Green Energy Use in Germany Passes 20 Percent of Total Power Mix

During the first half of 2011, Germany for the first time generated more than 20 percent of its electricity from renewable sources, a new report says. While the country’s total electricity demand remained stable during the first six months of 2011, the share generated by renewable sources increased from 18.3 percent to 20.8 percent, according to the German Association of Energy and Water Industries. That increase provides a boost to government initiatives to produce 35 percent of the country’s electricity from renewable energy sources by 2020, while phasing out all of the nation’s nuclear reactors, an aggressive target announced after the Fukushima disaster in Japan. According to the report, wind power increased to 20.7 billion kilowatt hours, or about 7.5 percent of total usage, while biomass accounted for 5.6 percent and hydroelectric energy provided 3.3 percent. But the most significant increase was for photovoltaic solar, which increased more than 76 percent since the first half of 2010, generating 3.5 percent of electricity production.