More jobs lost to green energy, I mean.
Worlee-Chemie GmbH, a family-owned company that has produced resins in the city of Hamburg for almost a century, is trying to escape the spiraling cost of Germany’s shift to renewable energy.
A 47 percent increase on Jan. 1 in the fees grid operators set to fund wind and solar investments is driving the maker of paint ingredients to Turkey, where next month it will start making a new type of hardening agent at a factory near Istanbul.
The levy will cost Worlee 465,000 euros ($620,000) this year, the equivalent of 10 full-time salaries, or one-third of the company’s tax bill. As German labor costs rise at the fastest pace in a decade, the price of weaning the country off nuclear energy by 2022 is crushing the so-called Mittelstand, the three million small and medium-sized businesses like Worlee that account for about half of gross domestic product.
Wow. Now that’s what I call government intervention in action. This German energy turnaround thing is working out practically as well as the European cap-and-trade system itself.
“It could be the proverbial straw that breaks the camel’s back. It comes on top of tax, general production costs, raw-material availability and bureaucracy, which have led to a deterioration of the investment climate in Germany.”