Queensland electricity prices set to rise

Queensland residents face electricity price increases of up to $122 with the introduction of the carbon tax, the state’s Competition Authority warns.

Without the federal carbon tax (due to take effect on July 1), the typical household electricity bill would have fallen by $70 in the 2012-13 financial year, the Queensland Competition Authority said.

In its draft determination of future regulated retail prices which was issued today, the authority said today it was prepared to allow a price increase of up to 7.6 per cent in 2012-13.

The main household electricity impost is labelled “Tariff 11”, while the off-peak rate is called “Tariff 33”.

The authority has calculated that householders who use 5370 kWh per year under Tariff 11 can expect their annual bill to increase by 3.9 per cent or $52.

For those utilising the same amount under Tariff 11 plus 1965 kWh per year on the off-peak tariff, the annual bill is set to rise by 7.6 per cent or $122.

The carbon tax will therefore push the typical household bill up by 11.2 per cent or $192 higher than it might have been without the federal levy, said the authority.

The authority, which sets the benchmark retail power price, also warned the federal government’s Renewable Energy Target scheme would only energy raise costs.

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“In addition, the Commonwealth Enhanced Renewable Energy Target Scheme, which has not been removed despite the introduction of the carbon tax, adds $92.80 [5.4 per cent] to a typical residential household’s annual bill,” the report reads.

While the vast majority of Queenslanders pay competitive prices to various electricity retailers, about 1.1 million residents remain on notified prices, with the majority of those living in distribution area or Ergon Energy.

During the Queensland state election, Liberal National Party leader Campbell Newman promised to ease the financial burden by freezing the standard domestic charge, Tariff 11, therefore providing savings of approximately $120 per year on power bills.

However, Mr Newman did not say when he would freeze the tariff.

Federal Opposition leader, Tony Abbott, has vowed to repeal the carbon tax if he takes office, while Prime Minister Julia Gillard has promised $8 billion in a household compensation package to ease the impact on the cost of living as a result of the carbon tax.

by Australian Solar Quotes

The Author

I took an interest in the Australian energy sector close to ten years ago and since then have monitored the trends, technologies and direction of the Australian Energy Market. I was drawn to the Australian solar market in 2008 and since then have worked heavily in the field. I am partnered with national and international solar energy companies, from manufacturers of solar panel and inverter technology, online software developers that introduce tools to quote, monitor and manage solar power systems and media organisations who like myself, closely monitor the solar and renewable energy sector.

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