With a share of almost 35 percent, wind power was for the first time the “most important” source of electricity generation in Germany in the first quarter (Q1) of 2020, the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis) said on Thursday.
At the same time, more electricity was generated from renewable energy sources and fed into the grid in Germany than from conventional energy sources, such as coal and nuclear energy, in Q1 for the first time, according to provisional results published by Destatis.
“In our opinion, the decline in conventional power generation in the first quarter is due to both a good wind supply and a coronavirus-induced drop in demand, which particularly affected the profitability of coal-fired plants,” Robert Diels of r2b energy consulting told Xinhua on Thursday.
With a total of 72.3 billion kilowatt-hours, the amount of electricity generated from renewable sources increased by almost 15 percent year-on-year to a share of 51.2 percent of the total amount of electricity fed into the grid in Germany, according to Destatis.
The increase was the largest (21 percent) for electricity from wind power, which was “due mainly to a very windy quarter,” Destatis noted.
The amount of electricity generated from conventional energy sources was down by almost 22 percent. The share of coal-generated electricity decreased “significantly” by 33.4 percent year-on-year, according to Destatis.
In January, the German government agreed on a shutdown plan for coal-fired power plants in Germany by 2038 at the latest. The first power plant units are to be taken off the grid by the end of this year.
Germany “is about to leave the fossil age with big steps,” said Minister of Finance Olaf Scholz when presenting the plan and added that the dismantling of old energy producers would need to be matched with the expansion of renewable energies in order to cover future demand.