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News : Innovation Last Updated: Nov 7, 2013 - 4:01 AM

Climate protection worth a massive €45.5bn for German firms in 2011
By Finfacts Team
Nov 7, 2013 - 3:57 AM

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Climate protection means good business for German firms and data issued on Wednesday showed that it was worth a massive €45.5bn in 2011.

Destatis, the federal statistics, reported that sales in the climate protection business exceeded for example the pharmaceutical industry, whose establishments made €39.2bn in 2011. The statistics office also reported that turnover in climate protection products accounted for 68% or the largest share of total turnover in products for environmental protection - - €66.9bn.

A survey of 9,000 German firms found that the domestic solar industry accounted for the lion's share in revenues, not least due to generous state subsidies while businesses focusing on higher energy efficiency, including the production and installation of heat insulation in buildings, came in second, followed by wind energy firms.

The Association of German Chambers of Industry and Commerce (DIHK) said the climate protection economy was of key importance for future growth in a nation relying so much on high-tech exports.

DIHK's Energy Change Barometer 2013 shows that at 84% of the 2,400 businesses surveyed, most energy user firms see more risks than opportunities. This can be justified by the continually rising prices on the energy and ever-present worry about the security of supply for Germany as an industrial location, as nuclear energy is phased out as a source.

The DIHK survey also shows that 25% of the industrial companies are now active in some way in moving their operations to foreign countries. Three% have already done so, 8% are currently in the process of doing so, and 14% are planning to do so.

Last month, Bloomberg reported that Germany's four electricity grid companies set the fee paid through power bills at 6.24 euro cents a kilowatt-hour next year from 5.28 euro cents now, according to a statement on the website of TransnetBW. The charge has more than quintupled since 2009, helping to make German household power bills the third-highest in the European Union. Big industrial users are largely exempt from the fee.

Nuclear power supplied about a quarter of Germany’s power before an earthquake and tsunami triggered a meltdown at the Fukushima plant in Japan in 2011. The disaster turned the German public and politicians against atomic energy. The government is now seeking to get 80% of its electricity from renewables by 2050 from about 23% now.

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