Heads of state visited Siemens Gamesa:

“We will only reach our targets if politicians, society and the industry pull together.”

Allborg-Cuxhaven / 30 August 2022

Siemens Gamesa CEO Jochen Eickholt had the pleasure of welcoming not one, but two heads of state at our facilities recently: On Wednesday, August 24, he met with Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen at our blade plant in Aalborg, Denmark. The day after, he hosted German Chancellor Olaf Scholz at our nacelle plant in Cuxhaven, Germany. Both visits presented unique opportunities to discuss the challenges the wind industry faces – and how legislators can help clear the way to a greener future.
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The European wind industry is in the red. Like in other industries, production and profitability is affected by fierce price pressures and soaring energy, commodity and transport costs.

“Decisive action is urgently needed from governments, developers, manufacturers, and suppliers – without it, both the European green energy transition and the entire European wind industry are at risk,” highlighted our CEO Jochen Eickholt.

Still, the future of our industry seems more promising than ever. Governments in Europe have agreed to ambitious targets for clean energy in response to the climate crisis, and lately the importance of energy independence and security has been clearly demonstrated. REPowerEU, Europe’s new energy strategy, aims for 510 GW of wind energy by 2030, up from 190 GW today.

“While the ambitious targets set by European governments can only be applauded, we see a significant discrepancy between political ambition and current permits and installation. Today, we are far from being capable of building enough wind projects to reach these targets,” Jochen adds.

 

We believe in taking action

At Siemens Gamesa, it is our mission to lead the green energy revolution, and as wind industry pioneers, we have the knowledge and expertise to do so. “We believe in taking action, and we have actively reached out to the heads of state in Denmark and Germany and invited them to come visit us; to see our products with their own eyes and to hear what we need from them to continue leading the global green energy transition,” Jochen says.

Both countries are well positioned to lead the changes our industry is so urgently in need of – and both have presented very ambitious targets lately. Denmark, for instance, has demonstrated its leading position in the wind industry with plans for a North Sea Energy Island. 

I am very impressed by this great technological innovation associated with wind energy
Olaf Scholz

German Chancellor

In Germany, the federal government has published a target to reach an impressive renewable share of 80% by 2030 and ambitions to double storage capacities.

“I am very impressed by this great technological innovation associated with wind energy,” Chancellor Scholz said during the press conference. Pointing at one of our nacelles standing right beside him, he then added. “This is something very special that can help us live in a better world.” Looking at the ambitious targets for Germany, he said: “We will change all the legal regulations that today stand in the way of a rapid implementation of those targets.” As time is already getting scarce, Scholz underlined that his target is to get all these legislative changes in place by the end of this calendar year.

This speed is urgently needed, as the combination of high targets and an unhealthy European industry opens the door to players from other countries who are not acting on a level playing field. Making a greener future for Europe requires urgent measures to be adopted at both national and EU levels: Measures such as optimized regulatory framework conditions, simplified auction designs and permitting processes – all of which require immediate action from our politicians.

When welcoming the Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen to Aalborg, Jochen specifically noted, “We need you to simplify and accelerate the permitting processes, including making necessary grid investments and establishing clear and transparent grid access rules, at a national level, with clear deadlines on permit decisions and one-stop shops.” The Danish Prime Minister expressed how impressed she was with our blade technology and the incredible sizes we are manufacturing – and by the fact that we are the largest employer in the Danish wind industry. She also took time to sit down and talk to some of our factory colleagues. “It must be amazing to be working every day to win the climate battle,” she said. 
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