German Renewable Surcharge to Rise by 47 Percent

October 16, 2012

Germany's surcharge for renewable energy will rise by almost half next year, intensifying the burden for consumers from the country's shift away from nuclear power, says Reuters.

  • The 47 percent increase reflects the fact that renewable sources are providing increasing amounts of electricity, which is bought from producers at guaranteed prices above market rates.
  • The so-called "Umlage" -- charges levied on German consumers to support renewable power -- will rise to 5.3 euro cents ($0.68) per kilowatt hour (kWh) in 2013 from 3.6 ($0.46) cents in 2012.
  • The four leading high voltage network operators (TSOs) are scheduled to officially release the increase on October 15, based on their forecast of renewable power production in 2013.

Under German law, green power from sources like wind and solar must be fed into the electricity grid and paid for at above-market rates in a system partly administered by the TSOs. The renewable surcharge covers the difference between guaranteed prices paid for renewable energy and market prices for conventional energy.

German media has been highlighting the cost to households of German Chancellor Angela Merkel's decision last year to speed up the switch to renewables and switch off nuclear plants earlier than planned.

Source: "German Renewable Surcharge to Rise by 47 Percent: Source," Reuters, October 10, 2012.

 

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