Germany’s 2023 renewable power installations hit record, but wind sector lags

By Riham Alkousaa

BERLIN (Reuters) – Germany’s solar and wind power installations hit a record in 2023 but only photovoltaic energy reached the government’s targets, industry associations said, expecting continued growth this year with further reduced bureaucracy.

Germany aims to cover 80% of its electricity needs from renewables by 2030, up from 52% in 2023.

More than a million new solar power systems generating 14 GW of energy were installed in Germany last year, up 85% year-on-year, thanks to a boom in residential solar demand, putting it on track to reach Berlin’s 2030 goal, the BSW solar power association said on Tuesday.

Some 7 GW were installed in the residential segment, up 135% on the year and around half of total installed capacity. Around 31%, or 4.3 GW, came from solar parks, up 40% compared to 2022, BSW added.

BSW expects demand to grow further this year, citing a survey showing more than 1.5 million home owners plan to install a solar system on their roof.

“We expect a sustained solar boom in 2024,” BSW head Carsten Koernig said in a statement, calling for a reduction in bureaucracy such as easing access to suitable locations for parks.

In the wind sector, awarded tenders also reached a record high last year, at around 6.4 GW, but failed to meet the government’s target of annual onshore installed capacity of 10 GW by 2030, wind power association BWE said last week.

Laws to reduce bureaucracy in the sector are still lacking, and new bills approved last year had not been fully effective yet, BWE added.

“If we can now quickly set the course for approvals, nature conservation and repowering, 2024 will be even more successful,” BWE head Baerbel Heidebroek said in a statement.

(Reporting by Riham Alkousaa; Editing by Jan Harvey)