Germany’s transition from fossil fuels to green energy hit a new milestone on July 25 when solar, wind, and other sources of renewable energy met 78% of the day’s energy demand, which beat the old record of 74% made in May 2014.
The record was set due to unusual weather patterns that brought a lot of wind where most of the nation’s wind turbines are located. As the turbines generated more power, utilities ramped down coal- and gas-fired power plants.
But a few days earlier, more precisely on the night of July 22, renewable energy from wind, biomass and hydropower generated close to 25 percent of Germany’s electricity. This happened despite darkness which caused a natural reduction of the solar output and no big winds.
According to Osha Gray Davidson, who is the author of the book “Clean Break” about Germany’s transition to green energy, Germany’s experience shows that solar and wind can keep the lights on even in highly industrialized nations such as Germany. In fact, 28 percent of the annual electricity usage comes from renewable sources. Davidson adds that this is quite amazing for a large industrialized country such as Germany. Hence, Germany may, with these results, be a great model for the U.S, which currently gets approximately 10 percent of its electricity from renewable energy sources.