In addition to Jens Assheuer and Irina Lucke, Jean Huby (Ocean Breeze), Markus Lesser (PNE), Tim Meyerjürgens (TenneT), Norbert Giese (GeFue) and Dr. Antje Wagenknecht (FA Wind) were re-elected. Dennis Kruse (Deutsche Windguard) and Matthias Brandt (Deutsche Windtechnik) were newly elected to the WAB board. After a break of several years, WAB founding board member Nils Schnorrenberger (bis) is now again part of the WAB board.
The WAB board and the WAB managing director would like to thank the longstanding board members Knud Rehfeldt from Deutsche Windguard and Thomas Haukje, NW Assekuranz GmbH, for their long-standing support of the innovation cluster.
The new WAB management board is committed to a revision of the currently discussed regulatory basis for onshore and offshore wind energy. "We see a clear need for improvement before the end of the year, both in the energy turnaround amendment to the Renewable Energy Act EEG and in the amendment to the Wind Energy at Sea Act," demands the newly elected WAB CEO Jens Assheuer. "The pending adjustments will decide on a weakening of the value chain in Germany and may limit the innovation potential of many domestic companies," he adds.
"Both amendments do not do justice to the expansion needs of renewable energy producers for the energy turnaround - neither for the expected electricity consumption nor with regard to the production of "green" hydrogen," says Managing Director Heike Winkler, explaining the Innovation Cluster WAB e.V.'s criticism of the legislative amendments under discussion. "The aim must be to leverage potential in sustainable energy production. The expansion caps planned in the amendments are counterproductive for the energy transition”, Winkler continues.
She emphasises the new long-term goal of legally anchoring the greenhouse gas neutrality of electricity generated and consumed in Germany before 2050. Now, she added, binding decisions are also needed quickly to speed up approval procedures for onshore wind, to make construction activities for offshore wind politically possible as quickly as possible via an additional tender, and to enshrine the long-term target of 40 gigawatts by 2040 in law before the end of the year.
In WAB's view, the energy system transformation in all its complexity requires a long-term roadmap in order to optimally coordinate developments in the various sectors and exploit synergies. It is also important to accelerate the grid expansion planned so far and to consider the much longer approval periods that have been granted in some cases. This also applies to repowering and decommissioning.
WAB also calls for "green" hydrogen to be made commercially viable from a regulatory perspective. The need for "green" hydrogen should also be reflected in the innovation tenders in the EEG. From WAB's point of view, system suitability is an important selection criterion here. So far, "green" hydrogen has not been given any practical consideration in either of the two amendments. "Putting this future topic on the back burner will prevent a separate generation market for 'green' hydrogen and will make the energy system transformation increasingly dependent on imports," comments Heike Winkler.
Further hurdles should be urgently avoided in view of the necessary expansion targets for on- and offshore wind energy. Particularly in tender design, industry criticism of the "second bid component" should be considered in order to achieve a high level of participation in the tender. For the energy system transformation to succeed, investment and operating costs of the supply industry also need be considered. Qualitative tendering criteria as well as the lottery procedure and contracts for differences are suitable for this.
Jens Assheuer: (c) private
Offshore wind: (c) WindMW Service GmbH
Bremerhaven-based WAB is the nationwide contact partner for the offshore wind industry in Germany and the leading business network for onshore wind energy in the north-west region. The association fosters the production of “green” hydrogen from wind energy. It comprises some 250 smaller and larger businesses as well as institutes from all sectors of the wind industry, the maritime industry as well as research. www.wab.net
WAB was recently awarded the silver certificate of the European Cluster Initiative again after 2018. With this recertification, WAB has successfully demonstrated that it has continuously developed its processes and instruments. The certificate is awarded by the European Secretariat for Cluster Analysis in cooperation with the "go-cluster" excellence programme of the Federal Ministry of Economics and Energy.
Hans-Dieter Sohn | Senior Communications and Marketing Manager WAB e.V. | +49 173 2382802 | hans.sohn @ wab.net