Getting rid of the nuclear threat: Social driving forces in renewable energy regions in Germany

Tuesday, May 3, 2011 - 4:00pm - 5:00pm

Room 323 Barrows Hall at the Energy and Resource Group

Dr. Chantal Ruppert-Winkel, Centre for Renewable Energy, University of Freiburg; Head of the junior research group “Renewable Energy Regions” (

In cooperation with Jürgen Hauber, Michael Kress and Järmo Stablo

“Getting rid of the nuclear threat” - Social driving forces in renewable energy regions in Germany

The transformation of the present energy system to a sustainable energy system is discussed worldwide. Regions and communities in very different countries are addressing this challenge by setting up the political objective of achieving energy self-sufficiency through the use of renewable energies. Our research group Renewable Energy Regions (EE-Regionen) is analyzing social, technological, and ecological transformation processes in regions and communities in Germany that have committed to the goal of ‘renewable energy self-sufficiency’ (RESS). The presentation will focus on social aspects and will address:

  1. The political and institutional ‘environment’ for such initiatives in Germany;
  2. The transformation processes in the analyzed regions – focusing on local policies, the energy portfolio and the attitudes and involvement of citizens –;
  3. Research findings addressing the questions: what are the social driving forces behind the emergence of the political goal of RESS, and for the process to achieve this goal.

It will – finally - entail an outlook on the challenges the regions will have to face in future.