December 21 (SeeNews) - The European Commission on Tuesday approved the planned amendments to the German renewable energy support scheme that would introduce tenders as from January 1, 2017.
Starting next year, Germany will organise auctions to choose offshore wind projects, onshore wind installations above 750 kW, solar projects above 750 kW and biomass and biogas installations above 150 kW.
Considering the specific conditions present in the German electricity market, the government intends to hold specific auctions for each technology in order to achieve a more cost-efficient result. Biomass and biogas will compete in the same tender including new and existing installations.
At the same time, hydropower, geothermal and installations using sewage gas will continue to seek feed-in tariffs (FiTs) and will not participate in auctions because there are not enough such projects to justify holding a separate bidding process.
Germany has also pledged to test auctions that incorporate grid integration costs or tender for a specific electricity quality, the EC noted.
“The amendments to the German EEG law we approved today make sure that one of the largest renewable support schemes in the EU will be based on auctions. The decision allows Germany to organise separate auctions for different renewable energy technologies to keep its electricity grid stable, and commits Germany to test alternative auction designs for the future through pilot projects," said Margrethe Vestager, commissioner in charge of competition.