Despite billions spent, Germany backs away from Green Energy

After seventeen years and nearly 200 million Euros later, Germany is poised to sack its Green Energy programs. It isn’t just due to German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s pyrrhic victory at the polls last month, The New York Times states that ever since Germany sacked its nuclear power plants it blew a whole in energy delivery which have cost utility customers dearly.

[R]enewable energy subsidies are financed through electric bills, meaning that Energiewende is a big part of the reason prices for consumers have doubled since 2000.

These big increases “are absolutely not O.K.,” said Thomas Engelke, team leader for construction and energy at the Federation of German Consumer Organizations, an umbrella organization of consumer groups.

The higher prices have had political consequences.

The far-right party Alternative for Germany, which won enough support in the recent elections to enter Parliament, has called for an “immediate exit” from Energiewende. The party, known by its German initials AfD, sees the program as a “burden” on German households, and many supporters have come into its fold in part because of the program’s mounting costs.

Julian Hermneuwöhner is one such voter. Mr. Hermneuwöhner, a 27-year-old computer science student, said his family paid an additional €800 a year because of Energiewende.

“But it hasn’t brought lower CO2 emissions,” he said. “It’s frustrating that we’re paying so much more, because the country hasn’t gotten anything for it.”

Germany’s green energy program, Energiewende, was implemented to replace fossil fuel-based energy ones in order to battle human-induced climate change. The result, however, is not only higher energy bills but has had no effect on Germany’s carbon emissions. However, despite these realities, stronger emissions reduction targets maybe proposed. If so, that would affect Germany’s coal and auto industries and could result in plant shutdowns.

It is about time a major country start to scale back or end Green Energy boondoggles. Despite the government largess they have been rewarded with, even subsidized industries are not immune from market pressures be it prices or other forms of energy changing in price that can not only run renewables out of business and make them politically unpopular.