Enercon joins wind protest over 'onshore cap'

GERMANY: Enercon has announced it is putting investments of around EUR 110 million on hold this year in protest at the German government's plans for onshore wind subsidies.

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In January, the government announced proposals that could see German onshore wind energy effectively capped at 2.5GW per year by reducing support if the capacity installed exceeds this amount.

Separately, other companies protested as part of an action organised by the BWE Bundesverband Windenergie. These included Senvion, Siemens and Vestas .

In a statement, Enercon said it was staging an employee protest at the plans and announced it was halting plans to plough funds into the creation of a number of new factories. It estimated these investments would have brought in around 3,500 jobs.

The company said that staff wanted to make their own contribution to the protest, with 98% voting for the demonstration in an internal poll.

The legislation contains a so-called breathing cap being proposed by the economy ministry as part of the Renewable Energy Act reform.

Support cuts are planned alongside making the marketing of wind generation in the wholesale market obligatory. The market price is to be topped up with a wind premium.

In January, it was revealed the revised Renewable Energy Act is due to take effect on 1 August 2014, according to a economy ministry "cornerstone" paper.

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