The Federal Government supports wind energy as one fundamental pillar of the energy transition. There has been a list of tasks to strengthen the deployment of land-based wind energy published in September 2019 to face the existing issues on approval procedures or available sites.
More than a fifth of the national energy demand (21.8%) has been generated with wind power in 2019. With almost 126 TWh of electrical output, wind energy is one of the most important energy sources within the German electricity mixture, especially due to very good wind conditions in 2019. Furthermore, the value of wind power related research is appreciated by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy, resulting in allocated funds of 80.75 million EUR (90.68 million USD), including 1.76 million EUR (1.98 million USD) supplementary funds for ongoing projects, for 2019. However, despite a slight increase in approvals for new wind turbine projects, the build-up of wind turbines in Germany is progressing slowly.
Deployment of offshore wind energy increased slightly compared to the previous year to 1,110.7 MW (986.9 MW in 2018). Onshore the newly added capacity only reached 981 MW (2,178.3 MW in 2018). This is the lowest value since more than 20 years and triggered strong debates between politics, industry, communities and other stakeholders.
The generation of around 126 TWh of wind energy led to a reduction of greenhouse gas emissions of 89 million tonnes of CO2-equivalent. In 2019, the share of wind energy compared to all renewable energy production results in 51.6 %.
In 2019, investments and economic impact in onshore and offshore wind energy were 3.58 billion EUR / 4.02 billion EUR (7.5 billion EUR / 8.4 million USD in 2018). Meanwhile economic benefits of 2.86 billion EUR / 3.21 billion USD (2.72 billion EUR/ 3.05 bill ion USD in 2018) from wind energy operations stayed stable. The shrinked national market is challenging wind turbine manufacturers and suppliers. E.g. German OEM Enercon announced to dose production facilities and to let go a significant number of employees in order to adapt to the challenging home market situation. Furthermore, Senvion became insolvent and its service businesses were bought up by Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy.
Wind energy continues to be central to the German EnergyTransition as one of the main supporting pillars. Federal and State Governments are working on removing onshore barriers and to strengthening offshore deployment. Especially regarding offshore wind energy the installation target shall be updated to 20 GW (from 15) by 2030 with means of designating more offshore areas, using the 525 kV technology in an environmentally compatible way and making an amendment to the Wind Energy on Sea Act (Windenergie-auf-See-Gesetz).
Germany plans to continue participating in the IEA Wind TCP, and German institutions intend to take part in prolonged and new research tasks within the next term.
Furthermore, Germany supports co-operation on European level by providing input to the SET-Plan Implementation Plan for offshore wind energy and by participating in the SETWind project. Currently, work is ongoing to contribute to the European Clean Energy Transition Partnership (CETP) candidate and its strategic research and innovation agenda.