Germany: 90% Renewable Power


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Categories: Solar Power

Last Week, on Sunday, for a brief, shining moment, renewable power output in Germany reached 90 percent of the country’s total electricity demand.

That’s a big deal. On May 8th, at 11 a.m. local time, the total output of German solar, wind, hydropower, and biomass reached 55 gigawatts (GW), just short of the 58 GW consumed by every light bulb, washing machine, water heater and personal computer humming away on Sunday morning. See the graph below, courtesy Agora Energiewende, a German clean energy think tank. (It’s important to note that most likely, not all of that 55 GW could be used at the time it was generated due to system and grid limitations, but it’s still noteworthy that this quantity of power was produced.)

CREDIT: COURTESY AGORA ENERGIEWENDE

Germany Trade & Invest presents its short film about Germany’s Renewable Energy Revolution, the so called Energiewende (energy transition).
Voices from science, industry, and politics outline the achievements made so far, next steps, and the opportunities the energy transition offers.

Here are a few takeaways from this milestone:

Germany is the fourth-largest economy on the planet. Germany’s $3.7 trillion GDP beats the economic output of any other country in Europe or, for that matter, any U.S. state. Sunday’s spike in renewable output shows that wind and solar can keep pace with the demands of an economic powerhouse. What’s more, the growth of clean energy has tracked the growth of Germany’s economy.

Germany is an unlikely leader in solar. Germany ranks second in installed photovoltaic solar capacity, according to the International Energy Agency. Until recently it was the world leader. It’s notable that, on solar, Germany is outpacing the United States, a country four times as populous. What’s more remarkable is that Germany sees about as much sunshine as Alaska.

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