Germany’s municipal utilities expect a significant price increase for end customers: “In our estimation, gas and electricity tariffs will foreseeably double,” said the managing director of the Association of Municipal Enterprises (VKU), Ingbert Liebing, on Thursday of this week, according to the dpa New Osnabrück newspaper. He added that due to the fall in wholesale prices for gas and electricity, “of course the public utilities also wanted to lower the tariffs” and would do so “as soon as there was room for maneuver”.
Although the crisis is no longer quite as dramatic, it is not over yet. However, Liebing did not name the period for which his association expects the price to double.
Energy costs: moon price accusation
Last week, the energy expert at the consumer advice center in North Rhine-Westphalia, Udo Sieverding, said that the consumer advice centers at municipal utilities, regional suppliers and even discounters were observing that individual tariffs were asking for crazy prices. He even called on the Federal Cartel Office to take action against it due to the ban on the abuse of price brakes. Liebing now rejects this accusation: “The current spot market and futures prices are not yet so cheap that they are already having a sustained price-lowering effect. They would have to fall further and, above all, permanently.”
Liebing also advocates longer nuclear power plant runtimes, as does economics Veronika Grimm. Grimm explained that there would not be sufficient generation capacity available in the next two to four years, even with an increased expansion of renewable energies in order to calm the electricity market. Liebing said that “it is basically better” to “use the capacities that we have” to be prepared for emergencies.
Grimm predicts that extending the lifetime of nuclear power plants would reduce electricity prices by eight to twelve percent. She adds: “In addition, we would not have to generate so much coal”. Liebing appealed to the federal government: “The coalition can and must ignite the turbo.” You must accelerate the approvals for wind turbines significantly. Since December there have been completely new possibilities within the framework of the EU emergency regulation.
Massive price increases were already expected at the end of November last year. At that time, Thorsten Storck, the energy expert at the comparison portal Verivox, explained that basic suppliers would gradually have to pass on the higher market prices to their customers.
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