Vast majority in favour of more renewables

Germans agree that the use of renewable energy should be expanded. 93% of the population think that this is important, and for the majority of them it is even very or extremely important.

Population supports expansionof the use of renewable energy© BMWi; data from: Renewables Energies Agency, current as of: 9/2018

The vast majority of Germans support the energy transition. This is the result of the survey on the public acceptance of the energy transition carried out by the Renewable Energies Agency (AEE) this year. According to the survey, 93% of the population are in favour of the continuation of the energy transition – 72% think that the expanded use of renewable energy is very or extremely important, and 21% regard it as important.

It is surprising that citizens who live close to renewable energy facilities are especially open to further expansion. 83% of those with a solar farm in their neighbourhood and 69% with wind power plants in their vicinity regard power generation facilities ‘in their backyard’ as positive. Altogether, 63% of the population welcome such facilities in their neighbourhood.

This is not the case for overhead transmission lines: although 78% say that the expansion of these grids is important, only a small minority welcomes such lines in their vicinity. Only 32% of the respondents are in favour of such lines in their neighbourhood. At 36%, the majority of the population are undecided, while 30% clearly state that they reject such lines.

Climate change as number one reason

Apart from the high approval ratings of the expansion of renewables, the German population regards the following further aspects as positive: 81% say that climate protection is the major advantage of renewable energy, and 79% regard ‘clean’ energy as particularly important to ensure fairness between the generations. The fact that Germany has become less dependent on energy imports from abroad in the course of the energy transition is an important advantage in the eyes of 68% of the population. 59% also believe that the expansion of renewable energy strengthens Germany as a base for business activities.

The high approval ratings of more than 90% have been stable for many years; they show that Germans attach particular importance to climate protection and the energy transition. Since 2007, the representative survey on the level of public acceptance has been carried out by the AEE annually throughout Germany. You can find the results as diagrams on the AEE’s website.