The cost for inhabitants of rural areas to heat their houses with electricity has surpassed that of those who use oil for heating, ISK 8.4 (USD 0.07, EUR 0.05) per each kilowatt hour compared to ISK 7.7, according to an overview by the National Energy Authority.
While 89 percent of households in Iceland are heated with geothermal energy, nine percent rely on electricity and one percent on oil. Archive photo by Páll Stefánsson.
In urban areas people who heat their houses with electricity pay a lower fee than in rural areas, ISK 7.1 per kilowatt hour. For comparison, in the capital region where there is geothermal heating, each kilowatt hour costs approximately ISK 3.0 (USD 0.02, EUR 0.02), Fréttablaðið reports.
The state subsidizes both electricity and oil for heating purposes. The oil usage is subsidized by ISK 7.1 per kilowatt hour but electricity by ISK 2.9 in urban areas and ISK 3.4 in rural areas.
There haven’t been many changes to electricity usage in Iceland between 2010 and 2011.
The aluminum industry continues to use almost three quarters of the electricity produced in Iceland and other industry 11 percent. Approximately five percent of the electricity produced in Iceland is used in homes.
Almost 50 percent of the geothermal energy harnessed in Iceland is used for heating while 40 percent is used to produce electricity. Approximately four percent goes into heating swimming pools and a similar amount to melting snow.
Jónas Ketlison, geothermal specialist at the National Energy Authority, said in response to a question in 2010 that 89 percent of households in Iceland are heated with geothermal energy, nine percent with electricity generated from either hydropower or geothermal power (thus renewable) and only one percent from oil.