The German government on 17 December 2003 adopted the revised German Renewables Act, which is designed to redefine the country's framework conditions for renewable energy in Germany.
The initial proposal for this legislation, which was published in August 2003, had sparked controversy between the German political and business world on the future of green energy in the country (see
EurActiv 15 September 2003
The objective of the law is to increase the share of renewable energy in power production from 6.3 per cent in 2000 to 12.5 per cent in 2010 and to a minimum of 20 per cent in 2020. This is in line with the EU target of increasing the share of renewable energy in terms of overall consumption from six to 12 per cent.
The first German Renewables Act, which was passed in April 2000, had sparked a boom in the renewables sector in the country, which is now an industry with an estimated annual turnover of eight billion euro. The German legislation is considered to be a crucial engine for EU efforts in this area and inspired similar initiatives in other countries such as Austria, France, Spain and the Czech Republic.
The draft legislation will now be discussed by the German Bundesrat [Federal Assembly - Germany's Upper House], and is expected to come into force in the spring of 2004.