BNetzA Information on Wind Power and Biomass Growth After EEG Amendment Based on New Installation Register for Renewables

Since the amendment of the Renewable Energy Sources Act that became effective on 1 August 2014 (EEG 2014) not only PV power plants but all renewable power plants have to be registered with the Federal Network Agency (BNetzA). The register shall help to monitor and steer renewable growth in line with the EEG 2014. Based on this, BNetzA has published information for wind power and biomass growth for the period August to November 2014.

1. Wind Power Growth

From August to November 2014 wind power plants with a total capacity of 1,439 MW were commissioned, while 143 MW were decommissioned, leading to net growth of 1,296 MW.

2. Biomass Growth

In the same period new biomass power plants with a total capacity of 15 MW were commissioned.

Under the EEG 2014 support for electricity from biogas generated in plants with a capacity of more than 100 kW is only granted for the share of electricity produced in a calendar year that equals 50% of the installed capacity (see Section 47 para 1 EEG). In return a flexibility bonus of EUR 40 per kW for providing flexible capacity can be claimed (see Section 53 EEG 2014). The (higher) flexibility bonus paid under the EEG 2012 continues to be paid for plants that started operations before 1 August 2014, but certain limitations apply, one of which is a limit for the expansion of existing capacity of 1.350 MW in total (see Section 54 EEG 2014 in connection with Annex 3). According to BNetzA new capacity counting towards this limit amounted to about 6 MW by November 2014.

3. PV Growth

As already reported PV growth in the twelve month from December 2013 to November 2013 amounted to 1,953 MW.

4. Importance of Registration

Pursuant to Section 25 para. 1 EEG financial support according to the EEG can only be claimed if renewable power plants are registered with BNetzA in accordance with the Ordinance on a Register of Installations for Generation of Electricity from Renewable Energies and Mine Gas (AnlRegV), which also entered into force in August 2014 (for more information on the obligation to register and exceptions, please see here).

The EEG 2014 also introduced expansion targets, so-called “corridors” (Ausbaupfade), for the support of the individual renewable resources under the EEG so as to reach steady growth in line with the growth targets for all renewables laid down in Section 1 para. 2 EEG and avoid sharp cost increases. The EEG aims for annual growth of up to 2,500 MW for wind power. This is a net amount, which means that capacity that is permanently decommissioned will be deducted from new capacity added. For solar power and biomass gross targets of 2,500 MW respectively 100 MW were set (cf. Section 3 EEG). To ensure compliance with these targets (corridors) so-called “breathing caps” were introduced for onshore wind power and biomass, modelled on the previously introduced “breathing cap” for solar power. “Cap” must not be misunderstood as meaning that support is really capped. Instead, the “breathing” element means that financial support for onshore wind power and biomass under the new EEG 2014 is reduced quarterly (not annually) as of 2016 depending on newly commissioned capacity. This so-called degression can increase and for PV and onshore wind power decrease if growth exceeds or falls below the targets. For PV the fact that growth in the twelve months from December 2013 to November 2014 “only” amounted to 1,953 MW meant that the monthly degression for the period January to March 2015 is only 0.25% instead of the regular monthly degression of 0.5% (Sec. 31 EEG 2014).

Source: Federal Network Agency

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