No Subsidies, No Service

Twenty years of government subsidies apparently aren’t enough to make German wind parks profitable.

Wind Parks

Once the subsidies run out in 2020 thousands of perfectly functioning wind turbines will have to be taken out of service. You can only make money with this technology if its subsidized by the tax payer? Maybe there’s something wrong with this business model.

Doch damit ist Ende 2020 Schluss – die Förderung gibt es nur für zwanzig Jahre. Was tun? Die Anlagen einfach abreißen, obwohl sie noch bestens in Schuss sind? Oder lässt sich mit ihnen auch ohne staatliche Unterstützung Geld verdienen?

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German Of The Day: Preiserhöhung

That means price rise. For German electricity bills, in this case. Another big one on the way. Wonder why?

Energy

Keen to drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions and transform its energy sector, German leaders adopted a vast program called Energiewende eight years ago and the country prides itself on setting the pace for change in the European Union…

But earlier this year, officials admitted the country will not hit the 2020 goal, saying it would reach 32 percent at best (40 percent was the goal).

Greenhouse gas emissions in Germany have not decreased for the last nine years and emissions from the transportation sector have not fallen since 1990. In fact, the United States has reduced carbon emissions more than Germany, in both real and nominal terms…

The growing pains have led to higher prices, largely shouldered by residential power customers.

Between 2015 and 2017, Germany inched ahead of Denmark for the highest electricity prices for household customers (35 cents per kilowatt-hour, in U.S. currency), according to the statistical office of the European Union.

Viele deutsche Haushalte müssen im kommenden Jahr deutlich mehr für Strom bezahlen. Berechnungen von Online-Vergleichsportalen zeigen, dass die Preise in der Grundversorgung um durchschnittlich vier bis fünf Prozent steigen werden.

Reality Can Be Like That

Germany’s green dreams run into climate change reality – Berlin’s commitment to stay nuclear free complicates Europe’s push to lower emissions.

Green

The contradictions in Germany’s energy policy are coming home to roost.

It’s struggling to balance efforts to combat climate change while at the same time shutting down its nuclear power plants.

Don’t sweat it, Germany. If you need any advice on how to improve things in the CO2 department just contact the folks in Washington.

“The rushed and improvised exit from nuclear power that some support is not our policy. Recent events prove that pretending otherwise is a pure illusion.”

German Of The Day: Aktionskunst

That means performance art. And in one of the stupidist performances seen to date in Berlin, Greenpeace activists painted the streets around the Siegessäule (Victory Column) yellow. Greenpeace went yellow, in other words.

Greenpeace

They stole this idea from the ancient Egyptions, I believe, as they also worshipped the sun (it kind of looks like the sun, see?). The yellow paint, I think, representing, uh, sunlight or something and thus symbolizing, well, how the hell am I supposed to know what this symbolizes? Wait, I’ve got it now. It symbolizes just how awful coal-firng power plants can be for sun-worshiping Greenpeace Germans (yellow or not) and the rest of humanity for that matter and that they need to be shut down immediately or something. Big medicine, folks. Why didn’t somebody think of doing this before?

Die Berliner Polizei ermittelt gegen Aktivisten der Umweltorganisation Greenpeace – zum einen wegen gefährlichen Eingriffs in den Straßenverkehr, zum anderen wegen eines Verstoßes gegen das Versammlungsgesetz. Greenpeace hatte am Dienstagmorgen um 7.30 Uhr auf dem Großen Stern in Tiergarten gelbe Farbe ausgekippt, insgesamt 3500 Liter.

I Got The Power

Electricity bills, actually. Big ones. And talk about renewable. These bills just keep on coming and coming and growing and growing…

Power

Voter support for Angela Merkel’s long-standing pledge for climate protection risks being undermined by stubbornly high pollution levels and power prices.

Average retail power costs are set to climb 111 percent since 2000, when guaranteed subsidies for wind, solar and biomass power first started being added to consumers’ bills, forecasts from the BDEW utilities federation showed last week. Germany may for the first time move up a notch to share with Denmark the highest household energy bills in the EU.

It’s more evidence that gains in wind and solar power competitiveness have yet to trickle down to consumers, frustrating the aim of keeping Merkel’s green energy transition affordable.

“I’m from the government and I’m here to help.”

Green Phantom Energy Expensive, Too

How the hell do they do this? It’s magic.

Strom

And the trick goes like this: Germans spent some 643 million euros last year for energy that was never even produced. The reason is the wind energy operators get compensation payments for lost revenues.

