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    Media Statements

    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Minister for Energy and Water Supply
    The Honourable Mark McArdle

    Real cost of Labor’s hidden green schemes hit Queensland families

    Minister for Energy and Water Supply
    The Honourable Mark McArdle

    Wednesday, September 05, 2012

    Real cost of Labor’s hidden green schemes hit Queensland families

    The Queensland Competition Authority’s (QCA) preliminary analysis of the impact of Federal Labor’s “green schemes” on electricity prices has revealed electricity bills in Queensland would be at least 18 per cent cheaper without them.

    Energy Minister Mark McArdle asked the QCA to assess the true impact of Labor’s Renewable Energy Target (RET) and associated “green schemes”, which will require 20 per cent of Queensland’s electricity to come from renewable sources that include solar or wind by 2020.

    “Most of these renewable energy sources are three to 10 times more expensive than traditional ones and those costs are being directly added to electricity bills,” he said.

    “Labor’s Carbon Tax will add about $194 per year to an average electricity bill, but what they won’t admit is that their RET and associated schemes also come at enormous cost to Queenslanders.”

    Mr McArdle said the QCA established that the current RET level of 5 per cent added around $102 per year to the average bill. On that basis, increasing it to 20 per cent would equal $408 per year.

    “On top of this, an average cost of $54 per year from the Solar Feed-In-Tariff is also being added,” he said.

    Mr McArdle said QCA’s analysis showed “green schemes” were not only costing the average Queensland family around $350 per year, but the extra cost of electricity paid by business was passed through, adding to the overall cost of living.

    “While some compensation is being paid to offset the Carbon Tax, it is still being added to household electricity bills and nothing is being paid to soften the impact of these additional “green” charges.”

    Mr McArdle said the analysis also did not take into account the cost of building infrastructure to support programs such as solar PVs on homes.

    “In some areas, significant investments in infrastructure have been required to support solar PVs and all of these costs are added to the overall cost of electricity,” he said.

    “I have also asked the QCA to obtain the cost of building infrastructure to support green schemes. The QCA is expected to report back in the next few weeks.

    “This will allow me to accurately report back to Queenslanders on the cost of these projects and better understand the impact on consumers who are vulnerable to electricity price hikes.

    “These hidden costs should be fully transparent and explained by the Federal Government. I believe the Productivity Commission should take a close look at these schemes so we are all clear about real costs before we all are stuck with the bill.”

    [ENDS] 5 September 2012

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