Australian families will pay double for their electricity by 2030 as part of a net zero carbon emissions policy by 2050, a new report says.
The Institute of Public Affairs, a free-market think tank, said the closure of six coal-fired power plants in NSWVictoria and Queensland in less than a decade, consumers would pay an average of $3,248 per year — or $812 per quarter — in electricity.
The lack of affordable baseload power would cause wholesale power prices to quadruple within eight years.
This would lead to retail prices doubling by 2030 and increasing by 103 percent, while wholesale prices, which make up a third of the electricity bill, will rise by 310 percent.
Australian families will pay double for their electricity by 2030 as part of a net zero emissions policy by 2050, a new report says (pictured is a stock photo)
Electricity bills set to DOUBLE by 2030
AUSTRALIA: 103 percent up to $3,248
NSW: 100 percent up to $2,600
VICTORIA: 95 percent up to $2,500
QUEENLAND: 110 percent up to $2,500
SOUTH AUSTRALIA: 90 percent up to $3,200
TASMANIA: Up 125 percent to $4,500
Australians already pay an average of $1,600 a year or $400 every three months for their electricity.
But a 103 percent increase by 2030 would push the average electric bill to $3,248 per year or $812 per quarter.
The IPA feared that the decommissioning of the Yallourn W, Eraring, Bayswater, Liddell, Vales Point B and Callide B plants would remove 11 gigawatts — or 11 billion watts — of generating capacity from the national energy market.
These six stations make up 20 percent of the national energy market and are expected to close in 2028, 2025, 2030, 2023, 2029 and 2028, respectively.
Closing these stations would result in national wholesale electricity prices rising 310 percent to $241.80 per megawatt hour by 2030.
“In the absence of reliable and affordable base-load replacement power supplies over the next decade, consumers can expect their electric bills to more than double as a result of the shutdowns,” said IPA report authors Kevin You and Daniel Wild.
The Institute of Public Affairs feared that dismantling the Yallourn W, Eraring, Bayswater, Liddell, Vales Point B and Callide B plants would remove 11 gigawatts — or 11 billion watts — of generating capacity from the national energy market.
Prime Minister Anthony Albanese’s new Labor government promised the UN last week a 43 percent reduction in CO2 emissions by 2030.
The Liberal Party of its predecessor Scott Morrison had a less ambitious reduction of 26 to 28 percent within that time frame.
But both sides of politics were determined to have a net-zero target by 2050, which would put electric cars straining the electric grid as new petrol cars were phased out.
Electric cars had a minuscule market share of 1.57 percent last year, when Tesla sales data was included in estimates from the Electric Vehicle Council.
“Australia’s net-zero emissions policy by 2050 poses a significant risk to job growth, economic development and Australia’s energy reliability and affordability,” the IPA said.
Tasmania became the first state of Australia to achieve net zero CO2 emissions in 2015 thanks to extensive forests.
Despite this, the IPA projected that the island nation’s average electricity bill will rise 125 percent to $4,500 a year — the most expensive forecast for 2030.
Electricity bills were also expected to double in the other mainland states, with South Australia expected to have the next higher average annual bill at $3,200, followed by New South Wales at $2,600 and Queensland and Victoria at $2,500.
Coal plants are faltering this year and power companies are hesitant to upgrade them before closing.
This would lead to retail prices doubling by 2030 and increasing by 103 percent, while wholesale prices, which make up a third of the electricity bill, will rise by 310 percent. A 103 percent increase by 2030 would increase the average electric bill to $3,248 per year or $812 per quarter (pictured is stock photo)
As a result, wholesale electricity prices have more than doubled, rising 141 percent in the year to March, data from the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) shows.
The AEMO last week took the unprecedented step of suspending the national spot price of electricity, but that $300 per megawatt hour cap was set to be lifted Thursday morning.
Small electricity shops are now advising their customers to look for another provider from 1 July.
Joel Gibson, campaign manager for consumer group One Big Switch, noted that Discover Energy had advised customers a 285 percent increase, estimating bills would nearly quadruple at $1,563 a year.
“Hundreds of thousands of households with smaller retailers must now switch as soon as possible or they will pay a 50 to 285 percent increase in their electricity bills and pay unfair prices,” he said.
Electricity prices will also rise, with the Australian energy market operator noting that wholesale prices more than doubled to $87 in the March quarter – a 141 percent increase in a year.
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