Determination of cost-potential-curves for wind energy in the German federal state of Baden-Württemberg

R. McKenna*, S. Gantenbein, W. Fichtner

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)


The new federal government in the German federal state of Baden-Württemberg has set a target for 10% of gross electricity generation from wind energy by 2020. Given that currently around 0.1% of the electricity generation comes from wind energy, this paper examines the technical feasibility and economic costs associated with realising this goal. The technical potential for wind energy in Baden-Württemberg is determined, along with the costs of electricity generation, which together lead to the derivation of cost–potential-curves. The technical potential is calculated by identifying the available area with the aid of a geographical information system (GIS) and land use information. With the help of a regional wind atlas, turbine power curves and an assumed wind speed frequency distribution, the spatially distributed electricity generation potential on a district level is estimated. The costs of wind energy are investigated for the year 2010 and projected for the years 2020 and 2030 on the basis of learning curves. The result is a suitable area for wind energy of 2119 km², which amounts to 5.9% of the total area of Baden-Württemberg. Depending on the wind turbine selected, a capacity of 18.5 GW up to 24.5 GW could be installed and depending on the hub height and the turbine, an electricity yield of 29.3 TWh up to 40.7 TWh could be generated. The costs of electricity, depending on the type of turbine and the average wind speed, but lie for 2010 between 3.99 and 21.42 €-cents/kWh, reducing by 2030 to 3.33–17.84 €-cents/kWh.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)194-203
Number of pages10
JournalEnergy Policy
Early online date26 Feb 2013
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2013


  • Cost-potential-curves
  • Renewable goals
  • Wind energy


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