How’s that? Is this the New Deal all over again? Nope. Well, yup. Only different. On most days wind turbines in Germany produce more energy than needed. In oder to avoid overloading the energy grid, turbines get taken off the grid or this energy gets fed into foreign grids – for free. In order that German wind energy operators still get their money, however, they get “compensation.” That is, money for electricity they never had to produce. 643 million euros was shelled out for this last year alone, like I said. And things are looking up, too. This was over twice as much as was paid in 2015 (315 million euros). Can’t wait for next year’s bill. German taxpayers pay for this, just in case you were wondering.

Damn. I sure do wish that US-Amerika could start making some progress here with this renewable energy scam, I mean business, but nobody back home seems to get it.

Die Strom-Netzentgelte steigen auf Rekordniveau. Ein Grund sind Windräder, die sich im Leerlauf drehen. Und die Verbraucher merken es im Portemonnaie.

German Brains Tick Differently

So let’s tock about it. “Germans Just Love Paying Sky-High Prices for Green Energy.”

Energy

Huh? I don’t get it, either. It’s kind of like Angela Merkel’s popularity ratings. How could she still be in office after that refugee number of hers? Yet her popularity ratings are still very high. It makes no sense.

So even though… The cost of the Energiewende  is largely borne by German consumers, who pay a surcharge of around €20 ($23.61) on their energy bills. German households pay more for their electricity than in any other European country except for Denmark, where power costs €0.308 per kilowatt hour to Germany’s €0.298.

However, as the latest survey – conducted by Kantar Emnid on the AEE’s behalf – shows, enthusiasm for renewables is increasing if anything. “The survey results show the breadth of the societal consensus supporting the Energiewende in Germany,” said AEE deputy managing director Nils Boenigk.

The AEE’s survey that 95 percent saw the expansion of renewables as important or extremely important. That’s up from 93% in a similar survey last year.

95 Prozent der Deutschen für Ausbau von Ökostromanlagen.

More Government In Action

Here’s how this one works.

Tax

Step 1: The German government invents a new tax back in 2011 (before Fukushima even) making German energy utilities pay the government for using the nuclear fuel rods they already use.

Step 2: The utilities raise the price of energy they produce directly after that so the German consumer covers this arbitrary government interference.

Step 3: The German supreme court now rules that this tax is unconstitutional (you can’t just make up taxes that don’t have a constitutional basis, not even in Germany) and that the German government must now pay back the six billion euros (with interest) it took from these utilities.

Step 4 (still to come): The utilities will not compensate the German consumer nor reduce the price increases it passed on to them for having had to pay for this illegal German government tax.

Step 5 (still to come): The German government has already spent the six billion euros, of course, so it will need to round up that money from somewhere else.

Step 6 (just a question): Who do you think the German government is going to get this money from?

The system is rund (round), as the German say. And it works perfectly, as usual.

Der Gesetzgeber, so die Begründung, kann nicht irgendwelche Steuern erfinden, sondern nur solche einführen, die im Grundgesetz vorgesehen sind.

Germany Not To Reach Its E-Car Goal

Nope. Sadly, chancellor Angela Merkel has just announced that Germany will not be able to reach its goal of having at least 20 e-cars on German roads by the year 2020.

E-Car

This extremely ambitious goal, mocked from the start by gas-guzzling German automobile experts everywhere (some 97 percent of the German population), has now been scrapped for a more realistic goal of a nice round non-dirty dozen.

Chancellor Angela Merkel said that Germany will likely miss the government’s target of bringing one million electric cars onto the roads by the end of the decade. The sale of electric vehicles (EVs) has remained sluggish in Germany despite discounts introduced last year and granted to buyers of green cars. In 2016, there were less than 80,000 electric cars on German roads. Experts say German consumers remain reluctant to buy EVs because of relatively high prices, limited driving range and restrictions due to the low number of charging stations.

Merkel: Ziel für E-Autos nicht zu schaffen.

Wind Energy Still Safer Than Nuclear Energy

Unless you’re a bird, of course. Or you’re a truck driver transporting turbine blades on a German autobahn.

Wind

The giant turbine blade fell when the transporter which was transporting it was involved in an accident on the A33 autobahn near Bielefeld. The blade was knocked across the entire width of the autobahn when another lorry ran into the back of one of the transporter’s escort vehicles.

Auf der A33 ist am Dienstagmorgen ein Lastwagen mit einem Schwertransport kollidiert, der den Flügel eines Windrades transportiert hatte. Der Lastwagen ist laut Polizei zunächst in das hintere Begleitfahrzeug des Schwertransportes gefahren. Wie das passieren konnte, ist noch unklar.