No one today can doubt that the Danish heat users have reached deep into their wallets to keep up with rising energy prices. A new calculation shows that heat users in five Zealand municipalities now pay a total of DKK 3.7 billion extra per year to keep warm compared to the prices in 2020.
The starting point is BBR data and the prices for gas and electricity from December 2020 compared to September this year, as well as the current forward prices for the coming heating season. Holbæk, Køge, Næstved, Rudersdal, and Slagelse are the five municipalities that, due to their high number of homes with either gas boilers or electric heating, are particularly hard hit.
Chief consultant in Dansk Fjernvarme, Nicolai Kipp, believes that the new figures simply emphasize the need to speed up the ongoing spread of district heating to many more Danes. It concerns hundreds of thousands of Danish homes that must switch from natural gas to green district heating.
- The Danish district heating companies are in the process of a historic phasing out of natural gas from Danish homes, and we must continue converting and also want to speed it up, even more, says Nicolai Kipp.
The most significant additional expenditure for heating occurred in Holbæk Municipality, one of Denmark's most gas-heated municipalities. Here, consumers must now find approx. 950 million kroner extra to be able to pay their annual heating bills.
In the other municipalities, the total expenditure is smaller but also significant. In Køge Municipality, the total extra bill is approx. DKK 750 million; in Næstved Municipality, the additional bill is approx. DKK 700 million.
The heat users in Rudersdal Municipality have to find around DKK 650 million, while the citizens – and heat users – in Slagelse Municipality are forced to pay approx. DKK 600 million more per year to be able to keep warm.
In this context, Nicolai Kipp from Danish District Heating praises that the politicians have just added more funds to the District Heating pool. This enables district heating companies to apply for extra funds to implement their district heating projects in gas-dependent areas.
- These are important means for the district heating companies because they can make it cheaper for individual households to opt out of gas in favor of district heating. And that is why Denmark must switch from having fossil heating to green district heating, says Nicolai Kipp.
The extra costs for heat are primarily due to sharp increases in natural gas - i.a., as a result of the Russian invasion and war in Ukraine - and electricity. The high gas prices directly affect heating customers who get their heat from gas boilers or from district heating companies that primarily use gas. The increases in electricity, for example, affect citizens who have individual heat pumps or direct electric heating.