In a short time, France has slipped from first to third place in the ranking of European countries offering the most affordable electricity prices. This development is notably due to the gradual elimination of the tariff shield, combined with recent increases in the cost of electricity, which have had an unfavorable impact on France’s position in this ranking.
The French collapse in energy prices
Agnès Pannier-Runacher, the Minister of Energy Transition, took stock of the situation, affirming that the tariff shield would indeed be removed. However, she also wanted to reassure the French, indicating that electricity prices would not increase by more than 10% by February 1 of 2024, for the entire year. An announcement which contrasts with the recent declarations of Emmanuelle Wargon, president of the Energy Regulation Commission (CRE), who mentioned an increase of up to 10 to 20%. However, it is important to note that despite this encouraging news, France no longer occupies the first place in Europe in terms of electricity prices.
France had long benefited from advantageously priced electricity, largely thanks to its nuclear fleet and the presence of the tariff shield. However, the recent increases in the regulated rate (15% in February, 10% in August) have changed the situation, making French electricity a less economical option than in other European countries.
It seems that the country must adapt to this new reality. Without the tariff shield, the cost per kilowatt hour would become higher than that of Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium. The release of this system is planned for the end of next year, and a further increase from February 2024 is therefore possible.
If the gradual end of the tariff shield on electricity prices portends many disappointments for most French consumers, it is nevertheless not impossible to take advantage of the temporary lull to turn to alternative solutions, in order to make energy savings. Indeed, a few tips can help reduce the amount of your bills :
Optimize your insulation: Improving the insulation of your home can help reduce the need for heating or cooling, which saves energy;
Use energy-efficient appliances: Replace old appliances with more energy-efficient models;
Check your heating: Program your heating so that it only runs when necessary, and invest in a programmable thermostat;
Monitor your consumption: Use smart meters to monitor your energy consumption and adjust your behavior accordingly.
Insulate your windows: Good window insulation significantly reduces heat loss;
Turn off your devices in standby mode: Unplug electronic devices when not in use, to avoid standby power consumption, etc.
Finally, if these tips are not enough, there is an effective way toavoid price increases for a more or less long period: electricity offers at fixed prices. They guarantee an equivalent price of electricity during entire duration of the contract. Thus, the price paid today will be the same in one, two or three years, depending on the duration chosen.
*Table updated as of 09/19/2023. Budget calculated for a consumption of 12,500 kWh per year in Lyon in base option (6 kVA).
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