Jessica Lenz | 07/28/2021
Why is Germany perfect for wind energy?
To answer this question, we should first understand the fundamental rules of constructing the perfect wind farm and what conditions should be met.
The ideal location for a wind farm
Wind turbines should ideally be built where the wind can circulate well, for example on very flat land, on the high seas, or at some other location where there is sufficient wind. A straight surface, whether on land (onshore) or at sea (offshore), or sites at high altitude are ideally suited. Turbines should be spaced about seven rotor diameters apart so that wind can be used at maximum efficiency at all turbines. Offshore turbines are considered more efficient than onshore turbines because higher wind speeds are generated at sea than on land.
Germany’s geographic location
Geographic features of Germany consist of a land of west-central Europe, that stretches from the Alps, across the North European Plain to the North Sea and the Baltic Sea. Germany has many notable landforms, including mountains, lowlands, woodlands, rivers, islands, and lakes. The north starts at sea level and gradually rises towards the south, up until the Alps begin. It is easy to understand why the north of Germany, with its flat land and the North and Baltic Sea, is ideally suited for wind energy. Due to the Alps, the south is also a good location for constructing wind farms. Germany is known for its cold winter winds, especially in the mountains, and temperatures can drop below -30 degrees at night between November and March.
Wind energy in Germany
The land of Germany contains 14.7% of mountains where wind speed is strong and reliable, at least in the five strong months of winter. At the end of 2020, nearly 30,000 onshore turbines with a total capacity of around 55 gigawatts (GW) were already in operation across the country. The offshore sector is still quite young in Germany, with the first park going into test operation in 2009. However, in the following years, technological innovations have enabled rapid growth here as well. Turbines installed in the country’s waters accounted for about 40 percent of global capacity in 2017, making Germany the second-largest offshore wind market in the world (after the United Kingdom). In 2019, an additional 176 wind turbines were built in the North and Baltic Sea, making it the fastest-growing source of renewable energy. Even so, there are also numerous wind farms in central and northern Germany, as the flat land is ideally suited.
The amount of wind energy in Germany is about 27% of the total consumption and the amount of renewable energy in total is more than 50%. Germany remains the European leader in renewable energy and also has the largest wind farm capacity. Each new wind turbine generates an average of 10 million euros in economic activity. Therefore, Germany is the perfect location to generate wind energy.