Pilot region for energy and transition
WindNODE encompasses all east-German German states including Berlin under the auspices of the six heads of state government. The large-scale model region contains all players and components of a complete energy system and is highly innovative in the process: today already, about 50 per cent of the local electricity mix consists of renewables and as such meets the Federal Government’s energy transition targets for 2030.
Energy transition made in north-eastern Germany
The history of the modern electricity supply started about 150 years ago, at the heart of the current WindNODE region. When Werner von Siemens presented his electric generator, he laid the groundwork for the breakthrough of electrification. Tradition compels: the WindNODE region continues to be an energy pioneer and by now covers about half of its electricity demand with renewable sources, already meeting the energy transition targets that the Federal Government set for 2030. Some states already have an even higher share of renewables thanks to heavy use of water power. What is unique for our region is that green electricity is mainly generated by volatile sources (sun and especially wind), but despite extended periods of low wind and solar power generation or strong wind fronts, the energy consumers enjoy an undiminished security of supply that is among the world’s best. The region unites all facets and players of a complete, large-scale energy system in (almost) the entire control area of transmission system operator 50Hertz. Thinly populated areas with abundant wind power capacities are linked to urban load centres and a total of about 11 million power grid connections. Here, it also becomes clear that the energy transition goes hand in hand with a far-reaching process of economic and social transformation: structural change in the Lusatia area, time-consuming planning and participation procedures for wind farms and grid development, particular energy transition costs in the form of relatively high grid fees, discussions with the ‘electrical neighbours’ Poland and the Czech Republic about so-called loop flows from wind power feed-in in eastern Germany – to name only a few. WindNODE enables a realistic outlook on the visions and challenges of the energy transition and is therefore particularly suited to be a ‘smart energy showcase’ in a region that has an almost unparalleled experience with energy and transition.