Cold winter ahead!



Why are gas and electricity prices increasing?


Photographs: iStock

Text: Narcis George Matache


In 2022, you will pay more for products, as it has become more expensive to produce them. In addition, rising energy prices are forcing businesses to increase the bill further to the customers. Sadly, rising energy prices mean higher utility bills for you.


Electricity

The average price is expected to be 90 øre/kWh in 2022, compared to 36 øre/kWh at the beginning of 2021. This means an average increase of 30% for a house with 4000 kWh/year (the math doesn’t add up because actual energy consumption represents only 25% of the electricity bill – the rest is transport, taxes and Moms). If you don’t have a fixed contract (fast pris), you will likely see some “wild” increases in your energy bill.


Heating

If you warm up your house with a natural gas boiler, you can expect to spend at least 4800 DKK more. If you have an electric heat pump, you can expect to spend 1780 DKK more. If you are connected to the district heating company, check their website to see the price predictions for 2022.


So, what’s going on?

The energy demand in the world is high (the world economy is booming), which has led to competition between Europe and Asia for energy resources. At the moment, China and India are willing to pay more than Europe. Also, the cost of pollution and emissions of CO2 in Europe has increased ten times since 2017.


What about our resources?

In the European Union, we are transitioning towards 100% renewable energy. At the same time, we are reducing the production of coal and natural gas while we close down nuclear plants. Unfortunately, we had a summer with less rain and wind than usual. This means less energy produced from wind turbines and hydropower plants (water reservoirs). This also means reliance on imported natural gas.


Unfortunately, the European gas suppliers failed to replenish stocks after the cold spring of 2021. Moreover, 40% of the imported gas comes from Russia. Now Russia is using this situation for geopolitical reasons (approval of Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline; intervention in the Ukraine border crisis; etc.) and is sending less gas than usual through the existing pipelines. Russia’s agenda is to turn the European population against the transition towards renewable energy by making us experience a cold winter.


The current situation can be called “a perfect storm” on the energy market, and it is the result of failed energy and storage policies that made us very dependent on gas imports. Our only way out is to accomplish what we already started – the transition towards 100% renewable energy.


Simple electricity-saving habits


Fill up your washing machine:

On average, most people only wash 3.2 kg of clothes at a time, even though our washing machines are designed for 5-6 kg or 7-8 kg.


Temperature counts:

Wash clothes at 20 instead of 40°C and 30 instead of 60°C. By minimising the heat setting, you save 55% on electricity consumption.


Use a drying rack:

Hang the clothes on a drying rack instead of using a tumble dryer. It costs almost 10 DKK every time you dry your clothes in a tumble dryer. If the weather is good, drying clothes outside smells the best!


Be mindful of turning off lights:

Turn off the lights in the rooms you are not using. Change to LED the next time you need to buy new bulbs. For example, replacing five halogen spots of 35 watts with LED saves almost 500 DKK per year on your electricity bill.


Temperature settings on appliances:

For every degree, you lower the temperature in your refrigerator, consumption increases by 5%. Likewise, for each degree the temperature falls below -18°C in your freezer, electricity consumption increases by approximately 2-3%.


Dishwasher smart:

Load the dishwasher fully and wash at a lower temperature. For example, if the dishes are washed at 50/55°C, they use 10-20% less power than those at 65°C. Save approx. 200 DKK per year if you fully load the dishwasher every time.

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