04 Feb 2022, 12:25
Julian Wettengel

Govt party politican wants to ensure savings from end to renewables levy passed on to consumers

Der Spiegel / Tagesspiegel Background / Clean Energy Wire

Consumers must fully benefit from any potential early end to Germany’s renewables levy, the top-up to power prices households pay to finance renewable energy sources, Timon Gremmels, energy policy coordinator of the governing Social Democrats (SPD), told Tagesspiegel Background. “This must be ensured – after all, it is budgetary funds that make the abolition possible.” Energy law expert Thorsten Müller called on lawmakers to require power suppliers to reduce prices for private end consumers by exactly 3.723 cents per kilowatt hour. That is the current amount of the levy. However, Der Spiegel cited economy ministry sources as saying that suppliers are not obliged to pass on the savings to customers. This could not be legally regulated otherwise because it was a matter of private law contracts between customers and electricity suppliers. “We have trust in strong competition on the electricity market,” said the sources.

High energy prices remain a major headache for Germany’s new government, and the coalition parties are debating ways to ease the burden on struggling consumers. A possible short-term remedy could be an earlier end to the country’s renewable energy surcharge, which households pay with their electricity bill. Germany’s government already agreed to abolish the renewables levy by 2023 and is now considering to end it by 1 July 2022, reported Der Spiegel. Earlier this week, finance minister Christian Lindner came out in support of an earlier abolition.

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