Germany’s Energiewende, or Energy Transition, “is creating jobs, raising GDP, and attracting business,” the U.S. Environmental Defense Fund reports, despite the second-guessing the massive investment has received from some business media.
“The German example shows an energy transition can lead to overwhelmingly positive, balanced, and pervasive employment impacts,” Sopher writes, with renewable energy jobs growing from 160,500 to 367,000 between 2004 and 2010. The country’s renewable energy exports are expected to reach €47 to €69 billion by 2030, while the sector’s manufacturing profits are projected at €43 billion to €60 billion, compared to €16.4 billion in 2009.
“Criticisms of Energiewende’s costliness tend to lack perspective,” he adds. “While electricity prices are high, electricity bills are as affordable as those in the United States. Renewables have caused electricity prices to rise in Germany over recent years, but conventional fuels have contributed to even larger increases. And energy poverty is a serious issue, but relative to other developed countries, Germany has fared favourably.”