German renewable energy surcharge to rise 47 pct next year

According to the four grid operator, the additional cost on electricity bill for renewable power would be increased from 3.6 cents per kilowatt hour this year to 5.3 cents in 2013.

The renewable energy market consists of the net consumption of electricity generated via geothermal, solar, wind and hydroelectric means, as well as through wood and waste combustion. Data are reported as net consumption as opposed to gross consumption.

Net consumption excludes the energy consumed by the generating units. The volume of the market is calculated as the volume of electricity consumed (in billions of kilowatt hours, kWh), and the market value has been calculated according to average annual electricity prices.

Any currency conversions used in the creation of this report have been calculated using constant 2011 annual average exchange rates.

The German renewable energy market had total revenue of $23.5 billion in 2011, representing a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 3.3% between 2007 and 2011.

Market consumption volumes increased with a CAGR of 6.9% between 2007-2011, to reach a total of 116.1 billion kWh in 2011.

Germany’s surcharge on renewable energy will rise by 47 percent in 2013, Germany’s four leading grid operator said on Monday, forcing its citizens to pay more for the country’s promotion of green energy.

Under the new surcharge scheme, a German household with annual consumption of 3,500 kilowatt hours will have to pay 60 euros more for its electricity bill, and the total surcharge next year will amount to about 20.36 billion euros, said the operators, attributing the surcharge increase to the boom in solar energy and increase of construction costs.

Berlin decided last year to replace the nuclear power with renewable energy following the Fukushima disaster in Japan. According to the German government, by 2050, 80 percent of Germany’s electricity will be produced by green power sources.

Under the German Renewable Energy Act (EEG), grid operators have to pay an above-market electricity price to solar, wind and other renewable energy producers to guarantee their profitable operation. Ultimately, the gap between the purchasing price and market price is covered by consumers in the form of surcharges.

“The EEG is not sustainable,” said Kurt J. Lauk, Economic Council president of Germany’s ruling party CDU, in an emailed statement last week.

“It’s out of control, German industrial electricity prices have already been among the highest in Europe, ” said Lauk, “Instead of permanent subsidies, we need a speedy economic integration of renewable energy, so that energy transition can be successful”.

German Environment Minister Peter Altmaier urged on Thursday last week an EEG reform, accusing the Act of focusing too much on quantity development and citing a lack of coordination.

He suggested to make the growth rate of renewable energy plants “constant and reliable,” and to set a limit for number of plants allowed to be built in certain areas. Altmaier also wished to offer consumers free consultation on energy efficiency.