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German solar energy policy literature review

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Introduction[edit]

I am currently in the beginning phase of performing an extensive literature review on all materials concerning German Renewable energy policy, especially in regards to solar power. The underlying point of this review is to gather and understand all the policies, initiatives, and programs that the German government has employed in order to push solar energy. The hope is that strong parallels can be made in order to recommend actions that the United States can take in order to produce the best climate for solar energy.

Feel free to contribute or help in any way possible.


Articles[edit]

Jacobsson, S., Lauber, V., 2006. The politics and policy of energy system transformation—explaining the German diffusion of renewable energy technology [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421504002393 (accessed 1.23.14).

  • growth history (huge social component)
  • total R&D numbers German energy (including subs)
  • good basic hist momentum renewables
  • feed-ins, incentives, eco-tax, 100,000 Roofs programm provided low-cost loans, subsidies.
  • -2003ish

Reiche, D., Bechberger, M., 2004. Policy differences in the promotion of renewable energies in the EU member states [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421502003439 (accessed 1.23.14).

  • define RES per country EU
  • kyoto target/mandated levels
  • fixed-feed in tariffs provide security for investors

Brachvogel, F., 2014. Müller: A fundamental reform of the EEG is a core responsibility for the new German Federal government for 2014 [WWW Document. URL http://www.bdew.de/internet.nsf/id/20140114-pi-mueller-a-fundamental-reform-of-the-eeg-is-a-core-responsibility-for-the-new-german-fed?open&ccm=900010020010 (accessed 1.23.14). ] [WWW Document]. URL http://www.bdew.de/internet.nsf/id/20140114-pi-mueller-a-fundamental-reform-of-the-eeg-is-a-core-responsibility-for-the-new-german-fed?open&ccm=900010020010 (accessed 1.23.14).

  • 23.4% renewables 2013


Frondel, M., Ritter, N., Schmidt, C., Vance, C., 2010. Economic impacts from the promotion of renewable energy technologies: The German experience [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421510001928 (accessed 1.23.14).

  • ~2010, recent
  • warning for those trying to mirror German policy
  • Review of EEG (Renewable Energy Sources Act)
  • tariff walkthrough
  • net cost PV
  • claims more cost effective to use ETS( European Emmissions Trading System)
  • hits jobs


Frondel, M., Ritter, N., Schmidt, C., 2008. Germany’s solar cell promotion: Dark clouds on the horizon [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421508003686 (accessed 1.23.14).

  • 2008 precursor to above art
  • more focused PV, not wind


Bechberger, M., Reiche, D., 2004. Renewable energy policy in Germany: pioneering and exemplary regulations [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0973082608603907 (accessed 1.23.14).

  • political,structural, and cognitive conditions for success
  • policies/acts since '89
  • HTDP/ETR/MAP/EECP/EP/EEG
  • explores obstacles near end


Weidner, H., Mez, L., 2008. German Climate Change Policy [WWW Document]. URL http://jed.sagepub.com/content/17/4/356.short (accessed 1.23.14).

  • GHG Emis Trends
  • CO2 chart pg367
  • culture of multi-level governance


Hoffman, W., Pietruszko, Viaud, M., 2004. "Towards an Effective European Industrial Policy for PV Solar Electricity." [WWW Document] URL http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.203.3598&rep=rep1&type=pdf (accessed 1.23.14)

  • turn of century trends
  • relatively short


Jacobsson, S., Bergek, A., 2004. Transforming the energy sector: the evolution of technological systems in renewable energy technology [WWW Document]. URL http://icc.oxfordjournals.org/content/13/5/815.short (accessed 1.23.14).

  • Germ, Sweden, Netherlands
  • inducement/blocking actors
  • stages: formative>market enlargement (economy of scale advantages)>cummulative causation
  • R&D dump w/o specific direction>vast "knowledge creation"


Jacobsson, S., Bergek, A., 2006. A Framework for Guiding Policy-makers Intervening in Emerging Innovation Systems in “Catching-Up” Countries [WWW Document]. Taylor and Francis Online. URL http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/09578810601094902#.UuEhEbQo6Uk (accessed 1.23.14).

  • evolution of innovation systems(IS)
  • German IS/arch PV pg15
  • cummulative causation, feedback loop again
  • emphasis on identifying system weaknesses to target policy
  • German case-study useful, application to dev world too simple for US?


