Record number of German households have electricity disconnected following high prices

The German Energiwende is proving to be an embarrassing  fiasco, at an enormous cost – to producers as well as consumers – and with no returns. The only plus that can be discerned is to the ego of the “green” parties. Germany has the highest electricity prices in Europe directly as a result of the renewable energy surcharges. There is one small group of people which has benefited hugely. That has been the developers of renewable energy projects who have managed to build plants with very little of their own equity. They have then transferred ownership to plant operators and have shortened their own payback periods and maximised their returns.  Equipment manufacturers have seen their prices tumble, plant operators have seen their returns decline and consumers have seen their prices increase. But the developers have walked away with huge returns.

And it has all been for nothing.

The correlation between residential electricity price and installed renewable capacity is compelling. From Energy Matters.

The Y-axis shows residential electricity prices for the second half of 2014 from Eurostat. The X-axis installed wind + solar capacity for 2014 as reported in the 2015 BP statistical review normalised to W per capita using population data for 2014 as reported by the UN.

Now Der Spiegel reports:

Because of rising prices, more and more German citizens are unable to pay their electricity bills. In 2014, 351,802 residential households were disconnected, reports the Federal Network Agency (BNetzA) and the Federal Cartel Office in its new monitoring report. 

The number of disconnections  increased to the highest value ever recorded. In 2013, 344.798 cuts had been imposed and in 2012 there were approximately 320,000 disconnections. Yet far more households have problems with their electricity bill. According to the Federal Network Agency suppliers threatened their customers with disconnections a total of 6.3 million times.

The main reason for the increasing number of disconnections are the rapidly rising electricity prices. Since 2002, the costs for consumers almost doubled, partly because the levy for renewables rose, and because while the big power utilities reduced costs, these were not passed on to consumers.

The main victims are the households. Their electricity costs are around 45 percent higher than the EU average of 20.52 Euro cents per kilowatt hour. Adjusted for taxes industrial electricity price however is 6.27 cents per kilowatt hour, well below the EU average of 9.37 Euro cents per kilowatt hour.

For 2016, several utilities have already announced further increases. On average, this will be just over three per cent, which would mean an additional cost of approximately 40 euros per year for a four-person household.  .. Further increases are expected to be announced in the coming week. Customers must be notified of planned price changes for 2016 by November 20th. Experience has shown that many send these unpopular letters at the last minute.

The Energiwende has indeed been a revolution but it has not functioned as it was meant to. Costs have increased sharply and nothing has been achieved for the climate.

Because, of course, it couldn’t.

NoTricksZone comments:

It’s a glaring paradox of the Energiewende: On the production side, power plants are losing billions of euros because they can no longer even get a modest price for their power, while on the consumer side more and more households are unable to afford the skyrocketing prices brought on by the mandatory infusion of expensive and unstable green energies into the German power grid. The once mighty German power grid now teeters on the brink of crumbling.

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