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German Cabinet Okays Renewable Energy Reforms

Posted by June 8, 2016

The German cabinet approved reforms to Germany's renewable energy law on Wednesday aimed at slowing the growth and better controlling the cost of green energy sources.
Generous green subsidies have led to a boom in renewable energy, such as wind and solar power. But the rapid expansion has pushed up electricity costs in Europe's biggest economy and placed a strain on its grid.
Under the reforms, Germany will move away from feed-in-tariffs to a competitive auction system where producers of renewable energy will only receive payments for their power if they win a tender.
This will also give the government better control over the future expansion of renewables, which currently account for around a third of Germany's electricity.
Under the proposals, the amount of onshore wind will be limited to 2.8 gigawatts per year until 2019. After that 2.9 gigawatts of capacity will be auctioned annually.
To avoid overburdening the grid, the amount of new onshore wind capacity for northern Germany will be set at a lower amount than elsewhere.
The draft law will now go to the Bundestag lower house of parliament for approval and is due to come into force at the start of 2017.

(Reporting by Caroline Copley; Editing by Madeline Chambers)

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