Germany divides its renewable energy consumption into six categories. Hydropower, wind energy, solar energy, geothermal energy, biomass and waste. The country also consumed more oil than coal in 2015, according to the AGEB's Energy Consumption Report of 2015. The PDF is available to read through, to see how far Germany is from ditching non-renewable sources of energy and how they move into the renewable energy age.
In the report it is stated:
In 2015, the use of renewable energy in private households, industry as well as the trade, commerce, and service sector increased by 6.2% whch was primarily due to the cooler weather (albeit still at a comparably low level)
When it comes to the use of renewable energy in electricity production, wind energy exhibited by the far the greatest increase with a plus of 50% compared to 2014 which was due to the strong wind year and the additionally installed capacity of 6GW
Reuters says coal still produces 40 percent of the current energy being produced in Germany and cuts in the sector will equal unemployment in the industry. Now a draft document to be processed through government will make them stick to an outline of increasing green energy production by 75% by 2030. Today, Reuters has released a report saying that Germany could be leaving coal-fired power production before 2050. The government of Germany is also reportedly supposed to decide on a climate action plan for 2050 and must outline their renewable energy portfolio. Recently, critics have doubted Germany will be lending themselves to photovoltaic cells as a source of energy as freely as forward-thinking countries like Australia, for example.
By March of this year (2016), Belgium follows a list of European territories who are closing their coal powered power stations. EcoWatch confirms Belgium successfully closed down their Langerlo plant
Joanna Flisowska, an employee of the Climate Action Network told EcoWatch: "Ending coal power use in Belgium marks a significant step in the inevitable transition away from fossil fuels."
The rest of the world is watching as Europe tweaks its renewable energy resources and policies that pertain to them and will learn from them. Currently leading the charge in the renewable energy sources is Britain. But the other European countries are trying to get in line as well for the betterment of the environment. Engineers in the coal industry should be watching the changes in the energy sector quite closely as more and more countries decide to move towards being aligned with renewable energy sources.