Electricity bills rise on high demand

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High demand for electricity during the hot weather combined with an upward trend in petrol prices will ensure Cypriots pay more for summer energy bills.

In comments to media outlet Stockwatch, acting spokesperson for the Electricity Authority of Cyprus (EAC), Demetris Nathanael, said from 1 July bills will rise 1.24% compared to the previous month or by 6.26% from two months ago.

He said bills are 35% higher than last year, as the EAC had applied a 10% discount to bills due to the coronavirus restrictions from April to October 2020.

“A household with a consumption of 800 kWh today pays around €179 per two months, while last year they paid €132 for the same consumption”.

He argued the rise is mainly due to the rise in the cost of oil, “a cost which the EAC cannot absorb, and will have to roll down to the consumers”.

Nathanael said bills would also be inflated as demand during the extremely hot July and August broke every record in the book when temperatures reached a scorching 45 degrees Celsius.

According to data from the country’s Transmission System Operator (TSO), the previous record regarding demand was 1160 MV on 4 September last year, the hottest day of 2020, when the temperatures reached 46.2 C.

TSO data shows that demand reached 1178 MV a week ago, while it peaked at 1236 MV on 5 August.

July is usually the month with the highest electricity demand, followed by August and September.

The spokesperson said the EAC is rolling out plans to rid itself of dependency on fossil fuel.

“The EAC development plan includes the utilization of Renewable Energy Source projects, participation in the arrival of natural gas to minimise the impact of fossil fuel costs, such as petrol,” said Nathanael.