German Energy Portfolio Grows Smaller
Tim Echols is elected to the Georgia Public Service Commission and regulates electricity and natural gas in his state. He just returned from Germany and Brussels, where he participated in energy conferences representing Georgia and the United States.
In 2013, I made my first trip to Germany to see what “Energiewende” was all about. This German word means “Energy Transformation,” and Germany has made considerable effort to persuade the world with its message to phase out nuclear power and develop renewable energies in the power sector.
Germany’s new energy policy is a revolutionary, bold and new approach by anyone’s definition. When I came back from my first trip to Germany, I joined fellow Commissioner McDonald in approving a uniquely Georgian version that ushers in our own energy transition.
Our renewable energy policy has made Georgia one of the fastest growing solar states in the nation – without a subsidy and without a mandated Renewable Energy Portfolio. And now, after another trip to the Berlin Energy Transition Dialogue to hear the latest from the German brain trust, I still think we need to stay the course in Georgia.
First, we have something in the U.S. that Germany does not: cheap natural gas. This has made all the difference for America. Germany, hostage to Russian gas prices, has lignite coal and a vast nuclear fleet.