Irkutsk Region Implements New Energy Tariffs to Address Mining-Driven Power Shortage

  • Sergey Maga
  • 18 April, 2024 12:35
Irkutsk Region Implements New Energy Tariffs to Address Mining-Driven Power Shortage

Starting July 1, 2024, the Irkutsk Region will adopt differentiated electricity tariffs based on consumption levels, announced Governor Igor Kobzev. This move is aimed at maintaining low energy costs while regulating consumption to address the local power shortages caused by intensive mining activities. The new system sets a consumption norm of 25,000 kWh per month, which is designed to protect the interests of the majority of the region’s residents without compromising the area’s competitive energy rates, according to Interfax-russia.

This tariff restructuring follows a decision by the Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS) to annul previous orders by the regional Tariff Service due to violations in setting the 2024 energy tariffs. The FAS highlighted excessive cross-subsidization, which breached the permissible limit by over RUB 2 billion. This issue was significant as it exceeded the calculated cross-subsidization rules set by federal regulations, leading to a lack of budgeted compensations for the discrepancies.

Prior to this adjustment, the entire population of the Irkutsk Region enjoyed one of the lowest tariff rates in Russia, with city residents paying 1.42 rubles and rural residents 0.994 rubles per kilowatt-hour. However, from July 1, the rates will increase to 1.58 rubles for urban areas and 1.106 rubles for rural areas, reflecting a necessary adjustment to mitigate the energy deficiency caused by both gray and industrial mining operations.

This restructuring is critical as the Irkutsk Region has become an attractive hub for cryptocurrency miners due to its previously low electricity costs. The new differentiated tariffs are part of a broader strategy to ensure sustainable energy consumption while supporting the region’s economic stability and environmental commitments. 

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