Publisher: juwi AG
juwi’s Cost-Cutting Measures Save Private Electricity Consumer up to Six Billion Euro
- Executive board advises against German Environment Minister’s plans on the German power supply and presents its own concept
- Company is well equipped for future business and plans to continuously grow at a moderate pace
Frankfurt / Wörrstadt - The battle for the German energy transition goes into its final phase. At its annual press conference, the executive board of juwi, one of the leading project developers for renewable energies, strongly criticized the German government’s plans for the further expansion of renewable energies that have become publicly known as ‘electricity price brake’. "Retrospective taxes on old installations, five months without secure allowance as well as lawnmower-style cost-cutting measures would bring an entire industry to its knees, cost tens of thousands of jobs and bring the German energy transition to an abrupt halt," warned the two juwi founders and joint CEOs Fred Jung and Matthias Willenbacher. "And all this for the sake of minimal cost savings". At the press conference juwi presented alternatives: Together with other players in the renewable energy industry the company developed a concept that would save more than six billion Euros (€ 6bn) in the renewable energy apportionment – without stalling the energy transition.
"We understand that politicians are already preparing for the upcoming general elections in September. However, they should consider what impact their announcements could have on the industry", juwi CEO Willenbacher addressed German Environment Minister, Peter Altmaier and Minister for Economic Development Philipp, Rösler. "If even parts of this plan became reality, the expansion of wind energy in Germany would be cut down dramatically for many years. The energy transition would practically come to a halt", Willenbacher adds.
However, there are much more effective concepts to reduce pressures caused by the energy transition for private electricity consumers; concepts without any harmful side effects on one of the few future-oriented industries in the country. "It is about time that those benefitting from continuously dropping prices at the energy stock exchange also participated in the energy transition," demands Willenbacher. These beneficiaries are companies that are able to buy their electricity directly at the stock exchange in Leipzig. "Two years ago, these companies had to pay up to 25 percent more per kilowatt hour", Willenbacher calculates and asks: "Why should the private electricity consumer suffer due to the exorbitant profits of big business?"
Therefore, it is juwi’s basic demand to distribute the costs and savings of the energy transition evenly and fairly between private consumers and businesses. Additionally, it is juwi’s opinion – as well the view of other companies in the renewable energy sector – that owners of conventional power plants must appropriately participate in the costs for environmental damage by means of a special fuel tax. The conventional power generation industry must also appropriately participate in the costs for the still undefined issues of secure nuclear waste storage. Parallel to this, clean electricity generated by renewable energies should be exempt from the anti-systematic electricity tax.
juwi CEO Matthias Willenbacher also sees considerable potential for savings in the allowance scheme for wind energy turbines. "The simple adjustment of the absurdly high allowance for off-shore wind parks would relieve the renewable energy apportionment by about 1.5 billion Euros (€ 1.5 bn) a year," states the juwi CEO. For years, the two renewable energy pioneers have been criticizing the exaggerated expansion of off-shore wind parks in the North and Baltic Seas. In their opinion, off-shore projects that devour billions of Euros are the ‘true cost drivers of the energy transition’.
juwi, on the other hand, prefers quality rather than quantity – the decentralized expansion of renewable energies and the right mix of wind and solar energy. In future, this means solar parks in the North and more wind turbines in the South of Germany. "By constructing more wind turbines across the country the supply of clean electricity will become more regular. We will also save a lot of money because we do not need to expand the grid dramatically. We do not need to build up massive storage capacities either", assures us Willenbacher. To promote this development the juwi CEO advises an advancement of the allowance scheme for on-shore wind turbines. The current higher initial tariff should be replaced by a fixed tariff, he argues. The tariff rate should be determined by the quality of the wind site and should be specified by an independent wind energy yield assessment. "By applying this model, no wind site will become more expensive than today; on the contrary, many will be much cheaper instead, especially wind-intensive sites," states Willenbacher. His model would reduce the renewable energy apportionment by approximately 120 million Euros ( € 120 m ) each year.
Fit for the future with a new company structure
Whoever demands changes and new ways of thinking from others should first clean out their own backyard. "juwi precisely pursued this approach last year and implemented a new, future-oriented company structure," says juwi COO Jochen Magerfleisch. He is responsible for all organizational affairs within the executive board. "Previously, our business was divided into different technologies. These days, continents, countries and regions are in our focus. The decisive factor is the region where a project is going to be realized, as well as the customer’s requests." Customer’s requests are taken care of by a new department within juwi – the juwi Energielösungen GmbH. The new division offers intelligent storage solutions for electricity generated by its own roof top PV panels (juwi Home Power) as well as 100 percent clean electricity in a growing number of regions.
Continuous growth with solid results
juwi takes pride in the fact that all these fundamental changes did not affect revenue and profits in the last financial year. “All our staff did a fantastic job,” praises juwi CFO Martin Winter the commitment of the employees. Since Mid-2012, he has been in charge of juwi’s finances. "Last year, we installed 321 megawatts (MW) in solar- and 314 MW in wind power all over the globe. With 350 MW of installed capacity in Germany, juwi was in the pole position among all German project developers." juwi was even able to increase its performance in a difficult market environment. "With solid results," adds Martin Winter. 2013 is expected to be a good year as well. Winter: "We are counting on continued growth and want to increase juwi’s overall performance to up to 1.5 billion Euros ( €1.5 bn) by 2015. Of course we will have an eye on the revenue’. What is going to change prospectively is the percentage distribution of the different renewable energy technologies in relation to the companies’ total activities. In Germany as well as on a global scale, wind power will represent an increasing share of juwi’s activities. "Worldwide, solar power also offers tremendous growth potential," says Winter. In particular Asia is becoming increasingly attractive. Here, juwi has been active for two years now. From its office in Singapore the company serves the growing markets in Thailand and Malaysia. juwi has also founded a Japanese joint venture, ‘juwi Shizen Energy’, to develop its business in that country.
About the juwi group
juwi is one of the world’s leading specialists for renewable energies with a strong regional presence and offers project development as well as products for the energy turnaround. Our goal: 100 percent renewable energies. Our impetus: Work together to implement renewable energies economically and reliably with passion. From site selection to planning, construction and financing up to management – juwi is the competent partner for the energy turnaround with a regional focus.juwi was founded in 1996 by Matthias Willenbacher and Fred Jung in Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany. Today, the company employs more than 1,800 people in more than 15 countries and had an annual turnover of approx. 1.1 billion Euro in 2012. Company activities include mainly solar, wind and bio energy – greenfield development as well as engineering, procurement and construction (EPC). The company’s own research division develops solutions and components to make power from renewable energies even more reasonably priced. Storage technologies (e.g. juwi Home Power, the battery storage system for solar power plants), Green Buildings and wood pellets complete the portfolio. Up to date, juwi has developed more than 100 wind farms with around 650 wind turbines and an output of around 1,250 megawatts. In the solar sector, more than 1,500 solar power plants with a total output of around 1,250 megawatts were realised. Combined, these plants generate approx. 4.5 billion kilowatt hours of green energy per year; that corresponds to the annual power consumption of approx. 1.3 million households, according to German standards. In the bio energy sector, juwi has realised numerous wood pellet production plants, biogas plants and heating networks with contracting solutions. juwi has initiated an investment of more than five billion Euro in the last 16 years for the realisation of all these energy projects. The juwi group has offices in Germany, France, Italy, Spain, the Czech Republic, Greece, Poland, Bulgaria, Great Britain, India, Singapore, South Africa, Chile, the USA/Canada and Costa Rica. In Germany, juwi has subsidiaries and regional offices in several German states.
Frankfurt / Wörrstadt, March 6, 2013
Publication and Reprint free of charge; please send a voucher copy to
the juwi AG.
Attention editorial offices: For further questions please contact Mr.
Felix Wächter, Press Officer, juwi AG.
Tel: + 49 (0)6732.9657-1244
Fax: + 49 (0)6732.9657-7001
Mobil: + 49 (0)152.09 33 18 78
Press images for editorial use only
Please note: The publisher of this press release »juwi AG« is responsible for the content.