Toke, D., Volkmar Lauber, 2007. Anglo-Saxon and German approaches to neoliberalism and environmental policy: The case of financing renewable energy [WWW Document]. Science Direct. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0016718506001837 (accessed 1.27.14).

  • UK's Renewables Obligation (RO) vs Germany's REFIT (Renewable Energy Feed-In Tariff)
  • section 2 neolib background, explaining differing euro philosophies
  • "market based scheme's" (begin section 4)
  • RO's set targets that need to be met, otherwise penalized.
  • penalties are recylced back to ROC, increasing value (but does not encourage monopolies to meet target), actual ~66% in UK.
  • greater overall risk with RO, uncertain market trends and electricity prices
  • German REFIT competition: 1. manufacturers must compete in selling. 2. Competition among devs holds costs down. 3. Fosters competition with newcomers.
  • Must buy all renewables generated


Laird, F., Stefes, C., 2009. The diverging paths of German and United States policies for renewable energy: Sources of difference [WWW Document]. Science Direct. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421509001189 (accessed 1.27.14).

  • reference many US-German policy papers @ bot
  • us larger renew resources, discounts that german public opinion is a huge factor (and Americans have similar views, Farhar source/polling)
  • similar through 70's crisis, diverge late 80's/early 90's
  • failure of top-down strats for big wind turbines
  • production tax credit in US, feed-in tariff Germany
  • less politcal stability in US, low R&D budgets (go back and compare), market volatility


Luthi, S., Wustenhagen, R., 2012. The price of policy risk — Empirical insights from choice experiments with European photovoltaic project developers [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0140988311001678 (accessed 1.27.14).

  • section two is a literature review!
  • conclusion insight policy maker


Lehr, U., Nitsch, J., Kraztat, M., Lutz, C., Edler, D., 2008. Renewable energy and employment in Germany [WWW Document]. Science Direct. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421507003850 (accessed 1.28.14).

  • employment aspect
  • net employment hardly affected w/o export of the enery
  • ntm:Lookup energy in/out of US and neighbors


Sensfub, F., Ragwitz, M., Massimo, G., 2008. The merit-order effect: A detailed analysis of the price effect of renewable electricity generation on spot market prices in Germany [WWW Document]. Science Direct. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421508001717 (accessed 1.28.14).

  • merit-order effect
  • complex sim
  • short-term net profit consumers, a lot of future if's


Menanteau, P., Finon, D., Lamy, M.-L., 2003. Prices versus quantities: choosing policies for promoting the development of renewable energy [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421502001337 (accessed 1.28.14).

  • price-based versus quanity based
  • equal in ideal situations
  • feed-in tariff>bidding systems
  • quota-based green certs


Wiser, R., Barbose, G., Holt, E., 2011. Supporting solar power in renewables portfolio standards: Experience from the United States [WWW Document]. Science Direct. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421510008499 (accessed 1.28.14).

  • RPS most common in US
  • Wind most popular tech w/o solar set asides
  • growth of PV seen primarily in states with set asides


Huenteler, J., Schmidt, T., Kanie, N., 2012. Japan’s post-Fukushima challenge – implications from the German experience on renewable energy policy [WWW Document]. Science Direct. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421512001589 (accessed 1.28.14).

  • another energy crisis spurs new policy
  • short, does not add much


Taylor, M., 2008. “Beyond technology-push and demand-pull: Lessons from California’s solar policy,”[WWW Document]. Science Direct. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0140988308000856 (accessed 1.28.14).

  • page 9,13.
  • R&D, RPS, establishing value carbon
  • need for gov't


Van Benthem, A., Gillinghan, K., Sweeney, J., 2008 "Learning-by-doing and the optimal solar policy in California." [WWW Document]. Science Direct URL http://piee.stanford.edu/cgi-bin/docs/publications/Learning-by-Doing_and_the_Optimal_Solar_Policy_in_California.pdf (accessed 1.28.14)

  • learning by doing (LBD) quantization of market failures
  • optimal subs lead to increase in eco eff.
  • ultimately lead to self-sufficient solar ind. (potentially)


Grau, T., Huo, M., Neuhoff, K., 2012. “Survey of photovoltaic industry and policy in Germany and China.” [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421512003345 (accessed 1.30.14).

  • up to 31% G now, 71% max
  • G: R&D<<deployment funding
  • G would benefit from positive global vision PV
  • ntm: RR


Margolis, R., Kammen, D., 1999. “Underinvestment: The Energy Technology and R&D Policy Challenge.” [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencemag.org/content/285/5428/690.short (accessed 1.30.14).

