EU Electric Power Reaches Lowest Prices in Ten Years

Come on, you don’t have to like electric cars to be glad about this news, even though it does mean extra benefits for EV adopters. But lower prices for something everyone consumes is a reason for a continent-wide celebration.
Wind farm in Holland 1 photo
Photo: Kim Hansen on Flickr
This situation was brought upon the European Union thanks to a couple of factors, both weighing in significantly. On the one hand, there are the all-time low prices for coal, but equally important is the proliferation of renewable energy sources such as wind or solar power.

Since Germany is the European Union’s largest market, it’s worth having a look at what’s happening over there. The average day-ahead electricity prices dropped in this region by 3.2 percent to the lowest level since 2004, one megawatt-hour costing just 31.70 Euros ($34.65) on the Epex Sport SE exchange in Paris.

Northwest Europe coal price marker continued its fall that started in 2011 and dropped by a further 33 percent. At the same time, Germany’s energy requirements met by renewable sources soared by 4 percent to a total of 30 percent out of the country’s total energy consumption.

This trend is set to continue throughout Europe in the new year as well, which means there has never been a better time to indulge yourself in buying that EV of PHEV. Looking at electricity prices in the nordic countries also explains why Norway accounts for so many of the EVs sold in Europe: the average price for a megawatt-hour there is only two-thirds of the price a German consumer has to pay.

The simple explanation is that the Scandinavian countries rely even less on coal power than Germany, using renewable sources instead. For example, the water reservoirs used to produce hydro power are fully dependant on precipitations, but on a good year, they alone can provide more than half the electricity needed in the region. As for this year, the hydro reservoirs are at an above-average 80.4 percent full, so the price is expected to remain low.

The Bloomberg report also notices that France is the only major European country to register an increase in energy price due to high demand caused by the cold and dry weather, which has also affected hydro production.
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About the author: Vlad Mitrache
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"Boy meets car, boy loves car, boy gets journalism degree and starts job writing and editing at a car magazine" - 5/5. (Vlad Mitrache if he was a movie)
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