Over the last 10 years electricity costs have more than doubled, with prices increasing by 109 per cent. While Queenslanders have been copping this slug, executive salaries have increased by as much as 80 per cent.
Electricity prices are increasing at a faster rate than inflation and wages growth and putting a massive strain on household budgets. The cost of power has been listed as the number one issue facing the Queensland business community.
Under Annastacia Palaszczuk and Labor, prices have hit record highs. In 2017 alone, households have seen their bills jump by $50 and small businesses have copped an increase of $100. Wholesale power costs have increased 70 per cent and this is causing bill shock.
The Labor Government is treating electricity as a tax by stealth and using energy companies as ATMs. Labor has loaded these energy businesses with $5 billion in debt and is ripping 100 per cent of profits out of them. Annastacia Palaszczuk has refused to give ordinary Queenslanders a seat at the table and instead appointed union puppets and former Labor politicians to board positions.
The LNP’s energy policy has always been based on affordability and security, not ideology.
In government, the LNP took action to drive down network costs by stripping $7 billion in expenditure out of the electricity network businesses. The LNP successfully fought against Labor’s carbon tax, which nearly doubled wholesale electricity prices. We also took action to stop the spiraling cost of Labor’s costly green schemes, which continue to add more than $100 to your typical household bill.
From Opposition we have continued to fight against Labor’s extreme renewable energy policies which will cost $18 billion and force households and businesses to pay more. We also successfully fought alongside the Federal Coalition to remove electricity companies’ ability to legally appeal to increase your bill. The LNP will make sure Queensland’s energy security is not put at risk by focusing on affordability and reliability.
OUR REAL PLAN
A Tim Nicholls-led LNP Government will give Queensland consumers a fair go by putting consumer representatives on the boards of electricity network businesses.
The LNP has already pledged to freeze electricity executive bonuses until prices come down. That’s because we understand that executives shouldn’t be paid more while you see your disposable income go backwards.
The LNP’s energy policy focuses on affordability and reliability. The LNP’s plan to put downward pressure on electricity prices includes:
Build with the private sector a high efficiency, low emissions coal-fired power station in North Queensland. This means more jobs, more competition, more supply, better energy security and less uncertainty.
Freeze executive bonuses until electricity prices decrease. Labor has rewarded executives for record high electricity prices. That’s not fair for families or business.
Scrap Labor’s extreme 50% renewable energy target that will cost jobs, shrink the economy, increase prices, increase taxpayer funded subsidies and cause energy insecurity like blackouts.
Reporting Stanwell to the ACCC for price gouging and ripping off families and businesses. Annastacia Palaszczuk did nothing whilst Stanwell ripped off Queenslanders, the LNP acted to give Queenslanders a fair go.
This move to put consumer representatives on the boards of network businesses is about making sure the focus at these businesses is on outcomes for customers and not profits. This LNP policy is in distinct contrast to the Palaszczuk Labor Government who is relying on the profits from these businesses to prop up their failing budget, meaning you pay more.
The network businesses are monopoly service providers meaning they are allowed to pass back all their ‘efficient costs’ onto electricity customers. Customers don’t have a voice and skyrocketing network costs have contributed to a 41% increase in electricity bills over the last decade.
Whilst there is oversight from the Commonwealth Australian Energy Regulator to determine ‘efficient costs’ the rules have been relaxed. The ACCC Chairman Rod Simms has accused Queensland network businesses of exploiting these rule changes which has led to higher electricity prices for families, farmers and businesses.