With the recent release of the Federal Government whitepaper on power there has been a great deal of debate about the findings released. The white paper, released by Energy Minister Martin Ferguson, calls for States to privatise their assets, deregulate retail prices and charge people more for power during peak periods.
In Queensland, about 6000 people had their power disconnected in the June quarter because they couldn’t pay their electricity bill. Electricity prices have increased substantially within the last 3 years throughout Australia. It’s an issue both State and Federal Government’s are trying to tackle.
There is significant opposition to the measures of the white paper, Qld Energy Minister Mark McArdle citing that the Federal government’s clean energy initiatives are costing taxpayers of Queensland $400 per household a year, attributed to the carbon tax and solar feed in and renewable energy targets.
Mark AcArdle also made the comparison of Queensland against Victoria; where in VIC despite privatisation, the average family power bill for 7,000 kilowatts a year is $550 more per year than in QLD. The Queensland Competition Authority (ACA) has released research that suggests that rooftop solar costs are projected to add over $240, or 12 per cent, to the average electricity bills within five years.
The Renewable Energy Target means that up to one-quarter of Australia’s electricity will come from renewables by 2020. The White Paper also suggests a figure of a 40% target of electricity from renewable energy by 2035.