Category Deep dive


The energy transition requires major changes - a supporting pillar here is the far-reaching electrification of all sectors that previously used fossil fuels. In order for this to be implemented, a rapid and extensive conversion or expansion of the corresponding infrastructure (power grids, storage, charging stations for e-cars, etc.) is essential.

Especially in the energy sector, for example, an expansion of power grids and storage facilities will be essential to meet the future greater demand due to electrification. Electricity storages will also be needed, especially to compensate for the seasonal and diurnal variability of electricity generation from wind and photovoltaics.

Some industries will increasingly use green hydrogen, so both hydrogen import infrastructure and (local) hydrogen networks will need to be established and domestic hydrogen production will need to be expanded. At the same time, electrolysers also contribute to the success of the energy transition as electricity storage devices.

In the transportation sector, the expansion of e-mobility requires a strengthening of the charging infrastructure through more and faster charging options.

Finally, the increased use of renewably generated district heating creates a corresponding need for infrastructure in the building sector.

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far too slow
on track

Electric capacity of operating and planned hydrogen electrolizers

30% far too slow Compared to the scenario Technology Mix

Capacity (in terms of electricity used) of all operating and planned electrolyzers for the production of hydrogen.

The availability of renewably produced (climate-neutral, green) hydrogen is a crucial pillar of the energy transition to climate neutrality. Its use will become necessary where decarbonization cannot be achieved through electrification (e.g., as a feedstock and heat source for many industrial processes), and in the power industry during periods of low electricity generation from renewables.

Key points

  1. The use of hydrogen will become necessary in particular in industrial processes, in the energy industry in times of low generation from renewables, and as storage for excess renewable electricity.
  2. There is considerable uncertainty about the H₂ electrolysis capacities that can be realized in Germany by 2030.
  3. The German government's target of 10 GWel by 2030 requires a massive expansion of domestic electrolysis capacity.

Share of district heating in final energy for space heating and hot water

100% on track Compared to the scenario Technology Mix

This indicator describes the share of district heating in the final energy demand of the buildings sector for space heating and hot water. Environmental heat for heat pumps is not included in the final energy consumption.

The share of district heating in final energy demand for space heating and hot water is a measure of the expansion of district heating, which is an important component of the energy transition in Germany.

Key points

  1. District heating has to be greatly expanded in the future and provide a greater contribution to heat supply, especially in urban areas.
  2. For years, district heating has accounted for only just under 10% of the final energy demand for space heating and hot water. There is no sign of a significant increase yet.
  3. The expansion of district heating requires high and long-term investments. An equally long-term planning is central. Municipal heat planning is the crucial tool in the local context.

Project pipeline of steel production via hydrogen-based direct reduction

215% on track Compared to the scenario Technology Mix

This indicator shows the physical steel production via the hydrogen-based direct reduction process. The actual historical data include existing and planned production.

Steel is produced in Germany predominantly in two processes: Primarily in the coal-based blast furnace route and secondarily in the scrap-based EAF (electric arc furnace) route. Substitution of the GHG-emission-intensive blast furnace route is an important prerequisite for impacting the indicators "Oil, coal and gas consumption in industry" and "Energy and process-related GHG emissions of the industrial sector" in terms of target achievement.

Key points

  1. Low-CO₂ steel production is key for achieving the climate targets of the industry sector.
  2. For primary production, hydrogen-based direct reduction is likely to be the technology of choice.
  3. According to the Ariadne target path, about 25 Mt of low-CO₂ production are needed by 2030, and about 40 Mt by 2045. Of this, about one third to one half is likely to be primary production.