The energy sector in NRW
North Rhine-Westphalia is Europe's most important energy region. The state is home to international power utilities, energy-intensive manufacturing companies, power plant producers, as well as a large number of developers, providers and users of energy technology and services. Some 120 institutes at more than 30 universities as well as about 20 non-university research organizations conduct energy-related teaching and research, with special emphasis on increasing energy efficiency and exploiting the potential of renewables. NRW is among the international front-runners with regard to the development, testing and commercialization of renewable energy sources such as solar and wind.
|… that NRW supplies nearly one third of Germany's total electric power requirements?||... that Bayer MaterialScience transforms waste carbon dioxide into high-quality plastics at its plant in North Rhine-Westphalia?… that Bottrop is spearheading energy-efficient urban renewal under the heading "InnovationCity Ruhr"?||… that NRW is in the process of creating 100 climate-friendly housing projects?|
- Around 26,000 employees are working on the development and utilization of renewable energy technologies in 3,600 companies, generating total sales of more than 6.6 billion euros.
- With more work places in the maintenance area and in the operation of renewable energies, the total number rises to more than 50,000.
Projects for a successful transition to clean energy
Energy efficiency is high up on the research agenda in North Rhine-Westphalia. For instance, the Helmholtz Institute for Ionics in Energy Storage in Münster is addressing a key issue: how to store electric power in large quantities over long periods within compact dimensions. The institute has decided to concentrate its efforts on electrolytes, the most important component of any battery. North Rhine-Westphalia is also conducting research into smart electric power utilization. For example, the utility company RWE is involved in various projects centering on smart grids, smart meters and integrated home automation.
Energy enterprises in NRW
Two of the world's largest utility companies are headquartered in North Rhine-Westphalia: E.ON in Düsseldorf und RWE in Essen. The state is also home to numerous enterprises in the renewable energy sector:
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