Rebates save German industry eight billion euros in power costs in 2017
Preferential treatment of energy-intensive industries in Germany cost households and non-privileged companies up to eight billion euros in 2017, Stefan Schultz writes on Spiegel Online. The industry rebates on power costs granted to companies like ThyssenKrupp, ExxonMobil or Deutsche Bahn, which have a high energy use and compete on the world market, means these companies make a smaller contribution to renewable energy expansion and grid modernisation that has to be compensated for by other power customers through a higher surcharge on their power bills, Schultz writes. Green politician Oliver Krischer has called the German rebate system a “subsidy jungle” and says that the country’s planned coal exit must not lead to even more rebates for the industry. “That would be a slap in the face of power customers,” Krischer said.
Relieving companies from financial burdens to the fossil fuel’s phase-out is part of the proposal tabled by Germany’s coal exit commission. According to the commission’s report, “accompanying measures for limiting power prices” are necessary to keep energy-intensive industries competitive.