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    Power generation

    Fossil energy sources dominate

    Not enough energy is generated in the FrankfurtRhineMain area to cover demand. More than half of the required electricity must be imported into the region. The rest is produced locally: in fossil power plants, waste incineration and from renewable energies. Overall, the share of fossil fuels such as coal, oil and natural gas in locally generated electricity is more than two thirds (80 percent). In heat generation, the figure is 74 percent.


    More than half of the electricity is imported / Share of fossil energy the largest

    To cover the entire regional energy demand in 2017, 60.1 percent of the electricity had to be imported. That is around 11 terawatt hours per year (TWh/a). The rest was largely covered by local fossil power plants (31.9 percent or ≈ 6 TWh/a). Renewable energies accounted for 4.6 percent (≈ 0.9 TWh/a) and waste incineration for 3.4 percent (0.6 TWh/a) of electricity consumption.


    Most of the municipalities in the Regional Authority import the majority of the electricity required

    Only a few member municipalities have sufficient local capacity to cover a large part of their electricity consumption. These include Frankfurt, Rüsselsheim, Offenbach and Großkrotzenburg with their fossil fuel power plants. Schöneck, Karben, Friedberg, Weilrod, Nidderau and Florstadt cover larger parts of their own electricity consumption with wind energy. Flörsheim am Main can cover its own electricity consumption with the biomass power plant and the Wicker landfill and biogas plant.


    Electricity generation from renewable energies - Biomass is the most important energy source

    In 2017, local electricity generation from renewable energies covered 865 gigawatt hours (GWh), or around 4.6 percent of the region's electricity consumption. At 38 percent (≈ 329 GWh/a), electricity generation from biomass accounted for the largest share, followed by photovoltaics with 30 percent (≈ 258 GWh/a) and hydropower with 14 percent (≈ 121 GWh/a). About 12 percent (≈ 102 GWh/a) was generated from wind power. At 6 percent (≈ 55 GWh/a), sewage and landfill gas had the lowest share of local electricity generation from renewable energies.


    Development of electricity generation from renewable energies (2001 to 2017)

    Electricity generation from renewable energies almost doubled between 2010 and 2017 from around 587 GWh per year by around 45 percent to around 865 GWh. Photovoltaic power generation increaseed particularly strong - by around 141 percent (from 107 GWh to 258 GWh). Electricity generation from wind had more than doubled in the same period (from 42 GWh to 102 GWh).


    Renewable electricity generation in the municipalities

    While all municipalities generate electricity using photovoltaics, wind turbines are concentrated in the east and north-east of the Regional Authority´s territory (as of 2017). Thus, in Schöneck, Weilrod, Karben, Friedberg, Nidderau and Florstadt, energy was generated by wind. The municipalities of Schöneck and Weilrod had a particularly high production of wind energy.

    In 2017, locations on the Main River such as in Maintal, Offenbach, Frankfurt and Hattersheim with their barrages were at an advantage in the generation of electricity from hydropower. Although the Ostheim barrage is still located in Hochheim, it feeds its electricity into Wiesbaden.

    The biomass power plants Wicker and Fechenheim as well as the bio- and landfill gas plant, which is also located in Wicker, contributed to the generation of electricity from biomass, biogas and landfill gas.



    Heat generation almost entirely from fossil fuels

    Heat consumption in the region amounted to around 35 TWh in 2017. Non-renewable technologies played the leading role in local heat generation (excluding heat from electricity) with 98 percent (≈ 33 TWh/a). Around 17 percent of the heat was produced by fossil fuels in combined heat and power plants or combustion plants (≈ 5.9 TWh/a) and 4 percent in waste incineration (≈ 1.4 TWh/a). Only 2 percent (≈ 0.7 TWh/a) of heat consumption in 2017 was produced by renewable energies.

    The remaining 77 percent (≈ 26.6 TWh/a) were probably covered by fossil domestic fuel. Data on energy production from fossil fuels are difficult to access and could only be collected in individual cases. Heat is usually produced on site, as the losses are very high if there is a long distance between production and consumption, and only little heat reaches the consumers. It can therefore be assumed that the amount of heat produced by fossil fuel is the difference between heat demand and collected heat production.



    Heat generation from renewable energies - biomass plays the main role

    Only about 2 percent of the region's heat in 2017 was generated by renewable energies. This corresponds to 728 GWh/a. The majority of this, 66 percent (≈ 483 GWh/a), was generated by biomass and biogas. This also includes wood and residual materials for private households, such as pellets. Biomass and biogas were thus the most important energy sources in the region for both electricity and heat production from renewable energies. Heat pumps and shallow geothermal energy (down to a depth of 150 metres) produced 21 percent (≈ 153 GWh/a) of local, renewable heat. Solar thermal energy accounted for 9 percent (≈ 62 GWh/a) and sewage and landfill gas for 3 percent (≈ 23 GWh/a).


    Heat generation from renewable energies (2001 to 2017)

    Like electricity generation from renewable energies, heat generation from renewable sources also increased from 2001 to 2017. Compared to 2010, local heat production from renewable energies increased by about 18 percent by 2017 (from 616 GWh/a to 728 GWh/a). Solar thermal energy increased the most at around 24 percent (from 50 GWh/a to 62 GWh/a), and biomass/biogas, at around 20 percent (from 404 GWh/a to 483 GWh/a). The share of heat pumps and shallow geothermal energy also increased by around 18 percent over the same period (from 129 GWh/a to 153 GWh/a).



    Data basis for electricity and heat generation

    The information on electricity and heat generation in the region has been compiled from the Municipal Energy Profile for the Regional Authority FrankfurtRheinMain (status 2017). You can find the profile as well as detailed data on the individual member municipalities and administrative districts under Municipal Energy Profiles and in the Climate-Energy-Atlas. When calculating the energy profiles, we are dependent on the availability of various third-party data, some of which are published with a delay of about 2 years.