Projekt Firmengruppe
Wind. Know. How.

Keeping consumers in the dark!

Electricity prices: Consumers pay for gifts to industry.

Since the decision to decommission nuclear power stations, there have been more and more forecasts of electricity price increases, something that already tends to be reported frequently towards the end of each year. It"s important to examine closely who is claimed to be responsible for this.

Above all the large grid operators like to represent renewable energies as the main cause of price rises, although it has repeatedly been proven that they do not pass on lower energy prices to consumers (see e.g. www.sueddeutsche.de/geld/strompreis-energiekonzerne-zocken-kunden-ab-1.983198), instead using electricity price rises to increase their profit margins.

Exemption from the obligation to pay network charges is often used as a way of avoiding costs. For instance, in January the German Association of Energy and Water Industries (Bundesverband der Energie- und Wasserwirtschaft BDEW) repeated its "recommendation" for an exemption of electricity storage technologies from the obligation to pay network charges with a terse reference to the "low effect on households" e.g. in the case of pumped storage plants, as the sums involved only totalled the "very small share" of € 95 million per year.

The German Network Agency even states that there is a "trend towards introducing subsidies in the form of a complete or partial exemption from network charges" and warns that "all other network users must always pay for this through higher network charges".

Recently, the German government made a gift to electricity-intensive industries. Companies with a consumption of more than 10 million kilowatt-hours per year are exempted from network charges. According to "Monitor" news programme broadcast on 27 October, this amounts to a saving of € 1.4 billion!

Internet product comparison portal Verivox - rated "very good" by Stiftung Warentest consumer advice organisation - expects an average electricity price hike of four percent at the end of the year. After analysing the factors, Verivox criticises the "continued unclear situation regarding network charges and the individual price policies of the various utilities" - this is where the danger of deceit lies, not in the development of the levies according to the EEG (Renewable Energies Law).

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