Everything you need to know about natural gas and electricity
Electricity traders usually offer an exchange price product with a trader’s mark-up when electricity is purchased at Nord Pool exchange prices in the Latvian area, changing hourly, and a fixed price for the entire term of the contract, including future price change risks.
When switching traders, it is possible to choose not only the best price offer, but also the most suitable product, service, payment and contract conditions.
To calculate the savings, the difference between the mark-ups should be compared in the case of an exchange-traded product and the difference between the two fixed prices should be compared in the case of a fixed price. The next step is to multiply this difference by your annual consumption. Often, in the case of the fixed price, there is also an early termination fee, so when calculating the advantage of switching traders, the early termination fee of the existing trader must also be taken into account.
You can switch your electricity trader by concluding a contract with the new trader by the 15th of each month, and the new trader will start supplying electricity from the 1st of the following month.
The trader can be changed by any company and household that has its own connection to the distribution system, as well as by tenants of the property, if the contract provides for such a possibility.
The price of electricity is determined by the payment for electricity, depending on which product is chosen, who the electricity trader is and when the contract was concluded. In addition, the customer pays the tariffs set by the Public Utilities Commission (PUC) for transmission, distribution system services, the mandatory procurement component (MPC) and VAT of 21%. Regulated tariffs will be the same for all traders.
An electricity contract is an agreement for the trade of electricity with a trader, which is signed electronically or in printed form. This contract specifies the price for electricity and the selected product, payment terms, early termination fee, if applicable, and stipulates whether the bill includes fees for transmission, distribution and mandatory procurement component, or whether the user himself pays the distribution system operator for these services.
It is necessary to request a price offer from the specific trader and conclude a contract. The rest of the process will be provided by the new electricity trader.
Electricity traders can be compared in terms of the prices of the products offered, the payment terms and the contract termination fees set, if any.
Electricity producers also need their own trader that performs balancing to transfer the remaining electricity to the grid or to purchase electricity at night when no solar energy is produced.
The smart meter helps you keep track of your electricity consumption so that you, evaluating your habits and knowing the next day’s exchange prices for each hour, can adjust your consumption, thus reducing costs. This simplifies recording and accuracy, as there is no longer a human factor (error, forgetting to give the reading, etc.), while the consumption at specific hours for a particular user is accurately recorded.
Green electricity is produced from renewable resources (for example, sun, wind, water), thus protecting nature. If green electricity is purchased, the trader shall issue the relevant green electricity certificate and proof of its origin.
The open natural gas market not only provides an opportunity to receive natural gas at a lower price, but also allows you to choose the most suitable trader, which offers the most appropriate type of product, service and contract conditions.
You can switch your natural gas trader until the 15th day of each month by concluding a contract with the trader of your choice. You will receive natural gas from the new trader on the 1st of the next month.
At present, you can freely choose your natural gas trader in Latvia. On 3 April 2017, the natural gas market in Latvia was fully opened to all users (all legal persons, including State and local government institutions, State and local government capital companies). The market was opened to households from 1 January 2019 and households are free to choose the trader of their choice.
It is necessary to request a price offer from the specific trader and conclude a contract. The rest of the process will be provided by the new natural gas trader.
The supply of natural gas, meters, distribution and transmission system operators will remain the same, the price of natural gas will change and a bill will be received from the new trader. The quality and safety of natural gas will be at the same level provided by the transmission system operator AS Conexus Baltic Grid and the distribution system operator AS Gaso.
The price of natural gas is influenced by the chosen product, the term of the contract, seasonality, that is demand, weather conditions and the general future prices of natural gas on exchanges (for example, Gaspool).
The fuel of the future – biomethane, a renewable energy source, can also be used instead of natural gas; it consists of purified biogas. In terms of quality, biomethane is equivalent to natural gas. Biogas is produced by the fermentation of waste, animal waste and wastewater
In Latvia there are two CNG stations (Jēkabpils and Rīga) and soon one more in Babīte. EU clearly supports and pushes member states for the deployment of alternative fuels infrastructure. Elenger also intends to be part of the CNG development in Latvia.
Passenger cars running on gas are usually bivalent – using two fuels. If the gas runs out, you can continue driving with petrol – until the next gas fuelling station.
There are no restrictions on the use of CNG cars. Compressed gas cars can be used the same way as petrol and diesel cars in garages, tunnels, on ferries, etc.
The car’s compressed gas tank capacity is usually 15-25 kg. Today’s middle-class bivalent passenger car consumes an average of 3.8-5 kg of natural gas for 100 km, so gas can be used to travel for about 400 km; there is also the additional petrol reserve.
Maintenance is comparable to petrol driven maintenance, as the additional gas supply system is practically maintenance-free.