EnBW renews green vows despite dip

German utility EnBW repeated its commitment to boost its renewables activities despite a poor performance in the segment in the first quarter.

The company pledged to try to double its "operational wind farms" to 360MW this year and expand its secure project development pipeline to 1GW. In offshore wind, it wants to gradually commission its 288MW EnBW Baltic 2 wind park, the largest in the German segment of the Baltic Sea.

Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciations and amortization (ebitda) in the renewables segment fell 21.9% to €42.7m ($59m) in the first quarter from the year-earlier period, as run-of-river power plants generated less electricity due to low rainfall and low water levels.

By contrast, electricity generation from wind was above the level for the previous year because new wind farms were built.

The share of renewables in the group’s overall ebitda fell from an already low 6.2% last year to 5.7% in the first quarter of 2014.

Despite falling profits, EnBW decided last year to boost its renewable-energy business by 250% by 2020 at the expense of fossil-fuel generation.

Overall ebitda at the company fell 15.1% to €744.8m in the first quarter from a year earlier, while net profit plunged 29.7% to €292.5m amid steep declines in the company’s grids and fossil-fuel generation and trading business.