economy electricity price reform
Federal Network Agency for lower electricity fees for wind power regions
As of: 5:53 p.m. | Reading time: 3 minutes
“As soon as the law is passed, we will make a proposal for the reform,” says Bundesnetzagentur boss Klaus Müller
Source: Patrick Pleul/dpa/archive
The northern federal states have long been pushing for a reform of electricity charges. Now Federal Network Agency President Klaus Müller jumps aside: “It is obvious that we should reward the expansion of renewables.”
The Federal Network Agency has spoken out in favor of an electricity price reform with lower fees for regions with a lot of wind power. The President of the authority, Klaus Müller, said the “Neuen Osnabrücker Zeitung“There is a draft law in the Bundestag that would authorize the network agency to introduce fair network charges. “As soon as the law is passed, we will make a proposal for the reform.” So far, regions that rely particularly on wind power have been particularly heavily burdened financially.
The northern German federal states, in which higher electricity prices are charged due to the costs of expanding the grid, have long been pushing for a fairer distribution of the burden. Because it is primarily countries in the South that are closing themselves off to the demand for a levy based on solidarity, the governments in the North brought the establishment of different electricity price zones into play. Although they see themselves as being in line with EU law, they have met with protests from the heads of government in southern countries.
“We in the north produce green energy with large wind farms and send it to the south. The electricity prices are lower there than here. This injustice must be remedied,” said Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania’s Prime Minister Manuela Schwesig in June after the announcement by Federal Economics Minister Robert Habeck that she wanted to eliminate the north-south divide in network charges. Schleswig-Holstein’s Economics Minister Claus Ruhe Madsen made a similar statement.
“I don’t meet any energy minister in the federal states who still approves of this historically grown system”
Netzagentur boss Müller now said: “I don’t meet any energy ministers in the federal states who still approve of this historically grown system.” Finally, regions in southern Germany are also affected, where many wind turbines are set up and connected to the grid. His impression is that the energy ministers of all federal states are behind his reform plans. “Because it is obvious that we should reward the expansion of renewables. I can well understand the frustration of many citizens and regions about this.”
A spokeswoman for the Federal Ministry of Economics said with regard to renewable energies that the goal must be to make the expansion-related network costs between the regions fair. European requirements must be observed for this. “At the same time, we rely on a close dialogue with and between the federal states.” According to a ruling by the European Court of Justice, the network fees must be determined by an independent regulatory authority. In Germany, this is the network agency. In May, the cabinet initiated a corresponding amendment to the Energy Industry Act.
According to the network agency, the grid fees, which account for about one fifth of the electricity price, were 9 to 12 cents per kilowatt hour for households in Schleswig-Holstein and Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania in 2022 and 5 to 7 cents in Bavaria. According to the latest information, up to 14 cents are now due in the Northeast. The comparatively high taxes in the north are considered to be one reason why the resistance to new wind farms in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania remains high.
The district council in Schwerin had therefore proposed eliminating the grid fees for the citizens of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania in order to give wind power momentum. The same must apply to Schleswig-Holstein or Brandenburg, which also already generate a lot of electricity from renewable sources.
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