  • old ~1999
  • not particularly useful, short


Sherwood, L., 2007. 'U.S. Solar Market Trends [WWW Document]. URL http://irecusa.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/05/ASES-Solar-Market-Trends-revised.pdf. (accessed 1.29.14)

  • cali, nj largest US
  • ~2009 for US
  • installation, capacity, growth numbers and figures


Fthenakis, V., Mason, J., Zweibel, K., 2009. “The technical, geographical, and economic feasibility for solar energy to supply the energy needs of the US.” [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421508004072 (accessed 1.30.14).

  • land use, overall feasibility
  • ntm: RR
  • long-term implementation plan
  • key challenges, all figures @ end


Johnstone, N., Hascic, I., Popp, D., 2010. “Renewable Energy Policies and Technological Innovation: Evidence Based on Patent Counts - Springer.” [WWW Document]. URL http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10640-009-9309-1 (accessed 1.30.14).

  • patents 25 countries (78-03)
  • normalized for size, innovation policies, etc
  • germany only consistently T5
  • are patents best metric for inno?


Gan, L., Eskeland, G., Kolshus, H., 2007. “Green electricity market development: Lessons from Europe and the US.” [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421505002867 (accessed 1.30.14).

  • table 2/3 breakdown of methods/policies
  • basic backstories
  • great general overview of policy breakdowns


Timilsina, G., Kurdgelashvili, L., Narbel, P., 2012. “Solar energy: Markets, economics and policies.” [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1364032111004199 (accessed 1.30.14).

  • global pv 40GW by 2010
  • lcoe, general solar economics
  • definitely reread, ci


Schumacher, K., Sands, R., 2006. “Innovative energy technologies and climate policy in Germany.” [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421505002521 (accessed 1.30.14).

  • ntm: RR
  • Germany one of the largest potential CO2 emitters EU
  • carbon cost, almost all wind


Couture, T., Gagnon, Y., 2010. “An analysis of feed-in tariff remuneration models: Implications for renewable energy investment.” [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421509007940 (accessed 1.30.14).

  • 2009 feed-in tariff analysis
  • variable premium model
  • structuring models impacts levels of risk


Langnib, O., Diekmann, J., Lehr, U., 2009. “Advanced mechanisms for the promotion of renewable energy—Models for the future evolution of the German Renewable Energy Act.” [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421508007052 (accessed 1.30.14).

  • EEG focused
  • bonus model, maket mediator, retailer
  • value-added chain


Bhandari, R., Stadler, I., 2009. “Grid parity analysis of solar photovoltaic systems in Germany using experience curves,” [WWW Document]. Science Direct. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0038092X0900125X (accessed 2.3.14).

  • extrapolated price curves to 2060
  • section three economic analysis (useful, rr)
  • grid parity, breakevens
  • 2009ish


Lorenz, E., Hurka, J., Heinemann, D., Beyer, H.G., 2009. “Irradiance Forecasting for the Power Prediction of Grid-Connected Photovoltaic Systems.” [WWW Document]. URL http://ieeexplore.ieee.org/xpls/abs_all.jsp?arnumber=4897348 (accessed 2.3.14).

  • Interesting, not useful


Lipp, J., 2007. “Lessons for effective renewable electricity policy from Denmark, Germany and the United Kingdom.” [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421507002091 (accessed 2.3.14).

  • 2006
  • rr, great gen overview (Denmark, UK, Germ)
  • momentum


Rowlands, I., 2005. “Envisaging feed-in tariffs for solar photovoltaic electricity: European lessons for Canada.” [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1364032104000243 (accessed 2.4.14).

  • 2006
  • feed-in tariff case study
  • focuses primarily on feasibility of FIT for Canada


Vleuten, F., Stam, N., van der Plas, R., 2007. “Putting solar home system programmes into perspective: What lessons are relevant?” [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421506001686 (accessed 2.4.14).

  • home systems
  • rural electrification
  • interesting, npu


Truffer, B., Vob, J., Konrad, K., 2008. “Mapping expectations for system transformations: Lessons from Sustainability Foresight in German utility sectors.” [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0040162508000681 (accessed 2.4.14).

