solar plant and wind turbine

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The transmission system operators announced today the level of the EEG surcharge for 2020: the EEG surcharge has risen from 6.405 cents/kWh to 6.756 cents/kWh. Before that, the surcharge fell twice in succession. The EEG surcharge helps to fund the expansion of renewable energy in the electricity market. It has proved possible to stabilise the EEG surcharge in recent years. Since 2014, it has stayed within a window between 6.2 and 6.9 ct/kWh. At the same time, electricity generation from renewable energy sources has risen by 50%.

Federal Minister Altmaier said: “An Economic Affairs Minister cannot be pleased by a rise in the EEG surcharge. However, despite this increase, the fact is that we have now seen a stable development during a six-year period. The reforms implemented by us over the last few years are making the expansion of renewable energy much cheaper. But we are also having to cope with a burden of costs from the early years. Following falls in the EEG surcharge in the last two years, it is now rising slightly again. This confirms my core objective: electricity prices must remain affordable. For this reason, our recent decisions on climate policy included a gradual cut in the EEG surcharge from 2021. This reduces electricity prices both for private citizens and for small and medium-sized enterprises.”

The transmission system operators are expecting to see continued expansion of renewable energy in 2020, by close to 6 GW of capacity. This will mean an increase in electricity generation from renewable energy of 9 billion kilowatt-hours, or 4%. The new generation of installations needs less and less funding. Back in 2014, for example, a large photovoltaic installation received funding of 9.5 cents/kWh. That figure has almost halved today, with the latest funding levels standing at 5.5 cents/kWh. This shows that the reforms to bring about a more cost-effective expansion of renewable energy have been successful.

Almost half of the EEG surcharge is financed by businesses, and just over one-third is funded by residential customers. Most of the rest is paid by public institutions.