BBC News German tariffs make green energy too expensive to store

17 Фев 2014 | Author: | Комментарии к записи BBC News German tariffs make green energy too expensive to store отключены
Audi e-gas

German tariffs make energy too expensive to store

By McGrath Environment correspondent, BBC

A Power to Gas prototype is being at this facility in Stuttgart


Researchers in Germany who are on ways of storing renewable say their plans are being by feed-in tariffs.

The subsidies encouraged thousands of householders to energy producers by investing in and wind power.

But one leading told the BBC that these tariffs make efforts to green electricity uneconomic.

this problem he says is key to the of sustainable energy.

Germany a system of feed-in tariffs for wind and other renewable back in 2000. The law guarantees to the grid and a subsidy payment for 20

Fishy batteries

A number of technologies are being tested as a of storing energy from the and sun. One idea is to pump uphill using renewable and then letting it flow to drive a turbine when is no wind.

Another idea that was in Germany involved storage freezing fish below the temperatures when the renewables working. When the green wasn t available, the power was off and the deeply frozen fish allowed to warm up to the optimum temperature, thereby acting as a of battery.

There are now 1.3 million farmers and small co-operatives green energy. In 2012 supplied 22% of the country s electricity

But the growth of renewables has been by the intermittent nature of the sun and wind.

On a Sunday in June this solar and wind provided 60% of s power needs. So much was being produced that prices were for a time in the

Gas to the grid

With the German accelerating the phase out of nuclear in the of the Fukushima disaster, finding a way of excess renewable energy is as a crucial for the success of the Energiewende. as the transition is called.

One of the most technologies is a system called which converts green into both hydrogen and The technology has been developed at the for Solar Energy and Hydrogen (ZSW) in Stuttgart.

Electricity the grid drives a process of that creates the hydrogen and from water. Carbon is then added to the hydrogen creates synthetic methane can be pumped into the gas distribution It can be used for heating or to make

According to the scientist behind the Power-to-Gas has some major over other ideas are being tested.

The Power-to-Gas facility not only green energy but takes of carbon dioxide as well

If you to store energy over a time, then I think a energy carrier is the only Dr Michael Specht told BBC

The other ideas such as water or large batteries, have storage times of one or two — but with this we have storage times of or months.

Dr Specht said the technology offered the best for utilising renewable energy in

It is a complicated situation, but I think is no other solution to renewable storage and mobility — it is the way we can go.

But he says there will to be some significant changes to the schemes that have in a booming renewable sector in He argues that the feed-in that is paid to all producers of electricity make it too expensive to their products.

These costs are normally for the but what we are doing is not the consumption of but the storage — and if we store it we not pay the costs that the end consumer he said.

Audi e-gas

Under the current conditions the system is not economic.

for gas

One potential for Power-to-Gas is in the transport

Based on the experiments carried out in car manufacturer Audi inaugurated the s first industrial scale plant at the end of last month.

is a six megawatt facility that use to create gas for use in cars. They the energy created at this will power 1,500 new A3 vehicles for 15,000km of carbon driving every year.

Dr Specht says that the isn t the issue, it s the economics

The same that I fill in my car tank, is fed the grid by the car company Audi it is sustainable mobility, said Dr

There are a number of alternative projects being pursued, large scale lithium storage systems. The German has also recently allocated 50m (£43m) for the development of solar storage schemes.

But some are critical of the development because believe it will distort the even further.

Dr Felix from the Oeko Institute is one of s leading thinkers on the energy He says that power should only be the last

I am not in favour of such programmes, he BBC News. The power will not be when most cost from the network s perspective but attractive from the producer s

With renewables set to play a part in Germany s energy mix forward, politicians are likely to some reform of the Energiewende, the general election in September.

Dr Specht says the reform can t soon enough. Without it, the transition could fail.

I it is a process to go to sources which are renewable but I think it is not possible storage, he said.

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