The online daily Berliner Zeitung (BZ) here reports that German consumers in 2015 have “never paid so much money for supporting renewable energy.”
Wind energy is hugely expensive and doesn’t work well. Photo: NTZ
Some 15 years ago German Environment Minister, Jürgen Trittin, wanted the public to believe that Germany’s Energiewende (transition to renewable energies) would only cost consumers about as much as one scoop of ice cream per month. Since those famous words were spoken that scoop has ballooned to a jumbo bucket of Ben and Jerry’s.
Never have German consumers paid so much for electricity. Indeed one study concluded that the high cost of electricity in Germany is resulting in hundreds of thousands of German households having their power cut off because families can no longer afford the high electric bills – see here and here. It just goes to show that under reckless political management even a scoop of ice cream can become a luxury.
The BZ reports:
According to media reports, 24.1 billion euros were paid out to green energy producers last year. That is 2.6 billion euros, or 12 percent, more than in 2014.”
The costs are rising so fast that some leading politicians are (finally) beginning to sound the alarms. The BZ writes that leading conservative politician Michael Fuchs of Angela Merkel’s CDU party “fears the worst“, telling the flagship daily Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung that the Energiewende “is on the best path to becoming a financial disaster”.
And despite the massive investment, wind energy was only able to deliver 13% of Germany’s electricity needs last year – and that in a year which was a relatively windy one.
What will be the consequence of all the Bernie-Sanders-“free” green energy in the future? The Berliner Zeitung writes: “Higher costs”.
One reason for the higher costs, the BZ writes, is because of the governments plan to boost investment in offshore wind parks – and slow down the construction of onshore parks. The problem with that plan is that offshore wind energy is far more expensive. Offshore wind park operators are guaranteed up to 19.4 euro-cents per kilowatt-hour – which is some three times more than what onshore operators get.
And there’s still remains the problem of getting offshore wind energy to markets inland.