Half of Germany’s electricity is produced by coal and gas power plants. However, the country is pushing for more renewable energy sources. In 2014, the share of renewables in their energy sector increased by 3 percent and fossil fuel use dropped by 7 percent. 2014 also marks the first year in decades where CO2 emissions in Germany were on the decline. Germany aims to lower electricity prices and their environmental impact with a push for renewable energy.
Germany’s economy is booming, and this typically leads to higher energy use. However, Germany managed to decrease power consumption by 3.8 percent. The reason for this is that Germany is pushing for energy efficient machines and practices in their businesses through laws and energy programs. Patrick Graichen of Think Tank told DW, “We noticed there are substantial reductions in power consumption thanks to LED technology, and businesses are actively implementing energy-saving measures.”
Because renewable energy sources are on the rise, CO2 emissions in Germany have decrease by 5 percent in only one year. Coal power plants produce a lot of CO2, but Germany is turning away from them and therefore improving their carbon emissions. However, it’s important to note that part of the decrease in CO2 emissions is because of mild weather conditions. Renewable energy sources are much better for the environment.
Germany’s energy sector has undergone a tremendous transition, and further action is on the way. Back in 2011, the Fukishima catastrophe caused Germany to turn from nuclear power plants and push for renewable energy. Renewable energy, such as wind, solar, hydroelectric, and biomass are actually cheaper than coal and gas. That’s the major reason why Germany is pushing forward. The country wants to take a more competitve stance in energy worldwide. The added benefit is that renewable energy is better for the environment.
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