By Jeremy Deaton
On Sunday, for a brief, shining moment, renewable power output in Germany reached 90 percent of the country’s total electricity demand.
That’s a big deal. On May 8th, at 11 a.m. local time, the total output of German solar, wind, hydropower, and biomass reached 55 gigawatts (GW), just short of the 58 GW consumed by every light bulb, washing machine, water heater and personal computer humming away on Sunday morning.
Why this is considered a Big Deal:
- Germany’s $3.7 trillion GDP beats the economic output of any other country in Europe or, for that matter, any U.S. state.
- Germany was an unlikely leader in solar yet currently ranks second in photovoltaic solar capacity.
- Proves that renewables did not hurt or slow Germany’s economy.
- Shows that wind and solar can keep pace and continue to grow with the demands of an economic powerhouse.
- Germany’s smart policies have increased efficiency and democratize power generation. Individuals own over a third of the renewable energy capacity.
- Germany only sees about as much sunshine as Alaska yet renewables supply 30 percent of the country’s power.
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