except more expensive electricity. It’s like making spaghetti sauce using one can of tomato sauce that costs $0.50 and another can of the very same brand of tomato sauce that costs $2.00.

            Your sauce costs you $2.50 when it could have cost you $1.00.

          • The_Lorax 11 months ago

            I don’t believe this is correct. Do you have more recent data?
            https://energytransition.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/cm1-768×704.png

          • heinbloed 11 months ago

            Official comparison 2016-2017 (power sector) here:

            http://bilan-electrique-2017.rte-france.com/production/le-parc-de-production-national/#

            20% more fossil fuels burned – again!

            In 2015 France produced 22TWh electricity from fossil fuels:

            https://www.rte-france.com/sites/default/files/2015_bilan_electrique.pdf

            (see page 13 of the balance report which is page 15 in the pdf)

            In 2017 already 54 TWh were produced from fossil fuels

            (see first link http://bilan-electrique-2017.rte-france.com/production/le-parc-de-production-national/# )

            The overall emission are sharply going up since 2014 (when your clown’s data stopped):

            https://www.statista.com/statistics/449698/co2-emissions-france/

            The news:

            https://eandt.theiet.org/content/articles/2018/01/france-fails-to-meet-its-own-climate-goals-promises-to-double-down-on-carbon-reduction/

            https://www.reuters.com/article/us-france-carbon-emissions/france-to-revise-carbon-emissions-target-after-missing-2016-goal-idUSKBN1FB2W0

            France is the no.1 climate sinner of Europe – the only western country with an increasing CO2 emission balance since several years.

            The Paris conference was a circus, this year it will be staged in Poland.

            ———————————

            If you link shite data (2014!!) we know you are lying again.

          • The_Lorax 11 months ago

            You say: In 2017 [France] already 54 TWh were produced from fossil fuels

            In the same year Germany produced 134TWh from lignite, 83.3TWh from hard coal, 45.6TWh from gas. Total: 262TWh roughly five times that of France.
            https://1-stromvergleich.com/germanys-power-generation-mix-2017/#mix

            Your first link includes an explanation as to why fossil generation was required in France in 2017: (Google translation):

            “Total electricity generation in France amounted to 529.4 TWh in 2017, which corresponds to a decrease of 0.4% compared to 2016. Penalized by several droughts, hydropower production has dropped considerably (-16%). , 3% compared to 2016). The numerous unavailability of nuclear power plants coupled with the decline in hydroelectric production have necessitated a significant use of fossil thermal generation.”

            The news reports you posted indicate France missed it’s emissions targets because of the transport, housing and forestry sectors, not electricity generation.

            “He added that policies in the transport, housing and forestry sectors, where emissions targets were largely missed in 2016, would need to be substantially reinforced if France were to meet its emissions target.”

            Again, and I must keep repeating this point. France currently has roughly half the per capita emissions of Germany (4.5t vs 9.5t). Even if Germany’s Energiewende was spectacularly successful for another decade and the French continue to be the “No.1 climate sinner of Europe” (seriously?!) Germany’s per capita emissions would still be higher than the France’s.

        • The_Lorax 11 months ago

          Yes 42% is great, but surely the goal should be to reduce emissions, not increase renewables? Germany is a long way from being the best performing nation in Europe in terms of low emissions per capita.
          https://1.bp.blogspot.com/-tkIWxET8VfU/WV2PM8kDajI/AAAAAAAASb0/y994h0JaBewrSil6L1UGQFbswVTtpTVygCLcBGAs/s1600/FranceGermany.JPG

      • heinbloed 11 months ago

        Liar.

        Your link shows numbers until 2015 and it is 2018 now.

        REs have overtaken all other power sources some time ago and are the largest power source in Germany.

        https://energy-charts.de/energy_pie.htm

        Emissions traded in the emission trading scheme went down by 3.4% in 2017:

        https://www.umweltbundesamt.de/en/press/pressinformation/emissions-trading-german-installations-cut

        • The_Lorax 11 months ago

          That is incorrect.

          “In 2017, the 1,830 stationary installations in Germany that take part in the emissions trading system (ETS) emitted around 438 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalents, 3.4 percent less than in 2016. This means that the reduction in emissions in the emissions trading sector will be greater than the reduction in total German greenhouse gas emissions, which also include other sectors (e.g. transport, households).”

          Germany’s emissions were stable in 2017 and energy use increased.

          https://energytransition.org/2018/01/german-energy-consumption-grew-in-2017-emissions-stable/

          • heinbloed 11 months ago

            Liar.

            You are using non-relevant provisional data published in January 2018.

