For a long time now, renewable energies have been the most important source of electricity in Germany. According to the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy, wind energy, solar power, hydropower, and biomass accounted for around 29 percent of the country’s gross electricity generation in 2016. Through their commitment to the development of renewable energies, DZ BANK and the cooperative banks are making a considerable contribution to the success of the energy transition in Germany.

It was over ten years ago that DZ BANK categorized the renewable energies megatrend as a major growth area. Our total lending volume in this sector is now around €4.7 billion. The continuous growth in the market for renewable energies is being fueled by the political decision to implement the shift in German energy policy and the resulting Renewable Energy Sources Act (EEG). Growing public interest in energy generation from renewable sources has also provided support. Wind power continues to have the most potential in Germany and it will remain the focus of our renewable energies lending in the future, despite the anticipated fall in installation rates as a result of the EEG amendment in 2017.

Wide range of products in the energy sector

With the cooperative banks working locally and the DZ BANK Group supporting them, the cooperative financial network brings together the substantial commercial potential of renewable energies. The spectrum of energy-related business initiatives at DZ BANK is extremely diverse, ranging from project finance for the construction and repowering of wind and solar facilities, to the financing of projects through energy cooperatives. The cooperative banks play an important role in this process, thanks to their network of local contacts.

Agriculture, Nature, and Energy (ANE) team

Agriculture and renewable energies are closely linked because the switch to renewable energy sources is largely taking place in rural areas. DZ BANK’s Agriculture, Nature, and Energy (ANE) team enables the local cooperative banks in all regions to call on specialist agricultural and energy experts for help with advising their local customers. A major strength of the ANE advisors is that they combine expertise in their respective fields with a deep understanding of regional circumstances. The ANE experts meet several times a year to discuss current issues and their experiences on the ground.

Regular agriculture and renewable energies forums

DZ BANK has established a permanent dialog on agriculture and renewable energies with the Volksbanken Raiffeisenbanken. Local events are held to keep the local cooperative banks' corporate customer relationship managers up to date on the latest developments. Many of them attended these events again in 2016, taking the opportunity to talk to DZ BANK's agriculture and renewable energies experts.