Factstop

NEW ENERGY: WHAT'S REALLY TRUE?

There’s no doubt that renewable energy will help make the world that little bit better than it is today.
However, talk of the energy transition is still plagued by myths and preconceptions. Once and for all, let’s put the myths to bed and let the facts do the talking.

Myth #1


Renewable energy cannot cover the basic load requirements.

Fact: Renewable energies are more than just wind energy and solar power. Hydropower and biomass are perfectly capable of covering basic requirements and supplying power around the clock. What’s more, renewable energy is already generating around three times as much electricity as all the nuclear power plants in Germany combined. It will be possible to shut these down in a few years’ time without any adverse impact on grid stability and supply reliability.

Myth #2

The energy transition is about simply cutting CO2 emissions.

Fact: We can also save enormous amounts of water. Of all the water consumed in Germany, 48 percent is consumed by conventional power plants. Renewable energies, however, require much less water during system operation. Solar power and wind energy, in particular, are completely water-neutral.

Myth #3


Germany is responsible for only around 2 percent of global CO2 emissions, so it’s practically irrelevant what we do.

Fact: Responsibility doesn’t just disappear when you break it down into tiny parts. If you look not at a nation’s percentage share in global CO2 emissions but at its per-head emissions, Germany has a much bigger contribution to make to climate protection than most other countries. The average amount of carbon dioxide emitted per head of the world’s population each year is around five tons. In Germany, however, this figure is as high as 9.7 tons, making it among the world’s top ten largest producers of CO2.

Myth #4


The energy transition is too expensive and will cost us a total of around €550 billion.

Fact: This tells just half the story. While renewable energy is being expanded, less and less fuel will need to be purchased to cover the electricity demand. The savings potentially achieved through renewable energy have been calculated by Fraunhofer IWES. The researchers found that the energy transition will have recovered its investment costs by 2035 and indeed generated an extra €40 to €100 billion by 2050.

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