Low earners to pay highest rate for electricity

Electricity bills are rising and solar power is counteracting the expense but what about those who cannot afford solar panels.

A group speaking on behalf of the most vulnerable is pleading that the Australian government reviews the assistance program as the electricity bills continue to rise.

Queenslander’s can expect their annual electricity bill to go up by 7.6%.  This means that for the average Queensland household, they will see an increase of $122 per annum.

On July 1, average households will also adopt a new escalating tariff structure.  The structure will include a rate increase as their usage increases.

Queensland Council of Social Service (QCOSS) chief Mark Henley says the proposed new “inclining block tariffs” will increase the average customer’s overall bill by about 3.9 per cent.

But for very low users this fixed cost constitutes a major portion of their bill.

“In a worst-case scenario the overall bill for some pensioners could almost double,” he said.

“These people, often those already taking drastic measures to reduce their usage, could see their bills almost double regardless of their efforts to conserve energy and keep their costs down.”

Even for those receiving a concession, an average increase of 13.9 per cent would be a serious issue.

QCOSS has urged the QCA to look at transitional measures to smooth the move to new tariffs, and has asked the government to undertake an urgent customer impact analysis.

Submissions on the proposed pricing and tariff changes closed on Friday.

by Australian Solar Quotes

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