A Burdensome Warm Winter
A Burdensome Warm Winter
  • Shin Hye-bin
  • 승인 2023.03.29 17:34
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  The Korea District Heating Corporation raised city gas costs four times last year, increasing by 5.47 won per megajoule on housing gas billa for the first time since the heat rate system was reorganized in 2015. In particular, housing heat rates increased 20.7% last month, the highest monthly increase since the reorganization of the heat rate system.
  The Yeungnam Observer interviewed Kim Ji-hee, who lives alone, about her burdensome heating bills. She said her gas bill came to 100,000 won last December. The amount has increased five times compared to 2021. As a student, her heating costs are very burdensome. In her studio apartment, the water pipes freeze if the heat is not turned on, so she said she turned on the heat throughout the winter. 
  The Korea District Heating Corporation said that heat rates are adjusted according to changes in city gas rates. Therefore, increases are due to rising international energy prices. Europe imported and used Russian natural gas. However, in 2022, the Ukraine war began, and Russia reduced its natural gas supply. European countries began to seek natural gas from other countries, thus driving up the price of natural gas. Recently, however, European countries have accumulated natural gas stocks in advance, and this winter was warm, reducing demand for natural gas. Therefore, the price of natural gas has fallen recently
  However, Korea’s gas costs continue to rise due to the deficit of the Korea Gas Corporation.When global gas prices soar due to the war, the market enconomy will be shocked if they are reflected in rising consumer prices. To prevent this, the government chose a structure that allows gas costs to be raised slightly and losses to be paid back later. According to Yonhap News Agency, Korea Gas Corporation’s cumulative loss amounted to about 9 trillion won as of the end of 2022. Therefore, gas import prices fell, but domestic gas charges were raised further to pay off the debt. The way to reduce heating costs is to lower the heating set temperature and use windproof curtains for doors and windows. Additionally, we could use warming items such as sleeping socks and underwear.


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