BERLIN, Aug. 4 (Xinhua) -- Total energy consumption in Germany decreased by 8.8 percent year-on-year in the first half of the year (H1), the Working Group on Energy Balances (AGEB) announced on Tuesday.
"The main reason for the decline in consumption is the macroeconomic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic," AGEB noted. With the exception of renewable energies, all other energy sources in Germany recorded consumption declines in H1.
Renewable energies increased their contribution to the total energy consumption in the country by three percent, according to AGEB. Wind power and solar energy both increased by 10 percent due to "favorable weather conditions."
Consumption of hard coal fell by almost 25 percent in the first six months, while consumption of lignite even declined by 35.5 percent, according to AGEB.
The main reasons for the "substantial decline" in lignite consumption were the sharp rise in electricity production from renewables as well as the effects of the pandemic on the German and European electricity market, AGEB noted.
However, the transfer of additional lignite-fired power plant units to safety standby was also an important reason, according to AGEB. The German government recently approved a detailed schedule for the phase-out of the country's coal-fired power generation by 2038.
For 2020, AGEB is expecting energy consumption in Germany to decline between 7 and 12 percent, depending on the "recovery from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic."