Japan: 18% increase in electricity prices but Eco Cute helps soften the impact

By Sabine Lobnig, Jun 01, 2012, 15:11 1 minute reading

After a strong price increase in electricity rates for large scale power consumers, Tokyo power company TEPCO announces also higher rates for households and SMEs. While electricity gets more expensive for everyone, those using energy saving and storage technologies such as Eco Cute CO2 heat pump water heaters can at least benefit from cheaper night rates. Contracts effectively punishing power consumption during peak-times are also in the making.

Energy prices are rising in Japan as the air-conditioning intensive summer period is approaching. Large power consumers were already hit by a 17% electricity price increase since April 2012. Information published by the Tokyo power company TEPCO lets now to believe that small and medium sized companies (SMEs) as well as households might also be confronted with a 18% increase in electricity rates.

The high electricity costs make power saving measures key. To level out the strain on the grid over the day, electricity rates are particularly high during peak times (10am-17pm) and cheaper during the night (11pm-7am), although night electricity prices have increased as well (up almost by 25%).

This favours technologies that allow to stock energy during the night to be consumed during the day, such as Eco Cute. Effectively, households and companies that do not use energy saving / energy storage appliances like Eco Cute will have to accept contracts with very high rates during peak times, which power companies hope will help diminish power consumption at crunch times.

For low power consumers, TEPCO has recently started to differentiate between “electric light” consumption (mostly households) and “low voltage” consumption (mostly SMEs), translating into different types of contracts and charges.

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By Sabine Lobnig

Jun 01, 2012, 15:11




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