Financial support for wind growing but far less than for coal and nuclear

Financial support for renewables generation in Germany -- in the form of premium payments required by law of all consumers for green power -- has increased in the last year to around EUR 2.2 billion for 2004, compared to EUR 1.9 billion in 2003, according to estimates from the electricity federation. Wind power is forecast to account for 66% of renewables generation in 2004. While the level of state aid for renewables has increased, placing it mid-level when compared to other fuels, the sector still receives less than the EUR 3.041 billion in direct state aid given to the coal industry. Furthermore, the support is far less than the nuclear industry is believed to receive in indirect aid, which solar organisation Eurosolar notes includes the use of tax-free reserves of over EUR 25 billion held for decommissioning and radioactive waste disposal, which the nuclear industry may invest as it pleases.