Germany is pioneering an epochal transformation it calls the energiewende—an energy revolution that scientists say all nations must one day complete if a climate disaster is to be averted. The Renewable Energy Sources Act is the most important and successful instrument to promote the expansion of renewable energies in the electricity sector.
The Renewable Energy Sources Act (Erneuerbare Energien Gesetz – EEG) promotes the generation of electricity using renewable energy sources. The system has been supplemented with targets, growth corridors, breathing caps, a wider market premium support system and special rules for auto-generators.
Germany’s PV systems generated 33,193 gigawatt hours of solar electricity through the end of September 2015, according to the German Association of Energy and Water Industries. Wind power in the first nine months of 2015 has generated 52% more than it did in all of 2014. 59,006 gigawatt hours has been produced, according to the same source. 114,723 gigawatt hours of electricity in Germany came from renewable sources in the first nine months of 2015, which was almost double the amount produced from nuclear sources.
Renewable Energy Revolution in Germany -Targets
Nuclear power produces nearly 20% of Germany’s energy, but in July 2011 (three months after Fukushima Nuclear disaster in Japan) the German government vowed to shut down its nuclear capability within 10 years. Not just that, but to replace it with renewable energy, cut greenhouse-gas (GHG) emissions by 40% by 2020 and 80% by 2050, ensure renewables contribute 80% of Germany’s energy by 2050.
Under the plan, electricity-generating companies will be required to cut CO2 emission by an additional 22 million metric tons. The plan also sets new CO2 targets for car makers and pledges up to €6 billion ($7.46 billion) in tax incentives for retrofitting buildings with better thermal insulation and making large appliances more energy-efficient.