Wind farm on the Großer Feldberg: Hesse's authorities have only approved one wind turbine so far this year
Photo: IMAGO/Jan Eifert
From the point of view of the industry, the expansion of wind energy has only progressed sluggishly in the course of the year to date.
The status of the new permits is "a sign of inadequacy for the south of Germany," said the President of the Federal Wind Energy Association, Hermann Albers, to the dpa news agency.
Since the beginning of January there has not been a single newly approved facility in Baden-Württemberg, Bavaria, Rhineland-Palatinate, Saxony and Saarland.
In Hesse there is only one commitment.
That was “no less than a total failure”.
Above all, Baden-Württemberg, Bavaria and Saxony should finally act.
According to the specialist agency for onshore wind energy, 51 new turbines have been approved nationwide since January 6th.
Among them were 19 in Saxony-Anhalt, eleven in Schleswig-Holstein, eight in North Rhine-Westphalia, five in Lower Saxony, four in Thuringia, three in Brandenburg and one in Hesse.
More green electricity plays a central role in achieving climate protection goals and becoming less dependent on fossil fuels.
After approval, it still takes some time before a wind turbine is installed and connected to the grid.
The federal government had decided on comprehensive measures for faster expansion.
This includes a legal obligation to ensure that countries provide more land.
The number of wind turbines connected to the grid is expected to increase massively in the coming years.
According to preliminary figures, 551 wind turbines with a total output of 2403 megawatts were installed on land in Germany in 2022.
That was around 25 percent more output than in 2021, but not even half as much as around 2017. According to plans by Federal Minister of Economics Robert Habeck (Greens), wind turbines on land with an output of at least 10,000 megawatts are to be built every year from 2025.
Association President Albers warned: "The federal states must finally act now, otherwise they willingly put their industry at risk."
As a coastal country, it faces the historic opportunity to benefit from an upcoming hydrogen boom.
"The country should not miss this opportunity."
There has long been a north-south divide in the expansion of wind power.
In 2022, according to industry figures, Schleswig-Holstein, Lower Saxony, Brandenburg and North Rhine-Westphalia together accounted for 77 percent of the new construction.
This year, with 12.84 gigawatts, a record volume is going into the tendering rounds for onshore wind energy, the association explained.
In order to achieve expansion targets, it is essential that as much of this volume as possible is approved.