The current climate emergency:
The statements in publicly available sources, the message of which is reflected in the P2X Kopernikus report, are summarized as follows:
International and domestic policymakers are attempting to contain the consequences of human-induced climate change and have thus set targets to be reached by 2050. The German government reacted to the call for an energy turnaround by laying out a Climate Protection Plan in 2016 with a mission statement to attain greenhouse gas neutrality by 2050. In connection with the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, greenhouse gas emissions should be reduced by at least 40% by 2020. According to the current projection report on the future development of greenhouse gas emissions, this target will not be reached by 2020 with the measures taken so far. With regard to the current development of greenhouse gas emissions and the foreseeable target shortfall, the governing parties set out their intention in their coalition agreement in March 2018 to reach the 2020 target as soon as possible.
In the electricity, industry, transport and heat sectors, the electricity sector in particular recorded a considerable increase in regenerative energy produced by wind power and photovoltaics. However, the capping of green electricity stipulated in the German Renewable Energy Sources Act (Erneuerbare- Energien-Gesetz (EEG)) in 2017 is making it increasingly difficult for wind energy to feed in power in the onshore sector.
As a result, nearly 40,000 jobs were lost in this sector between 2017 and 2019. The last sad example of this was the insolvency of wind turbine manufacturer Senvion in September 2019.
As industry, transport and heat sectors are more likely to rely on material energy sources than on electricity, the wind energy sector is currently seeking a way out by directly generating hydrogen. This became particularly clear at the Wind Trade Fair in Husum in September 2019, amongst other things in the speech given by Daniel Günther, the state premier of Schleswig-Holstein, in statements made by Environment Minister Jan Philipp Albrecht, and in podium discussions.
Our proposal is to set up a German Center of Advanced Maritime Technology (DZMH).
Our experts suggest setting up an independent institute to accomplish this task. This institute would focus on treating exhaust gases from large diesel engines, generating green hydrogen and creating “green” synthetic fuel. The institute would also address the legislative requirements from policies, emission standards and maritime law. A major task would be to educate, instruct and train qualified personnel and staff at shipping companies and in the maritime industry.
The institute would also be a competent point of contact for German shipping companies, in particular for questions about the need and design of future tankers for hydrogen and carbon dioxide.
• The purpose of this maritime competence center is to make onshore technology available to the offshore sector.
• This competence center’s first focus should be on 3 pilot projects which deal with the production of synthetic fuels. The components of these pilot projects should be upgraded in such a way that they can be used by German shipping companies in the maritime sector. This technology would provide shipping companies with an edge over international competitors.