The average price of the wholesale electricity market will drop just 1% this Saturday, to 150.78 euros per megawatt hour (MWh), compared to the historical record of 152.32 euros / MWh this Friday, when it exceeded for the first time the barrier of 150 euros / MWh.
The price of electricity pulverizes another record and shoots up this Friday to 152 euros / MWh
Despite the slight drop, it is the second highest price in history and a record for this day of the week. At the weekend, the wholesale market price tends to fall due to lower demand from the industry.
Compared to the rest of the EU countries, the prices of Spain and Portugal (which have their integrated electricity markets) are by far the highest on the continent, well above the high prices registered for this Saturday in the wholesale markets of Italy (more than 139 eros) or Germany and France (139 euros).
The price of the so-called pool for this Saturday more than triples the 40 euros / MWh on the second Saturday in September 2020. Considering the time slots, the cheapest will take place between 5 and 6 hours, when it will drop to 120.48 euros . On the contrary, the most expensive will take place between 10 pm and 11 pm, when it will shoot to a record of 165 euros. The new toll structure that penalizes consumption in the most expensive hours of weekdays will somewhat blur the effect, as it is off-peak throughout the weekend.
The pool, whose price has doubled compared to May, continues unabated, driven by record gas prices in Europe and the historical highs of CO2, to which in Spain has been added the unscheduled shutdown, in the morning Thursday, from the Cofrentes nuclear power plant (Valencia), owned by Iberdrola, which still does not pour energy into the grid.
The escalation and social alarm over these increases have led the Government to prepare a package of measures to mitigate their impact through a shock plan that is expected to be approved by the Council of Ministers next Tuesday. The objective is to fulfill the promise of the president, Pedro Sánchez, that by the end of 2021 consumer prices will be similar to those of 2018, after discounting inflation.
The Government prepares the extension of the tax cuts already in force (VAT and generation tax of 7%) until next spring. It is also proposed to approve a reduction of the Electricity tax, which levies the receipt with 5.11% and is assigned to the autonomous communities.
On the table there is also a reform of the semi-regulated rate of the voluntary price to small consumers (PVPC) to which there are some 11 million domestic consumers, to make it less dependent on the pool, to which the cost of energy is directly indexed.
This would prevent the daily price from ending up on the front pages of all the media every time there is a record. According to Vice President Teresa Ribera, this measure has been requested by consumer associations. The two most important, Facua and the OCU, deny it.
The government is also preparing auctions that force large power companies to give up part of their energy, greater control of hydroelectric dams and a vital minimum supply for the most vulnerable households.
It is assumed that the current energy price storm will subside by spring, linked to the upward spiral of gas, derived from the low levels of storage of this raw material in Europe in the face of winter, strong Asian demand and uncertainty about supply from Russia, among other reasons. Added to this is the rising cost of CO2. This week it has exceeded 62 euros per ton for the first time.
This Friday, the Second Vice President and Minister of Labor and Social Economy, Yolanda Díaz, pointed out that “the electricity bill has become the great problem of Spanish society” and “is making it difficult for the recovery to be fair.”
In statements to TVE collected by Europa Press, the minister has indicated that the price of electricity is “the big problem” for the self-employed and SMEs and that it is also a “huge problem” for large electro-intensive companies, which consume “a lot Energy”.