Labor’s carbon tax will add $170 to an average Queensland household’s electricity bill.
Energy Minister Mark McArdle said the Queensland Competition Authority’s (QCA) announcement that electricity prices will increase by 13.6 per cent in July showed the challenge facing Queensland to address Labor’s painful legacy of locked-in costs of electricity supply.
The QCA found the increase in standard electricity prices for 2014-15 would have been 5.1 per cent if Labor’s carbon tax was removed, while some tariffs would have actually decreased.
“QCA data shows that removing Labor’s carbon tax would save an average household around $170 in 2014-15,” Mr McArdle said.
“Getting rid of Labor’s carbon tax is the quickest and easiest way to reduce electricity bills in Queensland.”
Mr McArdle said the Government was doing everything it can to put downward pressure on electricity prices, while managing Labor’s $80 billion of debt.
“The QCA said two of the main factors pushing up prices are the Solar Bonus Scheme and network charges,” he said.
“We are cutting the cost of poles and wires, introducing more competition with customer protections and reforming solar bonus schemes.
“We have removed prescriptive reliability standards for electricity distributors which will save Queenslanders more than $2 billion.
“Our reforms to the Solar Bonus Scheme will save Queenslanders $110 million.”
Mr McArdle said the Newman Government was pursuing the biggest-ever reform of the electricity sector aimed at stabilising electricity prices, which had skyrocketed over the last decade – causing more cost-of-living hardship for Queensland families and businesses.
“The QCA’s report clearly shows that electricity price increases this year and next year are the pass-through of costs associated with the former Labor Governments’ reckless spending on electricity assets,” he said.
“Whether by political design – or incompetence – past and present Labor MPs booby-trapped Queensland’s path to more affordable electricity prices.”
More information on the Queensland Government’s changes to the electricity sector is available at www.dews.qld.gov.au or by phoning 13 QGOV (13 7468). To view the QCA electricity price comparator, visit www.qca.org.au/compare.