Construction of new wind parks in Germany has collapsed over the past year, not least in response to growing resistance from local activists.
In the first nine months of 2019, developers put up 150 new wind turbines across the country with a total capacity of 514MW — more than 80 per cent below the average build rate in the past five years and the lowest increase in capacity for two decades.
The sharp decline has raised alarm among political leaders, industry executives and climate campaigners. The German government wants renewables to cover 65 per cent of the country’s electricity needs by 2030, a key target in Berlin’s campaign to drive down greenhouse gas emissions and help combat climate change.
It has pledged to shut down the last nuclear power plants in 2022 and phase out coal power by 2038. Without more wind turbines, Europe’s largest economy could soon face an unenviable choice: scrap the climate targets or risk running out of power.