New and efficient onshore wind turbines deliver the cheapest green power, but a ceiling from a two-year-old settlement blocks setting up more.
Et ceiling from a two year old political agreement threatens to put an end to the development of the very cheapest form of green energy, wind turbines on land. This is stated in a new note from the Ministry of Climate Change.
With the Energy Agreement of 2018, a broad majority decided that by 2030, Denmark must have a maximum of 1,850 wind turbines standing on land. This was done under pressure from the Danish People's Party. The ceiling was set based on calculations of when the old mills would have served their conscience. The ceiling was expected to be met without further action.
It was based on the fact that the many wind turbines set up in the years after 1995 would have a service life of about 28 years. It has now proved to be wrong. The latest analyzes estimate the average lifespan to 35 years. Some mills may even be 50 years old.
Not 1,850, but 3,900 mills
If the current plans for setting up new turbines are maintained, there will be just over 3,900 onshore wind turbines in operation in 2030, exactly twice as many as the agreement's maximum. According to the political agreement, this means a stop for expansion with new onshore wind turbines.
“If the reduction of onshore wind turbines does not follow the plan, procurement of new onshore wind will be postponed until a sufficient number of onshore wind turbines has been reduced,” the agreement states.
But that would be a “mole-like approach to the green transition”, says climate spokesman Ruben Kidde from Radical Left.
“We need to set up the new turbines that can produce more green power than the old ones. We need all the green energy we can get, ”he says, stressing that it also makes no sense to take down old, but well-functioning turbines.
Radical Left will drop the ceiling and instead leave it up to the municipalities to grant or deny permission for new mills. Setting up turbines at sea is significantly more expensive than onshore wind.
“It's not attractive, not at all in an economic crisis like now,” says Ruben Kidde.
According to CEO Jan Hylleberg of the interest organization Wind Denmark, the ceiling belongs to “a bygone era”.
“If the tenders are canceled, one must assume that the green conversion is stalled or at least in gear,” he says.
The Climate Council recommends land turbines
65 percent of existing mills have been running for such a long time that their grants have expired, and today they manage without support. The politicians had hoped that the new and efficient onshore wind turbines could be built completely without support, but even before the corona crisis, the price of both electricity and CO2quotas dropped so much that it is unrealistic.
“The parliament cannot rely on achieving the expected expansion if investors only have to earn income from selling electricity at market price,” Jan Hylleberg states.
In doing so, he emphasizes that there is still a need for the state to expand land winds by holding tenders. So does the Climate Council.
“The basis for the transition is that we must have some green power. Offshore wind turbines are still more expensive than onshore turbines, which are among the cheapest measures we can implement, ”says DTU professor and member of the Climate Council Poul Erik Morthorst.