ANALYSIS: ENBW adds 53MW to portfolio to take it closer to 20% renewables target

GERMANY: The German utilities group EnBW's purchase of seven onshore wind stations from developer PNE Wind takes it a step closer to its stated aim of sourcing 20% of its total electricity generation output from renewable sources by 2020. The seven stations totalling 53MW will all be commissioned in 2010.

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The group's total generation is sourced from its own fossil and nuclear power stations as well as long-term contracts for nuclear capacity owned by other companies. In 2007 when the 20% target was set, renewables - almost entirely hydropower stations - accounted for 8.4TWh or 11.4% of EnBW's total generation of 73TWh. In 2008, renewables eased up to about 9TWh or 13% of generation of EnBW's total 70TWh. The aim is to keep the amount of non-renewables generation at about the same level, with renewables generation being added on top, according to a source at EnBW Erneuerbare Energien, the group's renewables division. This means doubling the 2007 level of renewables to about 16TWh a year by 2020.

Several wind projects purchased last year will bring the group a big step closer to achieving its expansion target. The most recent purchase of 53MW of onshore wind from PNE last December followed a previous acquisition in spring 2009 of three onshore wind stations totalling 52MW, also from PNE Wind. During the course of 2009, the EnBW Group thus raised its onshore wind station portfolio from just 28MW to 133MW, to generate around 0.3TWh.

Offshore portfolio

Meanwhile, the group now has 1.2GW of offshore wind projects in its portfolio, due to come online by 2015. These are the 50MW Baltic 1 project in the Baltic Sea, which is scheduled for commissioning in 2010, as well as the 350MW Kriegers Flak project, also in the Baltic Sea, and two 400MW projects in the North Sea, the Hochseewindpark Nordsee and He Dreiht, both of which are currently under development.

Once all are commissioned by 2015, they will add about 4.3TWh a year in addition to the 133MW onshore fleet's 0.3TWh. Two hydro station projects currently under way will contribute another 0.4TWh to total about 5TWh a year. EnBW thus has to develop or acquire renewables projects to deliver another 3TWh a year to achieve its aim. "We've got a way to go yet, and we may go beyond 20%," says the EnBW source.

In a bid to reducing the investment load of its renewables programme, EnBW has offered stakes totalling 49.9% in its Baltic 1 project to municipal energy utilities. Demand for these shares is outstripping supply, so it is giving priority to municipal energy companies in which it has stakes or with which it has had long-term business connections, these being largely in its home state of Baden-Wurttemberg in south-western Germany. "The stakes are financial investments; we keep the electricity," says the EnBW source. Financial partners could also be taken on board for other projects, the source adds.

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