Last night, the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy launched the hearings of Länder and associations on the 2016 Renewable Energy Sources Act. Expanding renewable energy is one of the key pillars of the energy transition. Renewables currently cover approx. 32 % of electricity consumption, and this share is to rise to at least 80 % by 2050. The 2016 Renewable Energy Sources Act is the key instrument that will enable Germany to meet these targets in an orderly fashion. In future, the level of funding shall no longer be fixed by the state, but rather be determined on the market by way of competitive auctions.
Federal Minister for Economic Affairs and Energy Sigmar Gabriel said: "For the first time, the 2016 Renewable Energy Sources Act treats renewables as established, mature technologies and creates the basis for stabilising costs, thereby boosting public acceptance of the energy transition. On the basis of the 2016 Renewable Energy Sources Act, we will improve the integration of renewables into the market and expand their use in a targeted way. This is how we will continue to ensure the very high level of security of supply in Germany and at the same time ensure cost efficiency and diversity of market players."
Three basic concepts underpin the reform of the 2016 Renewable Energy Sources Act: The expansion of renewables will take place within the deployment corridor and will be cost-efficient, i.e. the remuneration which is required for the installations to operate economically will be paid. The auctions are to provide a level playing field for all of the players involved. This must apply across different regions in Germany and for all of the various types of players (e.g. small and medium-sized firms, energy cooperatives set up by individuals, local project developers, etc.).