The electricity tower outside the Garden of Gethsemane 370.
(photo credit: MELANIE LIDMAN)
In preparation for an expected influx of privately produced power onto the
electricity grid in 2013, the Public Utilities Authority is laying out a series
of steps to increase transparency for consumers – and show them the price of
In the coming months, the two-and-a-half million
electricity customers in Israel will start seeing an itemized line on their
electric bills, showing what portion of their electricity came from green
energy, and at what price.
Since the cost of green energy is so much
higher than conventional energy, that price may be uncomfortably
According to the PUA, customers can expect clean energy costs to
add 4.4 percent to electricity prices in the coming year. This increase would
grow to 11.8% by the end of the decade.
In the coming years, the PUA
expects some 3,000 megawatts to come from private sources, which will be
independent of the monopolistic Israel Electric Corporation. The PUA also noted
that recent cuts it made to production quotas saved NIS 6 billion over 20 years,
equaling about a 1.5% drop in prices.
Eitan Parnass, the director of the
Renewable Energy Association of Israel, welcomed the announcement, but disputed
“The authority’s calculations are wrong, because you cannot
know the cost of electricity production in Israel in the coming years,” he said,
adding that the calculations were based on assumptions.
highlighted the environmental and health benefits Israel’s population would
accrue from cleanly produced energy.
The PUA has also been rolling out a
system to allow individuals to produce their own green energy, and even earn
money by “selling” electricity back into the system. In December, it approved a
“net meter” system to tally out the price differences for such homes.
consumers are really worried about rising prices, they have all the more
incentive to set up their own renewable energy mechanisms, and lop off those
extra shekels from their bills.
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