            ————————

            Power generation released less climate gases in 2017 than it did in 2016:

            https://www.umweltbundesamt.de/en/press/pressinformation/emissions-trading-german-installations-cut

            Quote:

            ” Emissions from energy supply: Emissions from energy
            supply industry fell by 5.4 percent to 312 million metric tons of carbon
            dioxide equivalents. This relatively sharp decline is due to declining
            coal and lignite emissions. Hard coal emissions fell by 17 percent,
            lignite emissions by a moderate 0.7 percent. While natural gas emission
            rose by 2.4 percent, this increase is negligible in absolute terms. “

          • The_Lorax 11 months ago

            And you are only talking about the electricity sector. Energy does not equal electricity. The 2020 targets are for *all* sectors not just electricity.
            https://energytransition.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/cm1-1.png

          • CU 11 months ago

            You are changing subject from electricity to primary energie..

            How will your darling nuclear help in that case? Still:
            42% is 42% which IS 42%. – it is NOT “barely keeping pace with reduction in nuclear capacity”.

          • The_Lorax 11 months ago

            Germany would have significantly reduced it’s emissions if it had chosen to close coal-fired power stations instead of nukes. Instead all this investment in renewables had resulted in no reduction in total emissions.

            I haven’t changed any subject. You have conveniently omitted the largest sources of emissions in Germany. Germany’s emissions reduction targets are for total emissions not just electricity.

            How could nuclear help? It could power the transition to electric vehicles for starters. That’s going to be a massive challenge for a renewables-only grid.

            I don’t know that Germany should be building any more nukes, but why close them prematurely when they’re still burning so much coal? They could be leading the world in emissions reductions now, but they aren’t for this reason.

          • CU 11 months ago

            The subject is if 42% is a record or not and if it then has “barely keeping pace with reduction in nuclear capacity” or not.

            Another subject is energiewende. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Energiewende_in_Germany
            Energiewende is the germans democratic choice since long time ago and not upp for discussion in Germany. You may lament as much as you want about it but it will not impact the germans choice and the last nuclear power plant will nonetheless be closed in 2022. Thereafter development of RE will really put a dent in coal power production.

          • The_Lorax 11 months ago

            I agree it is a democratic choice of the German people. The fact remains that if the German people had chosen to use the additional renewables capacity to close coal-fired power stations rather than nuclear power stations they would have made much faster progress reducing emissions. As it is, Germany has per capita emissions roughly twice that of France. This is at a time when we have around 5 years until the 1.5C carbon budget is gone. Is the No. 1 goal to reduce emissions or to increase renewables? I believe it should be the former.

          • Wallace 11 months ago

            Why did Germany close their reactors?

            Because they did not want to live with the risk.

            Why was the decision made to not replace the seawall a couple of years before the Fukushima disaster?

            Because whoever made the decision ignored the risk.

          • heinbloed 11 months ago

            ” Why was the decision made to not replace the seawall a couple of years before the Fukushima disaster?

            Because whoever made the decision ignored the risk.”

            The director of the Fukushima power plant payed with his life.
            And that of many others.
            When he was a little engineer with Tepco at Fukushima his job was to find points of safety improvement.
            He found out that the sea wall was much to small and needed massive improvements.He did all the technical drawings, made the financial calculations and passed them on for immediate solution.

            But then he became director: he had now the funds and the power to improve the seawall.
            But didn’t do so, the money which was already there was payed out to share holders and to himself (his bonus).
            He plundered the vault in the name of the mafia.
            He did not direct the seawall to be improved – despite knowing that the job was necessary.
            He died of cancer two years after the explosions,50 of his colleges who stayed with him in the control room during the explosion had to hand over their dosimeters to him and he destroyed them.

            Good riddance the Fukushima people said,he deserved it.

          • Wallace 11 months ago

            There was a natural seawall between the ocean and reactors. In order to make it easier to bring in materials and equipment during construction they blasted a hole through the seawall.

            It would have been a small cost to fill that breech.

          • heinbloed 11 months ago

            And it would have mattered since the cooling water pipes broke in the earth quake before the Tsunami hit them.
            Even without the Tsunami the reactors would have exploded.

          • JWW 11 months ago

            Some of the nuclear power plants are not closed prematurely, they just reversed the life-extension that was granted before.
            And before we know what the cost of decommissioning those power plants is, we do not know whether nuclear power is/was a cheap energy source the first place.

            Power generated from the new Hinkley Point C power station in GB is incredibly expensive at 92GBP/MWh in 2012, much more expensive than power generated by wind turbines, for example, and it is https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/ff6490380624c8431dc15246af779ad85fa2003e62b461c6271196976f299bac.png indexed to rise every year with inflation for the next 35 years. What a colossal fXXX-up. Read the whole sad story here:

            https://www.theguardian.com/news/2017/dec/21/hinkley-point-c-dreadful-deal-behind-worlds-most-expensive-power-plant

            Anyway, they German utilities sell a lot of (coal generated) power to their neighbouring countries, otherwise Germany would have lower emissions from the electricity sector.

        • The_Lorax 11 months ago

          “REs have overtaken all other power sources some time ago and are the largest power source in Germany.”

          That is simply not true. Oil supplied more than one-third of the energy in Germany. Your chart is only for electricity generation.

          https://energytransition.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/cm1-1.png

    • heinbloed 11 months ago

      Liar.

      Most coal burning capacity operating in Germany is owned by Czech and Swedish (atom)state investors (“Mafia”) and not a single coal power plant is owned by the German state.

    • heinbloed 11 months ago

      Factually wrong.

      Coal power production in Germany at 13.00 hours 1st of May stood at about 7 GW.
      The coal energy burned at this time was a multitude.

  6. phillyc 11 months ago

    Germany consumes about 520TWh per annum. Australia about 220TWh per annum. Considering population size and how much manufacturing is done in Germany. They are quite frugal in their consumption. This 100% renewables just goes to show that it is achievable and has to be achievable if the world is to meet the Paris Climate agreement.

    • JWW 11 months ago

      Yep. Energy saving can go a long way. Triple (!) glazing is the standard these days for new homes, and insulation everywhere else. And of course, no-one heats hot water with electricity, with the exception of heat pumps and your water kettle in the kitchen.
      And to improve energy efficiency in companies, a government-owned bank (KfW) gives out low-interest loans for energy saving measures. They are also available for insulating your older private house, or for PV systems, for example.

      • Ian 11 months ago

        JWW, presumably you are talking about Germany . Are you saying that hydronics and heat pump space heating is becoming the norm in that country?

        • JWW 11 months ago

          Yes, I was talking about Germany. Central heating systems with hot water circulating through radiators installed in the various rooms has been the norm for decades. The hot water for consumption is heated by the same central heating system (but in a separate loop including a 200l (e.g.) hot water storage tank). The energy source is typically natural gas or oil in older houses. Newer houses often have water pipes running in the floor for heating. This system of floor heating requires an only moderate water temperature, which in turn makes the use a heat-pump very energy efficient, but it also works well with traditional energy sources like gas.
          The energy efficiency of a gas central heating system is over 90%, and using the newer “Brennwert” technology actually up to 108% (using the latent heat contained in the condensing water vapour of the exhaust gas). So this is much more CO2-efficient than heating the hot water directly with electricity, like it is done in most rental apartments in Australia. The electric heater itself is 100% efficient, but the efficiency of a typical Australian (=fairly old) coal power plant is below 40% (could not find exact numbers). Add some transmission losses on top of that, and you end up with maybe 2/3 of the energy being lost.
          There is a lot of potential for CO2 reductions in Australia outside of the electricity sector. Mandating much better building insulation -also useful in summer- could go a long way.

  7. onesecond 11 months ago

    Well, the Agorameter puts renewable electricity generation at that time at 59 GW and demand at 63 GW, so not quite 100% but close. We will have to wait for the official numbers later that year, those real time numbers differ on different portals and get adjusted slightly later on.

    https://www.agora-energiewende.de/de/themen/-agothem-/Produkt/produkt/76/Agorameter/

    • heinbloed 11 months ago

      I see no 100% coverage with RE power on the 1. of May 2018 here as well:

      https://energy-charts.de/power.htm

      The SMARD data to which the author refersis provided by Agora who uses a lot of fantasy numbers, Agora usually correct their numbers without comment in a couple of days, weeks, ……

      Agora has reported 100% coverage several times before but on a second look agreed that it was a hoax.
      I would say it happened again.

  8. Sir John Maga 11 months ago

    Yes, but 12 hours later, wind drops to 10 GW and stays there for more than 5 days.
    The economy runs on consistent, reliable electricity, and stunts like this mean
    nothing when coal and nuclear is what we depend on.

  9. heinbloed 11 months ago

    Data verification:

    Entsoe ( the European grid agency) says that at 13.00 hours 12.656 GW of fossil and atom power were produced:

    https://transparency.entsoe.eu/

    And Entsoe says that 5.177 GW electricity was pumped away into pumped hydro power storage.

    And Fraunhofer ISE says that 7.479 GW were net-exported from Germany (“import balance”) at 13.00 hours:

    https://energy-charts.de/power.htm?source=all-sources&year=2018&week=18

    Combining net-export with pumped storage gives a surplus of 15.857 GW whilest at the same time atom and fossils produced only 12.656 GW.

    So indeed a theoretical 100% RE-coverage of the national demand was achieved on Labour Day.

    Congratulations!

    And thanks to the author Giles Parkinson.

  10. heinbloed 11 months ago

    EPR-site in the UK depending on RE-power:

    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/may/06/cracks-nuclear-reactor-threaten-uk-energy-policy-hunsterston

    Since the usual power supply Hinkley Point B is now idled for maintenance and might be so for good the neighbors at HPC have to use RE-power to build the atom power plant.
    How EdF will finance the EPR site without generating an income with their bangers …… who knows.

  11. Sir John Maga 11 months ago

    In Texas, wind energy is at 5 percent capacity, due to a high pressure over the state.
    Fortunately the state has many coal and natural gas generators to rely on.

    http://ercot dot com/content/cdr/html/CURRENT_DAYCOP_HSL.html

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