Grid&Storage in Germany

German Electricity Grid and Storage

The Energiewende of Germany needs a restructuring of its electricity distribution system and new storage capacities

The Energy Mix of a country is a political policy statement, or actual situation, concerning the range of electricity-generating energy sources used by that country. Germany has recently announced a phasing out of its nuclear reactors. It proposes an increase in renewable energies to make up the shortfall, to avoid an increase in reliance on fossil fuels.

The energy mix in Germany in 2014: (in Terawatt-hours)

Energy source Generated power (TWh) Percent of total Change over 2000
Coal 264.8 43.2% -7.3%
Natural gas 58.3 9.5% +1.0%
Fossil oil 6.0 1.0% 0.0%
Nuclear 97.1 15.8 -13.7%
Renewable 160.5 26.1% +19.6%
Other 27.3 4.4% +0.4%
Total 614 100% +6.5%

Energy source Generated power (TWh) Percent of total Change over 2000
Fossils 341.2 54.3% -5.7%
Nuclear 97.1 15.5% -14.0%
Renewable 162.5 25.9% +19.3%
Other 27.0 4.3% +0.4%
Total 627.8 100% +8.9%
Net Export 35.6 5.7% +5.8%

Non-renewable Energy (2014)

Energy source Generated power (TWh) Percent of total Relative change over 2000* Real change over 2000 (Twh)
Coal 274.4 43.7% -6.8% -17.0
Natural gas 61.1 9.7% +1.2% +11.9
Fossil oil 5.7 0.9% -0.1% -0.2
Total 341.2 54.3% -5.7% -5.3

* Change in percentage of total electricity production from this source

Renewable Energy (2014)

Energy source Generated power (TWh) Percent of total Relative change over 2000* Real change over 2000 (Twh)
Wind 57.3 9.1% +7.5% +47.8
Biomass 43.3 6.9% +6.6% +51.7
Photovoltaic 36.1 5.7% +5.7% +36.1
Hydropower 19.6 3.1% -1.2% -5.3
Domestic waste 6.1 1.0% +0.7% +4.3
Total 162.4 25.8% +20.8% +124.6

* Change in percentage of total electricity production from this source

Data Source: Arbeitsgemeinschaft Power Generation 1900-2016

German electricity generation

Since the introduction of the government-led initiative known as the Energiewende (‘Energy Transition’) in the early 2000s, German has seen a remarkable improvement in its energy policies by stages, and the results so far are impressive. the ambition is to eliminate both nuclear and fossil fuel dependence as early as possible, while ensuring the German economy as a whole benefits from this more sustainable system.

The German Power Generation Energy Mix in 2015

Energy Source Generated Power /TWh Percent of the total
Anthracite 117.8 18.2
Brown coal 155.3 24
Total coal 273.1 42.2
Methane 56.9 8.8
Other 31.7 4.9
Total fossil and other 361.7 55.9
Nuclear 91.2 14.1
Renewables 194.1 30
Total 647 100
Renewable energy Power Generation in Germany 2015

Energy Source Generated Power /TWh Percent of the Total
Wind 86.1 13.3
Biomass 49.8 7.7
Photovoltaic 38.2 5.9
Hydro 19.4 3.0
Total 193.5 30

Data from the BDEW Analysis Report for 2015: 21.12.15, strom-report.de

As renewables became more established, targets became more ambitious. For example, in 2000 the target of percentage of total electricity generated by renewables in Germany for 2020 was set at 20% (exceeded in 2011). In 2009, the 2020 target was raised to 30% (exceeded in 2015). By the publication of the federal ‘Energy Concept’ plan in 2010, it was pushed up to 35%. This looks likely to be surpassed as well. The Energy Concept itself expects more than 38%, and some industry pundits even 47% renewables by 2020.