Issue 04/2012

The German Energiewende – History, Targets, Policies and Challenges
Dr. David Jacobs
Over the past years, the German Energiewende (energy transition) has gained a lot of attention internationally. In particular, policy-makers and experts were impressed, astounded and sometimes shocked by the rapid decision of the German government to phase out nuclear power after the March 2011 accident in the Japanese power plants of Fukushima Daiichi. However, the term Energiewende implies a much larger scope of policies. With the aim to provide clarifications, this paper intends to define the term Energiewende, explain its historical context and describe the related targets and policies. In addition, the paper sheds light on the unique features of the German Energiewende in comparison to energy transitions in other jurisdictions.
Diverging Nuclear Energy Paths: Swedish and Finnish Reactions to the German Energiewende
Petri Hakkarainen, Maja Fjaestad
In Sweden and Finland, consideration of the German Energiewende is often reduced to the nuclear phase-out decision. It is precisely in the field of nuclear energy that the two Nordic countries and Germany have ended on different paths. This article charts the historical development of nuclear power in both Sweden and Finland in order to explain why they did not follow Germany in its post-Fukushima decision and whether changes in their respective positions are to be expected.
The Unequal Burden-Sharing of the German Energy Transformation
Dr. Hubertus Bardt, Judith Niehues
Over the last fifteen years, the German government has successfully encouraged the rapid adoption of renewable energy, especially wide-spread adoption of small-scale distributed generation, through the use of a feed-in tariff and associated policies and incentives. Germany’s Energiewende and the phase-out of nuclear power will entail the adoption of ever more renewable energy. While there has been clear success in the installation of renewable energy, the costs of Germany’s promotional policies are underexplored, particularly in terms of the distributional effects. This article explores these distributional effects, including the asymmetric distribution of earnings from small-scale installations accruing to private households.
The German Nuclear Phase-Out After Fukushima: A Peculiar Path or an Example for Others?
Dipl. iur. Lars Kramm
The Fukushima catastrophe dramatically changed the political discourse about nuclear energy in Germany. The use of nuclear energy, long a hotly disputed topic inside and outside the German parliamentary system, is now opposed by an over-arching crossparty alliance. On 1 July 2011, the German parliament passed a multitude of decisions to regulate a nuclear phase-out and prepare Germany, one of the world’s biggest economies, for the period after nuclear power. According to the new law, the last German nuclear power plant will go offline and shut down in 2022. The announcement and decision to phase out the use of nuclear power in Germany caused mixed responses worldwide, ranging from harsh criticism to understanding and support. Now, Germany has become the global laboratory for other governments to see if the decision leads to economic stagnation or pays off and causes another economic boom.
The Sun Shines on India? – A Review of the Implementation and Financial Continuum of the National Solar Mission
Komalirani Yenneti
Renewable energy is high on the agenda of the Indian government at present and it has gained a strong momentum through the National Action Plan on Climate Change (NAPCC) and the sub-missions of the NAPCCC, like the National Solar Mission and National Mission on Sustainable Habitat. Renewable energy sources (RES) have long been recognized for their potential as environmentally friendly, versatile and sustainable energy alternatives for both rural and urban areas in India. Of all, solar energy seems to be one of the promising renewable energy (RE) markets with its underutilized manufacturing potential and significant capacities. Millions of stand photovoltaic (PV) systems aggregating to more than 1000 MW by the end of 2012 have been installed in the country. Solar water heating systems with a collector area of 2 million m2 have been mounted in addition to 1 million solar cookers. Still, solar energy is not the most popular source of renewable energy in India, due to the high costs of the systems, as well as the issues surrounding information and awareness and financial viability. This paper explores the implementation of the National Solar Mission in India and the subsequent paradigm shift in market development by identifying the impediments to policy and financial performance and offering some suggestions for overcoming them.


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