In the media: Consumers get first break on power prices since 2000
BDEW / afp
“The power price turn-around”
Electricity has become cheaper for private consumers for the first time since 2000, the German Association of Energy and Water Industries (BDEW) reports. Compared to 2014, household power prices have declined by 1.4 percent or 0.42 ct/kWh in 2015. An average 3-person household using 3,500 kilowatt-hours of power per year, pays 83.76 euros per month, down from 85 euros in 2014, the BDEW said. The main reasons for slightly falling consumer prices was the drop in electricity prices on the wholesale market and a decrease in the renewable power surcharge. But the high share in taxes and levies on consumer bills (52%) and an increase in grid fees meant that the changes in wholsale market prices only had little influence on consumer bills, afp wrote. The power price for small and medium sized companies as well as large industrial users also decreased in the first half of 2015.
See the BDEW’s press release and charts (in German) here.
See a CLEW article on the chance of falling power prices in Germany (from November 2014) here.
Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung (WAZ) / Reuters
“We will succeed with the Energiewende”
The government's scrapped plan to charge old lignite-fired power stations for emitting excess emissions, aimed at helping Germany meet its CO2 reduction goals, would not have endangered the plants or mining operations, energy and economy minister Sigmar Gabriel said in interview with the WAZ. But because of the feared job losses, he was standing by the compromise plan for a coal reserve, which would be more expensive for the general public, but perceived as less risky in the coal sector. “We will still reach the climate targets, after all we will close down 13 percent of all lignite power capacity,” Gabriel said. He added that having a coal reserve to back up renewables for a fixed transitionary period was – to his understanding – compatible with EU rules.
Read the interview in German here.
Read a Reuters pick-up on Gabriel’s remarks on the EU compatibility of his reserve in English here.
Federal Network Agency
“63 out of 92 suggested measures are necessary”
The Federal Network Agency has affirmed the grid development plan (NEP) 2024 and the offshore grid plan for power network expansion. Out of 92 grid projects suggested by the transmission network operators, the agency deemed 63 to be necessary within the coming years. The NEP 2024 includes 3,050 kilometres of grid connections to be refurbished and 2,750 km of newly built cables. After taking into account a slower development of offshore wind power and caps on onshore wind peaks, as demanded in the consultation process, the Federal Network Agency reduced the number of new grid kilometres it deemed necessary, a press release says. In its updated environment report on new power networks, the agency tested the use of buried cables alongside overland connections. The Federal Network Agency took some 34,000 stakeholder comments into account.
Read the press release in German here.
Download the grid development plans and environment report in German here.
Read a CLEW factsheet on the German grid here.