The energy transition in Germany should be a model for others. But nobody outside of Germany shows interest.
Hoffmann provocatively suggests that solar panels and windmills can be equated with the foolish undertakings of the citizens of Schilda, famed according to German folk stories for such silliness as building their city hall without windows and then attempting to carry the sunlight inside in buckets.
Germany Not Shielded from Coming Conflicts
Hoffmann further observes that even if the USA avoids international conflicts by increasing dependence on energy resources inside US borders, other nations -- led by India and China -- are predicted by the International Energy Agency to continue steeply increasing usage of oil, coal, and gas to stem the "legitimate energy hunger" of their growing populations quickly adopting developed nations' reliance on energy-intensive lifestyles. He worries that Germany's energy policy will fail to shield the country from the coming clash of nations seeking power over the waning energy resources of the earth.
A Better Energy AnswerThe true intention behind Hoffmann's insults to Germany's energy policies and its citizens' laudable achievements in breaking renewable energy barriers becomes clear in his concluding paragraph.
Hoffmann prompts Germans to consider a bigger picture:
It is time to give up direct control over energy production. We should instead pay for solar roofs in Spain and North Africa, for Danish wind energy, Bulgarian biomass, and even for more natural gas out of Russia. And trust that our neighbors will provide us with clean and affordable energy. That would be the global -- and correct -- answer.
We forgive Hoffmann for assuming no one notices Germany's renewable energy leadership, because we know what it feels like to watch the world march on as if everything is just fine in spite of calls to arms by those of us looking deeper into the details.
We hope Germans can look past his insulting comparison to the fools of Schilda, and pause for consideration of the conclusion that energy policy needs to extend beyond national borders to address the needs of the world without inciting conflict. And we hope that other nations notice if Germany leads in the direction of a global answer to the problem of global energy needs.