Medium-term forecast of electricity supplied to final consumers in Germany in the calendar years 2016 to 2020

In the study “Medium-term forecast of electricity supplied to final consumers in Germany in the calendar years 2016 to 2020“ the Fraunhofer ISI determined the final consumption for 2016 across which the cost of refinancing renewable energies will be split in Germany. The decline in final consumption can be traced back to a drop in net electricity demand to about 512 TWh, which is mainly due to efficiency improvements in electricity-based applications and processes. There has also been a slight increase in self-generation to about 52 TWh, for example from installing PV systems in private households, which has contributed to the decline in final consumption as well.  

The combination of these trends results in the final consumption for 2016 dropping to 460 TWh compared to 2015. The privileged share of final consumption – the part that only has to pay a reduced EEG surcharge – amounts to 104 TWh next year. This means a non-privileged final consumption share of around 356 TWh, for which the EEG surcharge has to be paid in full. The drop in the share of final consumption subject to the full surcharge combined with a further cost increase for expanding renewable energies results in the EEG surcharge rising to 6.354 cent per kilowatt hour in 2016.

Besides analyzing the final consumption subject to the EEG surcharge, the Fraunhofer ISI’s study also estimated the associated cash flows. The surcharge payments of final consumers (privileged and non-privileged) contribute 22.88 billion euros to financing renewable energies.

The EEG surcharge finances the difference between the revenues from selling EEG-financed power on the market and the payments made by transmission network operators for power generated from renewable sources. This surcharge is paid by the non-privileged and partially privileged end consumers of electricity. A special equalization scheme regulates which consumers only have to pay a limited EEG surcharge. The 2014 amendment of Germany’s Renewable Energy Sources Act (EEG) has resulted in a much more complicated special equalization scheme, primarily due to the introduction of various exceptions and hardship case regulations. The Fraunhofer ISI‘s final consumption forecast was differentiated by the various privilege categories in order to account properly for the different rates of EEG surcharge.