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Importance of the energy turnaround

Germany’s ambitious national energy turnaround project has been an issue of intense societal debate on future power supply since 2011. How can we generate green electricity, and above all, what will it cost? Phasing out fossil fuels and nuclear energy not only offers enormous economic potential for the renewable energy industry but also gives us all the opportunity to manage the resources of future generations in a responsible way.

One of the leading technologies for implementing the energy turnaround is wind power, which currently supplies 8 percent of all electricity in Germany, putting it at the forefront of the renewable energy sector.

Wind energy is a booming industry; about 1,700 turbines were installed last year in this country. Here the state of Lower Saxony is particularly strong. About a quarter of Germany’s wind energy installations, and therefore a large part of the repowering market, lies between the North Sea and the Harz mid-range mountains.

But potential is far from exhausted; the share of wind power in the electricity mix is expected to increase to 25 percent by 2025. Reaching this goal would reduce Germany’s CO2 emissions by 20 percent. But this can be achieved only if Germany’s policies continue to provide reliable growth conditions in future and do not slow down the energy turnaround. Grid expansion and the development of new storage technologies also need to move forward.

  • Will relying on renewable energies make electricity more expensive?
  • What happens when the wind does not blow and the sun does not shine?
  • Is the energy turnaround socially equitable?

You will find detailed answers to these and other questions in the information material posted on the Erneuerbare Energiewende Jetzt! initiative’s website. [Information is available in German only.]

Infos about the onshore wind energy

Environmental protection has been a concern for all of us since well before the 2011 nuclear disaster in Fukushima. But ever since the fatal reactor accident in Japan, energy policy in Germany has greatly emphasised the rapid implementation of an energy turnaround, the Energiewende.

Generating wind power on land is a driving force behind this intention. In the past two decades, onshore wind power has emerged from a niche to become a leading renewable energy technology. Making up more than 8 percent of the power mix, it already supplies nearly half of all renewable electricity in Germany. In 2014, more than 24,867 wind turbines with an installed capacity of over 38,115 megawatts produced green power for businesses and households.

Regional value creation = a win-win situation for all
Good projects in renewable energies can benefit all parties, whether they are planners, turbine operators, or the citizens and communities involved. Constructing and operating wind turbines creates jobs.

Community-owned windfarms often assign contracts for roads, foundations and services to businesses in the region. Agricultural operations also stand to gain another source of income when a farmer becomes an “energy farmer”, and local business taxes flow into municipal coffers. Added to that, income from the leasing of land remains in the region to a large extent and strengthens local purchasing power.

Some 137,800 people were employed in the wind energy industry in Germany in 2013. A breakdown of jobs according to individual federal states showed that wind power generation was providing employment across the entire country. By 2030, as many as 160,000 people could have jobs in Germany’s wind energy industry on land.

For comprehensive information on wind power technology, please visit:

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Company brochure (german)
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4,46 MB
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fileadmin/user_upload/downloads/WestWind_Imagebroschuere_2013.pdf
Flyer operational management (only german)
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154 KB
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fileadmin/user_upload/downloads/Flyer_Betriebsfuehrung_2013.pdf
Company Brochure (english)
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4,47 MB
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fileadmin/user_upload/downloads/WestWind_Imagebroschuere_englisch_2017.pdf

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