German state already has 120 percent renewable power
The North German state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern along the Baltic produce more green electricity than it consumed last year, making it the leader ahead of Schlweswig-Holstein.
Last week, we reported that the state of Schleswig-Holstein on the border to Denmark north of Hamburg could produce as much renewable electricity this year as it consumes, and although there was a lively discussion in the comments, no one pointed out what we missed: that would make the state second behind neighboring Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, bordering the Baltic Sea and Poland just north of Berlin.
Our colleagues at renewable energy agency AEE sent us a link to this announcement (in German) from March, showing that renewable power production in the state grew by more than 30 percent year over year from 6.3 TWh in 2012 to 8.3 TWh in 2013 – equivalent to 120 percent of the state’s power consumption.
This is probably the first time that any German state has been more than 100 percent renewable and its power supply in a net annual calculation.
The weather was a huge factor. Onshore wind power production alone grew from 3.5 TWh in 2012 to 4.7 TWh in 2013 in the state. It is also worth pointing out that both Schleswig-Holstein and Mecklenburg-Vorpommern are rural states with a lot of land and low population density. The latter has a population of around 1.6 million people, and the largest city – Rostock – as only around 200,000 people.
For the nearby city of Berlin – with a population of around 3.5 million – to also become 100 percent renewable in its power supply in a net calculation, rural states such as Brandenburg and Mecklenburg-Vorpommern would thus have to go far beyond 100 percent renewable. Fortunately, there are such goals, such as 300 percent renewable in Schleswig-Holstein.
The website linked to above is from the Social Democrat party in the state, and they openly criticize their fellow SPD member Industry Minister Gabriel. The SPD press release from Mecklenburg-Vorpommern ends with the sentence: “In particular, we reject all rules that call into question citizen and community projects.” (Craig Morris)