Germany isn’t being coy about how it will survive without nuclear power: It’s going to funnel great wads of cash into renewables. So says state-owned development bank KfW, vowing to “facilitate renewable energy and energy efficiency investments in Germany with €100 billion (nearly $140 billion) over the next five years.”
After the Fukushima disaster, Germany committed to shutting down its nuclear plants, which had provided nearly a quarter of its electricity, by 2022. “With the decision to abandon nuclear power earlier this year, it was clear that the road ahead would be challenging,” Tobias Homann, photovoltaic-industry expert for the economic development agency Germany Trade & Invest, said in a statement. “But Germany is in a very promising position to be the first industrialized country to rely entirely on renewable energy.”
KfW said new loans and projects are targeting a range of energy areas, “including energy efficiency, smart grids, as well as wind and solar energy generation.” Last year, two in every five photovoltaic installations in Germany were KfW-financed.
“Although the spotlight has recently been on wind energy, photovoltaic energy in Germany recently made headlines for surpassing hydropower in total energy generation,” KfW said. “Photovoltaics continues to be a critical component in the energy transition, especially as grid parity is around the corner.”