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Steigende EEG-Umlage: unerwünschte Verteilungseffekte können vermindert werden


Author Info

  • Karsten Neuhoff
  • Stefan Bach
  • Jochen Diekmann
  • Martin Beznoska
  • Tarik El-Laboudy


2013 will see a significant increase in the surcharge stipulated by the Renewable Energy Sources Act (EEG) and paid by power consumers to promote the use of renewable energies. This will equate to a rise in the share of private households' consumer spending on electricity from around 2.3 percent on average in 2011 or almost 2.4 percent in 2012 to almost 2.5 percent in 2013. The EEG surcharge accounts for 0.5 percentage points of this, or 0.6 percentage points including VAT. However, these proportions are significantly higher for low-income than for high-income households. DIW Berlin calculated the regressive distribution effects of rising electricity prices in general and the increasing EEG surcharge in particular on the basis of the Federal Statistical Office's sample survey of income and expenditure (EVS) and the German Socio-Economic Panel Study (SOEP) and extrapolated the results for 2013. The calculation indicates that households with the lowest income are especially adversely affected by the current price increases. To compensate for the social hardship of rising electricity prices for low-income households, the existing benefit systems could be adapted to anticipate price increases. At the same time, low-income households could be supported with tailored advice and financial assistance to enhance the efficiency of their electricity use and to ensure a lasting reduction of electricity expenditure. Another option would be to reduce the electricity tax for a basic volume of power consumption. Even if all three options were pursued in parallel, costs for public budgets are in line with revenue from VAT on the EEG surcharge, which is expected to increase to around 1.4 billion euros in 2013. Die EEG-Umlage, die Stromverbraucher für die Förderung von Strom aus erneuerbaren Energien zahlen müssen, wird im Jahr 2013 stark steigen. Dadurch erhöht sich der Anteil der Ausgaben für Strom an den Konsumausgaben privater Haushalte von durchschnittlich rund 2,3 Prozent im Jahr 2011 und knapp 2,4 Prozent im Jahr 2012 auf knapp 2,5 Prozent im Jahr 2013. Davon entfallen 0,5 Prozentpunkte - einschließlich anteiliger Umsatzsteuer 0,6 Prozentpunkte - auf die EEG-Umlage. Allerdings sind diese Anteile für einkommensschwache Haushalte deutlich höher als für einkommensstarke Haushalte. Das DIW Berlin hat die regressiven Verteilungswirkungen von Strompreissteigerungen im Allgemeinen sowie der steigenden EEG-Umlage im Speziellen auf der Grundlage der Einkommens- und Verbrauchsstichprobe (EVS) des Statistischen Bundesamtes sowie des Sozio-oekonomischen Panels (SOEP) berechnet und für 2013 fortgeschrieben. Es zeigt sich, dass vor allem die Haushalte mit den niedrigsten Einkommen spürbar durch die aktuellen Preissteigerungen belastet werden. Wenn man soziale Härten steigender Strompreise für einkommensschwache Haushalte kompensieren will, sollten die bestehenden Transfersysteme, zum Beispiel zur Grundsicherung, angepasst werden. Zugleich sollte durch Beratung und Finanzhilfen gezielt die effizientere Verwendung von Strom in einkommensschwachen Haushalten gefördert werden, wodurch Stromausgaben dauerhaft gesenkt werden können. Außerdem könnte ein allgemeiner Grundfreibetrag bei der Stromsteuer eingeführt werden. Selbst wenn alle drei Maßnahmen zusammen umgesetzt würden, läge die Belastung der öffentlichen Haushalte in der gleichen Größenordnung wie das Aufkommen aus der anteiligen Umsatzsteuer auf die EEG-Umlage, das 2013 auf rund 1,4 Milliarden Euro steigt.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research in its journal DIW Wochenbericht.

Volume (Year): 79 (2012)
Issue (Month): 41 ()
Pages: 3-12

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Handle: RePEc:diw:diwwob:79-41-1

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Keywords: Distributional effects power prices; historic development of prices; . - compensation mechanisms; efficiency;

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Cited by:
  1. Peter Heindl, 2014. "Measuring Fuel Poverty: General Considerations and Application to German Household Data," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 632, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
  2. Dr. Ulrike Lehr & Dr. Thomas Drosdowski, 2013. "Soziale Verteilungswirkungen der EEG-Umlage," GWS Discussion Paper Series 13-3, GWS - Institute of Economic Structures Research.
  3. Jonas Frank & Jana Lippelt & Johannes Pfeiffer, 2012. "Kurz zum Klima: Die Energiewende und das energiepolitische Zieldreieck – Teil 2: Wirtschaftlichkeit und Bezahlbarkeit der Energieversorgung," Ifo Schnelldienst, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 65(23), pages 81-85, December.


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