Germany's 37 million households will soon be paying half as much on their annual electricity bills as Australian households. An average German household pays just $1060, or about $88 a month, for electricity to run their computers, lights and other household appliances, while an Australian household in 2013 will be paying a whopping $2117, or $176 a month, according to the Australian Energy Market Commission (AEMC).
Australian retail electricity prices will rise 37 per cent from 2010-2014 (AEMC), widening the chasm between German and Australian bills and bringing hardship to Australian families already doing it tough from the high dollar and the financial crisis. And it’s going to get worse. As our electricity bills soar, Germany's electricity bills will rise minimally. According to the German energy agency (DENA), bills will rise just 20 per cent by 2020. For most families this will be offset by the legislated German-wide 20 per cent energy efficiency target, which will result in a further reduction of electricity consumption in German homes, reducing bills even more.
This may be contrary to what you've read in the popular press and understand about relative electricity costs between our two countries. Germans and Australians are basically paying the same amount for each retail unit of electricity at the meter, with Germans paying 0.31 Australian cents today which Australians will match next year (0.31 cents in 2013/14). The difference is the volume purchased, as highlighted above. Germany has a comprehensive climate and energy security policy suite that drives renewable growth and energy efficiency across the economy, which has led to average households that use half as much electricity as Australian households.
Germany's low electricity bills are saving families so that they can now spend on the important things in life, but that's not all that Germany's highly efficient electricity sector has achieved with its lower bills for consumers: