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Decommissioning and Repowering


The continuous dismantling or replacement of existing wind turbines is inevitably linked to the aging of the existing plant portfolio. While in the past there was a promotion of repowering by the EEG, since August 2014 the dismantling of WTGs has only taken place because of the condition of the plant or because the location can be used more worthwhile with a modern WTG [Deutscher Bundestag].


In 2018, a total of 142 wind turbines with a total capacity of 188 MW were dismantled or shut down (see figure below). Despite the elimination of the repowering bonus, most (almost 90 percent) of the decommissioned wind turbines did not complete their 20th year of operation. On average, the dismantled turbines were around 17.7 years old and had an output of 1.33 MW. Against this background, the high share of 1 - 2 MW class wind turbines in the decommissioned wind turbines is not surprising.





Age structure of the wind turbines decommissioned in 2018

Datenquelle: [BNetzA]



A total of 149 of the wind turbines erected in 2018 with a total capacity of 482 MW were reported as replacements for dismantled wind turbines. Since the decommissioning of some of the replaced turbines may have already taken place in the previous year, a direct comparison of the figures for dismantling and repowering is only of limited informative value.