Enlarge image

Cargo bike in use, here: in Frankfurt am Main

Photo: Boris Roessler / dpa

No more federal subsidies for energy consulting, heat pumps and e-cargo bikes for the time being: The Federal Office of Economics and Export Control (Bafa) has temporarily put nine funding programs on hold due to the spending freeze in the federal budget. Until now, they had mainly been paid for by the Climate and Transformation Fund (KTF).

With immediate effect, no more applications for the programs would be approved or accepted, the federal authority announced on Monday in Eschborn near Frankfurt. On the other hand, projects with funding commitments that have already been made could be pursued.

The Federal Constitutional Court had declared the reallocation of 60 billion euros in corona aid in the 2021 federal budget null and void. The money should be used retrospectively for climate protection and the modernisation of the economy. Now the German government is looking for new ways of financing.

E-car subsidies not affected

Specifically, subsidies were stopped for heating networks, building energy consulting, heat pumps, serial renovations, climate-friendly refrigerants, e-cargo bikes and citizen energy companies for wind turbines, among other things. Not affected by the pause in applications are the programs for electric cars and the federal funding for efficient buildings.

Bafa currently lists the following programmes as "paused" on its website:

  • Federal funding for efficient heating networks (BEW)

  • Energy consulting for non-residential buildings, plants and systems (EBN)

  • Energy consulting for residential buildings (EBW)

  • Federal Funding for Energy and Resource Efficiency in the Economy (EEW)

  • Heat pump development programme (AWP)

  • Serial Refurbishment Funding Programme

  • Guideline for the Promotion of Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Systems with Non-Halogenated Refrigerants in Stationary and Vehicle Applications (Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Directive)

  • Guideline for the promotion of e-cargo bikes for bicycle-bound freight transport in business and municipalities

  • "Citizen Energy Companies" funding programme for onshore wind energy

However, the Office also points out that measures can be continued if a funding commitment has already been made. The funding pause therefore primarily relates to new funding applications that have not yet been decided.

The traffic light coalition is currently negotiating how the funding hole created by the Karlsruhe ruling could be closed. The government has also already signalled that the installation of heat pumps will nevertheless be extensively supported in 2024. According to a draft, all owners who replace their gas or oil heating system will receive a base subsidy of 30 percent. This applies, for example, to the installation of heat pumps, solar thermal systems, hydrogen heating systems and pellet heating systems. Geothermal heat pumps and heat pumps with natural refrigerant receive an additional efficiency bonus of five percent.

A further 30 percent subsidy is intended for low-income households that have a taxable annual income of up to 40,000 euros, which roughly corresponds to 50,000 euros gross.