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Statement on the energy transition by Sebastian Sipp: “Don’t wait, start”.

This guest article appeared in a slightly amended version in the energate Messenger on 06.07.2023.

The German government’s PV strategy has attracted a lot of public attention. Many became aware of the PV potential in Germany for the first time. At the same time, it is becoming clear that despite accelerated electricity grid expansion, it will not be possible to fully integrate the increasing shares of solar and wind power into the electricity grid.

Storage and sector coupling plants are therefore necessary. These plants can store the electricity quantities not absorbed by the electricity grid or convert them into green hydrogen and thus make them usable across sectors. The necessary technologies have been developed and are ready for the market. However, the hardware capacities for widespread use of these technologies are still lacking.

The opportunities for a climate-neutral industrial revolution are immense. We should (re)build a complete renewable value chain. From cell and module production as hardware for solar power generation to battery and electrolyser gigafactories. Otherwise, Germany will remain an energy importer and become a technology importer.

In concrete terms, we need instruments that better secure venture capital investments, such as KfW guarantees, subordinate shareholder loans from KfW to young technology companies, and the associated willingness to secure the purchase of raw materials. In this way, we can minimise our dependence on raw materials in the long term.

“We don’t wait, we start” should be the new motto. For the energy transition and for Germany as a business location, there could not be a better time for a climate-neutral industrial revolution.