Germany Proposes Heftier Green Energy Surcharge for Heavy Industry

June 26, 2014 By Kirsten Korosec

EU Energy ManageGermany has proposed changing a policy that would require industrial companies producing their own electricity to pay a higher surcharge in an effort to appease the European Commission and control renewable energy costs.

The proposal was presented to the European Commission, which objected to an initial draft of a renewable energy bill, to reach an agreement over green power subsidies and meet a deadline needed to secure rebates for Germany industry, reported Reuters. Germany had until Tuesday to align its green energy reforms with the EU’s competition laws, including a rule that requires heavy industry to pay a surcharge for power they produce at their own plants.

Industrial companies would pay 30 percent of the 6.24 euro cents per kilowatt surcharge, twice as much as the 15 percent that was previously planned. Small plants such as rooftop solar panels and existing plants would be exempt.

The Germany government says it will fight the European Union’s demands to exempt imported electricity from an energy surcharge, reported Reuters.

In April, the European Commission adopted new rules that will require less funding for renewable energy from industry. The new rules address the commission’s concern that industrial support for renewables has caused “serious market distortions and increasing costs to consumers.”

The rules provide criteria on how EU member states can assist energy intensive companies that are particularly exposed to international competition from charges levied for the support of renewables. The guidelines will be valid from July 1, 2014 until the end of 2020.

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