Expansion of renewable energies in the traction current portfolio
Building a mixed portfolio for a secure energy supply while increasing the share of renewable energies under an economically sustainable general framework is a core element of our green strategy:
- In addition to the contract for 260 GWh already concluded in 2020 with RWE, DB Netze Energy concluded an additional 15-year contract for the purchase of electricity from the offshore wind farm no. 47 Amrumbank West off Helgoland in 2021. From 2025, we will receive an addition of about 190 GWh per year. Every fourth wind turbine on Amrumbank will then be working for DB Group. Up to 153,000 t CO₂ per year will be saved compared with obtaining energy from a coal-fired power plant.
- A contract for supply from the Schluchsee hydroelectric power plant complex was also finalized with RWE. This is a pumped-storage power plant that can also supply renewable electricity from hydroelectric power no. 16 using the natural inflow of water. The ten-year contract includes an annual supply of 93 GWh.
- We are ensuring the continued operation of two wind farms in Lower Saxony that are more than 20 years old, which saves us about 50,000 t CO₂ p.a. by comparison with supplying electricity from coal power. The two wind farms provide about 90 GWh of electricity annually. By doing so, we are now also including onshore wind power plants in our green electricity portfolio. To date, there are few empirical figures regarding the reliability of wind turbines after 20 years of operation. The contract terms are therefore short in order to allow this information to be gathered initially.
- Another power purchase agreement has been concluded with ane.energy for the supply of wind power from the Hohen Pritz wind farm to DB Netze Energie’s balancing group. From 2022 on, DB Group will be supplied with 38 GWh p.a. over a period of two years.
- The first cross-border power purchase agreement has been concluded with Statkraft for power supplied by the Mågeli hydroelectric power plant in Norway. The electricity is supplied (188 GWh p.a.) via the ocean cable connection (Nordlink interconnector) between Norway and Germany, which was only commissioned in April 2021 and which connects the two electricity market areas of Germany and Norway to one another for the first time. The term of the contract is ten years.
- The solar power park no. 30 in Gaarz near Plau am See went into operation on May 31, 2021. We obtain approximately 80 GWh of eco-power annually from the 90 ha Enerparc power plant. The electricity is to be supplied for 30 years.
Energy supply for alternative drives
In addition to further line electrification measures, DB Netze Energy is also implementing solutions to supply rolling stock with alternative propulsion. The aim is to provide climate-neutral rail operation as an alternative to diesel operation in future, even on sections without overhead lines. To this end, DB Netze Energy is pursuing various technological approaches:
- With regard to the energy supply of battery-powered trains, planning services for the construction of appropriate recharging infrastructure in Schleswig-Holstein and Rhineland-Palatinate are being provided together with DB Netze Track. Since the beginning of 2021, planning has been underway for the construction of recharging infrastructure in North Rhine-Westphalia.
- In terms of supplying hydrogen no. 53, DB Netze Energy has been a project partner since November 2020 in a joint project sponsored by the BMVI between DB Group and Siemens Mobility for the approval and testing of the Mireo Plus H fuel cell drivetrain newly developed by Siemens Mobility for regional rail passenger transport. In this project, DB Netze Energy is responsible for the development of an innovative supply infrastructure for hydrogen. In addition, DB Netze Energy is constructing a hydrogen filling station in Frankfurt am Main as a pilot facility to supply our fuel cell road vehicles. This facility, which is designed not only to supply hydrogen but also to generate it on-site, is scheduled for completion in the fourth quarter of 2021.
- DB Netze Energy is also supporting the testing of alternative fuels within DB Group. This includes a field test of the advanced TrainLabno. 159, in which 100% HVO fuel (made from 100% hydrogenated vegetable oil from plant and waste residues) is supplied through a mobile tank container in Halle/Saale. The test of the supply and operation of the mobile tank container was extended by another year until at least mid-2022.