CCEP is hosting Andreas Loeschel, chair of the Energy Expert Commission of the German Government to monitor energy transformation, and Professor of energy economics at the University of Muenster.
The German government aims to deeply reduce carbon dioxide emissions by increasing renewable energy to 60 per cent of total energy supply by mid-century, and by drastically reducing total energy consumption.
Achieving these ambitious goals could have significant economic and social costs, and poses challenges for policy design and practical implementation. The Germany’s support for renewables through long-term feed-in tariffs is effective, but not efficient. EU emissions trading scheme are not high enough to trigger fuel substitution. In energy efficiency, large gains were made since the early 1990s but in recent years annual improvements were at only half the rate required to achieve the targets. Germany’s industrial energy costs remain competitive and there is no structural shift away from energy-intensive industries. To succeed, the Energiewende will need clearer priorities and a hierarchy of the many separate goals.
Data and analysis is available from the monitoring commission’s reports.
Many of these issues are relevant to Australia’s efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and transition in Australia’s energy system, and especially the current policy debate over renewable energy.
Prof Loeschel is giving public talks and industry/government roundtables at ANU, University of Melbourne, University of Queensland and University of New South Wales. A recording of his ANU lecture will be available here. Prof Loeschel gave an interview with ABC TV.
Professor Loeschel’s visit is arranged by the Centre for Climate Economics and Policy at Crawford School, with funding from the German government.