The average price of the ‘pool’ will be 379.03 euros/MWh, about 12.48 euros more expensive than on Saturday
The escalation in the prices of natural gas in the wake of the war in Ukraine does not give respite in the electricity tariff. The average price of electricity in the wholesale market will mark this Sunday, March 6, the second most expensive record in history, after the 383.67 euros/MWh that were paid on December 23, 2021. Specifically, it will stand at 379, €03/MWh. And the peak also comes on the weekend, when the average cost of electricity is supposed to fall due to the drop in industrial demand.
The figure is about 12.48 euros more than on Saturday, when it reached 366.55 euros/MWh, according to data published by the Iberian Energy Market Operator (OMIE). And the data is even more scandalous when compared to the records of just a year ago, when it was around 45.07 euros/MWh.
The prices of the ‘pool’ have a direct impact on households with a regulated rate (PVPC), to which almost 11 million consumers in the country are covered, and serve as a reference for the other 17 million who have contracted their supply in the free market .
By time slots, the maximum electricity price for this Sunday will be between 8:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m., with 470.01 euros/MWh, while the minimum, of 334.21 euros/MWh, will be registered between 03:00 and 04.00 hours.
With this scenario, it is very likely that the highs reached at the end of last year will be comfortably exceeded in the coming days. Especially taking into account the warlike tension that has triggered the prices of natural gas, whose futures contracts (which are traded on the Dutch platform TTF) reached almost 200 euros/MWh on Friday, from 52 euros/MWh that were around a year ago.
The escalation is unstoppable. According to data compiled by Facua-Consumidores en Acción, the electricity bill of an average user with the regulated rate reached 131.29 euros in February, 111.5% above the 62.08 euros of the same month from last year.
Against this background, the President of the Government, Pedro Sánchez, announced this week in the Congress of Deputies the decision to extend the extension, until June 30, of the current tax reductions on electricity, as well as the additional discounts from the social bond and aid for industrial consumers.
Although these measures bring relief, it seems that they will not be enough to offset the blow of the rise in gas prices. So the ball is now in the court of the European Commission, which has begun to open the door to a possible change in the pricing system as requested by Spain. In this system, the most expensive energy source is the one that determines the cost of electricity. At this point, Brussels is expected to decide in the coming days whether to finally decouple gas from the electricity market.