Energy Democracy: Germany's Energiewende to Renewables

Energy Democracy: Germany's Energiewende to Renewables

by Craig Morris, Arne Jungjohann

Paperback(Softcover reprint of the original 1st ed. 2016)

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This book outlines how Germans convinced their politicians to pass laws allowing citizens to make their own energy, even when it hurt utility companies to do so. It traces the origins of the Energiewende movement in Germany from the Power Rebels of Schönau to German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s shutdown of eight nuclear power plants following the 2011 Fukushima nuclear accident. The authors explore how, by taking ownership of energy efficiency at a local level, community groups are key actors in the bottom-up fight against climate change. Individually, citizens might install solar panels on their roofs, but citizen groups can do much more: community wind farms, local heat supply, walkable cities and more. This book offers evidence that the transition to renewables is a one-time opportunity to strengthen communities and democratize the energy sector – in Germany and around the world.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9783319811451
Publisher: Springer International Publishing
Publication date: 06/14/2018
Edition description: Softcover reprint of the original 1st ed. 2016
Pages: 437
Product dimensions: 5.83(w) x 8.27(h) x (d)

About the Author

Craig Morris is Contributing Editor of Renewables International and lead author at He has served as editor of IRENA’s REmap report and Greenpeace’s Energy (R)evolution in addition to translating several major German books on renewables into English. In 2014, he won the IAEE prize for journalism in energy economics.

Arne Jungjohann is an author, consultant and political scientist. He served as a strategic advisor for the Minister President of Baden-Württemberg and in the Deutscher Bundestag. Based in Washington DC for several years, he fostered transatlantic dialogue on climate and energy matters. He lives with his family in Stuttgart.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Energiewende – the solution to more problems than climate change.- Chapter 2: The birth of a movement: 1970s protests for democracy in Wyhl.- Chapter 3: Fledgling wind power – the folly of innovation without deployment.- Chapter 4: German wind pioneers fighting power monopolies in the 1980s.- Chapter 5: The Power Rebels of Schönau.- Chapter 6: Renewable energy in conservative communities.- Chapter 7: The 1990s: laying the foundations for the Energiewende.- Chapter 8: Green capitalism made in Germany.- Chapter 9: The Red-Green revolution (1998-2005) .- Chapter 10: Healthy democracy: key to the Energiewende’s success.- Chapter 11: Utilities bet on gas and coal and renewables boom (2005-2011).- Chapter 12: From Meitner to Merkel: a history of German nuclear power.- Chapter 13: Merkel takes ownership of the Energiewende (2011-today).- Chapter 14: Will the Energiewende succeed?.- Chapter 15: Act now or be left out.

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

“One can make the case that the Energiewende is the most important new public policy initiative anywhere on the planet in the last fifty years - which is why it's so important to have an in-depth, readable, and in many places very moving analysis of the law. Must reading for those interested in community energy - which, on a rapidly heating planet, should be everyone.” (Bill McKibben, Author, Educator, Environmentalist and Founder of

“Readers who read English but not German, perhaps misled by the disinformation campaign portraying the Energiewende as a failure, will be astounded to learn what actually happened … .” (Amory Lovins, Rocky Mountain Institute Founder)

“Craig Morris and Arne Jungjohann's account of Germany's Energiewende is both sobering and inspiring. It shows that enough committed people — and a couple of key policies — can make clean energy a reality.” (Elisabeth Kolbert, author of Pulitzer Prize-winning The Sixth Extinction)

“"Energy Democracy" provides an important and inspiring story about how to achieve the post fossil fuel future ... .” (David Suzuki, author of Letters to My Grandchildren)

“Energy Democracy is the first book on the energy transition that documents who is behind the system change and what motivates them. It is a must read for everyone as it shows why the transition to renewable energy is so important – and a power shift in the double sense!” (Jakob von Uexkuell, founder of the Right Livelihood Award and the World Future Council)

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