Germany targets three new windmills a day to reach climate goals: Chancellor Scholz

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Chancellor Olaf Scholz said Germany needs to increase its pace of expanding renewable power to reach its goal of becoming climate-neutral by 2045.

To transition away from coal, oil and natural gas, Germany needs to increase electricity generation by one third by 2030 and then double that in the following decade, Scholz said in an interview with the Berlin-based Tageszeitung newspaper published on Saturday.

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“If we want to achieve the energy transition, we need more speed,” he said. “The goal needs to be to set up three to four large wind turbines in Germany every day.”

Energy has dominated Scholz’s first year in office. Germany’s fragile energy security was exposed as Russia squeezed supplies in retaliation for Berlin’s support of Ukraine following its invasion.

Europe’s largest economy has shifted to liquefied natural gas to help plug the gap, with Scholz on Saturday opening a new terminal for imports of the super-cooled fuel in Lubmin on the Baltic coast.

The squeeze also prompted Germany to extend operations of the country’s remaining nuclear power plans, but Scholz said the reactors would “definitely be shut down in the spring.”

Scholz said a number of laws were changed to speed up approvals for wind power projects, which can currently take as long as six years.

“We are facing the greatest industrial modernization in Germany since the end of the 19th century,” he said in the interview. “Nobody should underestimate this task.”

Read more: US climate envoy Kerry outlines carbon offset initiative for developing nations

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