Renewables Account for around 32 Percent in 2016

Record offshore wind power production

© Zentrum für Sonnenenergie- und Wasserstoff-Forschung Baden-Württemberg (ZSW)

© Zentrum für Sonnenenergie- und Wasserstoff-Forschung Baden-Württemberg (ZSW)

Renewable energies are expected to cover 32 percent of the gross amount of electricity consumed in Germany in 2016. The Centre for Solar Energy and Hydrogen Research Baden-Württemberg (ZSW) and the German Association of Energy and Water Industries (BDEW) arrived at this figure in an initial estimate. According to these projections, over 191 billion kWh (kilowatt hours) of electricity will have been generated from sun, wind and other regenerative sources by the end of the year.

This would mark a slight increase from the previous year. In 2015, renewable sources delivered just over 187 billion kWh, which is 31.5 percent of the gross amount of electricity consumed that year. The federal government's energy targets call for renewables' share in gross electricity consumption to arrive at 35 percent by 2020.

Offshore wind power production increased markedly, rising almost 57 percent to around 13 billion kWh (2015: 8.3 billion kWh). Onshore wind power production took a downward turn, dropping nearly 6 percent to 67 billion kWh (2015: 70.9 billion kWh), despite more wind turbines going up. This is attributable to poor wind conditions in 2016.

Land-based wind power remains the strongest source of renewable energy with a share of almost 35 percent of electricity generated from renewables, followed by photovoltaic (PV) power, which accounted for 20 percent.

Prof. Frithjof Staiss, Managing Director of ZSW, says, "The current figures show that the Energiewende remains on track in the area of sustainable electricity generation. However, urgent action is needed in other areas.

Fossil fuel consumption is still too high, especially in the transport sector, and so are greenhouse gas emissions for that same reason. This is why policymakers, businesses and society will have to make a more determined effort to achieve climate protection targets and successfully transform the entire energy system."