TSOs Publish Partly Lower Electricity Grid Surcharge for 2014

The German electricity TSOs have published the so-called Section 19 para. 2 StromNEV electricity grid surcharge for 2014. Following regulatory amendments in August 2013 that also affects the 2012 and 2013 surcharge it is lower than the 2013 surcharge for one consumer group.

Pursuant to Section 19 para. 2 Electricity Grid Charges Ordinance (StromNEV) large energy consumers can apply for individual grid charges according to Section 19 para. 2 sent. 1 or sent. 2 StromNEV. The transmission system operators (TSOs) are obliged to reimburse downstream grid operators for lost revenue and to settle these payments as well as their own lost revenue among themselves. Lost revenue can be passed on to end consumers.

In 2014 the Section 19 para. 2 StromNEV surcharge will amount to:

  • 0,187 ct/kWh for so-called “Group A” consumers, i.e. consumers with a consumption of up to 1,000,000 kWh at a delivery point.
  • 0,050 ct/kWh for so-called “Group B” consumers. Consumers with a higher consumption have to pay a grid surcharge of 0,05 ct/kWh for the consumption exceeding 1,000,000 kWh.
  • 0,025 ct/kWh for so-called “Group C” consumers, i.e. consumers from the manufacturing industry, from the rail transport or the railway infrastructure sector whose electricity costs exceeded 4% of their turnover in the preceding calendar year. They only have to pay  a surcharge of 0,025 ct/kWh for the consumption exceeding 1,000,000 kWh.

Concerning Group A consumers the Section 19 para. 2 surcharge for 2014 fell from 0,329 ct/kWh in 2013 to 0,187 ct/kWh in 2014. This is due to the latest amendment of Section 19 para. 2 StromNEV, which in particular no longer provides for a full exemption from grid fees for eligible energy-intensive companies in Section 19 para. 2 sent. 2, but reintroduced staggered reductions of the grid fees.

The possibility of the full exemptions of the grid charges for large electricity consumers had been introduced in 2011 in order to protect them from the effects of expected electricity price rises following the German energy policy shift towards a renewable energy supply. It lead to a continuously rising number of applications and was heavily criticized by consumer protection agencies and political parties like Alliance ’90/The Greens, as costs increased for the non-exempted consumers. In March 2013 the 3rd Cartel Senate of the Higher Regional Court of Düsseldorf (OLG Düsseldorf) declared the former Section 19 para. 2 sent. 2 StromNEV void and the European Commission opened an in-depth inquiry for potential state aid (please see blog posts below).

In principle, the subsequent amendment of Section 19 para. 2 StromNEV entered into force the day after promulgation. However, exemptions that have already been granted expire 31 December 2013. Otherwise the new exemption regime shall apply retroactively as of 1 January 2012. Further modifications of the grid fee exemptions will enter into force on 1 January 2014.

Due to the retroactive effect of the amendment and the fact that the surcharge now applies with a threshold of 1,000,000 kWh instead of 100,000 kWh the 2012 and 2013 surcharges had to be recalculated. A settlement will occur with the 2014 surcharge. For more information, please refer to the source below.

Regarding the offshore electricity surcharge for 2014 and EEG surcharge for 2014 that – among other additional charges – are also added to the electricity price, please see the first two blog posts below.

Source: EEG-KWK.net

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