German power prices continue to rise as first gas supplier terminates supply
dpa / Zeit / Wirtschaftswoche
German households are seeing rising electricity prices due to a number of factors. Increasing procurement costs for energy suppliers, the rising price of CO2 certificates, which has more than doubled over the past two years, and high wholesale gas prices have all combined to push power prices ever higher, according to a dpa report carried by Die Zeit. A first small gas provider, Deutsche Energiepool in Lower Saxony, decided to terminate customer contracts due to the rising costs and ceased its nationwide supply of natural gas, WirtschaftsWoche reported. The price for household electricity has already reached a record high, with a kilowatt-hour currently at an average of 30.54 cents – up from 28.65 cents a year ago. "These effects cannot currently be compensated for by the falling costs of renewable energies," stressed Kerstin Andreae, head of the German Association of Energy and Water Industries (BDEW). The BDEW is calling for a reduction in taxes and surcharges on electricity in an effort to relieve consumers. “For every 100 euros in electricity bills, more than 50 euros are state-caused," Andreae added. Between 2010 and 2020, the burden on electricity customers from taxes, levies and surcharges increased by around 70 percent. Currently at 6.5 cents per kilowatt hour, the renewable energy surcharge is expected to drop to six cents in 2022.
Philipp Litz of the Agora Energiewende think tank said the rapid expansion of renewables was the best way to counter rising electricity prices. A new federal government would have to triple the expansion rates for wind power and photovoltaics in the first 100 days. "This is central to achieving the climate targets and helps to lower the price of electricity."