  • sustainability foresight/projections
  • Decentrilization>Integration>Service Orientation


Hendry, C., Harborne, P., Brown, J., 2010. “So what do innovating companies really get from publicly funded demonstration projects and trials? innovation lessons from solar photovoltaics and wind.” [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421510002788 (accessed 2.4.14).

  • Rand review, DT's
  • low-end>high transition


Rio, P., Mir-Atrigues, P., 2012. “Support for solar PV deployment in Spain: Some policy lessons.” [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1364032112003395 (accessed 2.4.14).

  • spain review, FIT


Sovacool, B., 2009. “The importance of comprehensiveness in renewable electricity and energy-efficiency policy.” [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421508007556 (accessed 2.4.14).

  • four favored policies: elim. subs, accurate pricing, raise public awareness, pass FIT
  • 3.2, rr
  • budget track


Peters, M., Schmidt, T., Widerkehr, D., Schneider, M., 2011. “Shedding light on solar technologies—A techno-economic assessment and its policy implications.” [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421511005775 (accessed 2.4.14).

  • PV and CSP (concentrates solar power)
  • comparison to LCOE
  • comp around 2020
  • go back to [31]



Mendonca, M., Lacey, S., Hvelplund, F., 2009. Stability, participation and transparency in renewable energy policy: Lessons from Denmark and the United States [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S144940350900006X (accessed 2.11.14).

  • great U.S policy history (ITC, PTC, all credits, drops, reduction rates)
  • need consistency
  • sees FIT as almost neccesary


Butler, L., Neuhoff, K., 2008. Comparison of feed-in tariff, quota and auction mechanisms to support wind power development [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0960148107003242 (accessed 2.11.14).

  • wind power focus
  • interesting analysis of RE policy, no solar specifics


Klein, A., Held, A., Ragwitz, M., Merkel, E., Pfluger, B., 2007. Evaluation of different feed-in tariff design options: Best practice paper for the International Feed-in Cooperation.

  • thorough design apporaches
  • comparison of all EU countries
  • adjustable tariff based on growth


Lesser, J., Su, X., 2008. Design of an economically efficient feed-in tariff structure for renewable energy development [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421507004983 (accessed 2.11.14).

  • two-part proposed FIT (capacity payment and energy payment)
  • attempt to avoid overcompensation
  • rr



Cory, K., Couture, T., Kreycik, C., 2009. Feed-in tariff policy, design, implementation, and RPS policy interactions [WWW Document]. URL (accessed 2.12.14).

  • two methods of return: LCOE (RE generation), estimating value
  • fixed price vs premium (most fixed)-creates stable projections for investors
  • smart payment differentiation
  • addresses FIT RPS conflicts in US!!!
  • sources pg 9 for fixed vs competitive solicitation articles
  • few fits in US
  • rr


Mitchell, C., Bauknecht, D., Connor, P.M., 2006. Effectiveness through risk reduction: a comparison of the renewable obligation in England and Wales and the feed-in system in Germany [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421504002411 (accessed 2.11.14).

  • price, volume, and balancing risk
  • 2006


Mabee, W., Mannion, J., Carpenter, T., 2012. Comparing the feed-in tariff incentives for renewable electricity in Ontario and Germany [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421511008676 (accessed 2.11.14).

  • subtly highlights benefits of overlying policy/direction
  • no binding Canadian/NA goal for renewables, all individual
  • necessity of degression of FIT pricepoint
  • 2012


Busgen, U., Wolfhart, D., 2009. The expansion of electricity generation from renewable energies in Germany: A review based on the Renewable Energy Sources Act Progress Report 2007 and the new German feed-in legislation [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421508006526 (accessed 2.11.14).

  • not much new
  • slightly dated report


Williges, K., Lilliestam, J., Patt, A., 2010. Making concentrated solar power competitive with coal: The costs of a European feed-in tariff [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421510000777 (accessed 2.11.14).

  • CSP: Sahara>Europe
  • interesting, not particularly useful


Solangi, K.H., Islam, M.R., Saidur, R., Rahim, N.A., Fayaz, H., 2011. A review on global solar energy policy [WWW Document]. URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1364032111000220 (accessed 2.11.14).

  • good overview US, Canada, Germany, Spain, France, etc
  • rr



Search Terms (for my use)[edit]

  • german solar policy (Google Scholar)
  • german energy policy (Google Scholar)
  • united states energy policy (Google Scholar)
  • germany photovoltaic (google scholar)
  • united states germany solar policy (google scholar)
  • german solar lessons (Google Scholar)