It seemed that the price of electricity would finally drop, but in truth, German consumers currently pay as much as ever. Rate payers are even more exposed than motorists.
For a year, Germans could hope for decreasing, or at least stable electricity prices. But now they know their expectations will not met. Quite the opposite: A recent analysis of price comparisons by TopTarif reveals that consumers are currently paying as much for their electricity than ever before.
Consumers who buy their electricity at the standard tariff from local utilities pay a current average rate of 30.27 cents per kilowatt hour (kWh). A year ago the price was less than 30 cents. A four-member family with a consumption of 4000 kWh per year is charged, on average, 1211 euros per year for electricity, according to TopTarif data. A year ago, the price was less than 1200 Euro and five years ago the price was about 1000 Euro.
Record pricing from April is quite remarkable. Usually rate increases by major utilities are incorporated into January prices, but this year Vattenfall and E.on have each raised their rates recently.
In Germany. one in three consumers purchase their power through the universal service tariff offered by the local utility. Forty-three percent of Germans have changed from their basic supplier to another tariff, while one in four has been looking for a new supplier in the free market. But even those consumers shopping for a different supplier are seeing record electricity prices. The model family with 4000 kWh purchasing from the best providers now pays 769 euros per year pay, 17 euros more than last year.
Energy transition will be paid in several ways
Price increases are related to state-administered electricity costs in the first place. This year, in addition to the costly renewable energy levy (EEG apportionment) additional fees are applied for co-generation, cost shifts away from industrial customers, and the burden of bringing on new offshore facilities.
Very few consumers know that they are paying many times over for the cost of the energy transition.
Consumers are also digging deeper into their pockets to cover the cost of delivering the energy to their homes as transmission lines and power lines are upgraded to manage fluctuating amounts of intermittent energy from wind and solar facilities.
According to calculations at the consumer portal Verivox, energy costs now make up only 27 percent of the electricity price. If consumers were responsible for paying only the electricity portion of their bill, the cost per kilowatt-hour would be just six cents. The procurement of energy for utilities in recent years has even dropped significantly. In 2009, the value for the energy was more than eight cents per kilowatt hour.
But the measurable decrease in production costs actually was not enough to stop the increasingly expensive state requirements for consumers. Experts attribute this also to an error in the system responsible. Since the producers of solar or wind power get a fixed feed-in tariff, falling electricity prices in the energy market mean more subsidies are needed to help wind and solar remain economical. This, in turn is transferred to a higher EEG cost.
Translated using Google Translate.