Queenslanders to get electricity price relief

Published Sunday, 12 October, 2014 at 10:00 AM


Treasurer and Minister for Trade
The Honourable Tim Nicholls

The Honourable Campbell Newman

Minister for Energy and Water Supply
The Honourable Mark McArdle

The average Queensland household will save $577 on their power bills over the next five years under a Queensland Government plan to permanently remove the cost of the Solar Bonus Scheme from electricity prices.

Premier Campbell Newman said the $3.4 billion Strong Choices Cost of Living Fund would be used to ensure Queenslanders no longer had to subsidise the cost of solar usage through their power bills.

“Our Government came to office determined to ease cost of living pressures for Queenslanders,” he said.

“From our family car registration freeze, to putting in place stamp duty concessions for those buying family homes, our water rebate, and cutting public transport fares, we have set about undoing Labor’s years of cost of living increases.

“Now, if given a mandate to act on our Strong Choices lease plan, we will have the funds available to take six per cent off retail electricity prices in 2015/16.

“Our Strong Choices Electricity Price Relief plan will save the typical household $577 over the next five years, while households which also have tariff 33 for hot water systems or pool filters may expect to save a further $165 during that time.”

Treasurer Tim Nicholls said the Solar Bonus Scheme had helped fuel Queensland’s electricity price rises.

“At present, the cost of the solar bonus scheme makes up 6 per cent of a typical household electricity bill, and that’s forecast to grow if nothing is done,” Mr Nicholls said.

“Our Strong Choices Electricity Price Relief plan provides direct savings to Queenslanders, while also being fiscally and economically responsible.

“Importantly, under our plan there will be no change for existing solar customers. Put simply, instead of their feed-in payments coming from the price of electricity, it will come from the Strong Choices Cost of Living Fund.

“Strong Choices Electricity Price Relief represents an historic structural shift to reset the starting price of Queensland’s electricity network costs.

“With network costs making up 55% of the typical household bill in 2015-16, this is the best policy solution that targets the right area instead of quick sugar hits from cash splashes or rebates.”

Minister for Energy and Water Supply Mark McArdle said if implemented, the change in electricity pricing would have economic and social benefits right across Queensland, taking the pressure off businesses as well as households.

“This will further enhance our existing plans for economic growth and a diverse four pillar economy,” Mr McArdle said.

“In the past we have seen Governments continually add to the price of electricity through the Somerville recommendations and its resulting capital expenditure, the mandatory renewable energy scheme, the Solar Bonus Scheme and the Carbon Tax, which was finally removed on 1 July 2014.”

Strong Choices Electricity Price Relief is the final component of the Strong Choices final plan, which is expected to yield $37 billion through the lease of some government-owned assets. Those funds will be allocated as follows:

  • $25 billion to reduce State debt from $80 billion to a manageable $55 billion, with annual interest payments reduced from $4 billion to $2.7 billion, a saving of $1.3 billion;


  • $8.6 billion to establish the Strong Choices Future Investment Program, which will create 11 separate funds, each of which is dedicated to supporting infrastructure considered vital to economic growth, jobs and vibrancy of regional communities; and


  • $3.4 billion to create the Cost of Living Fund, now to be used to finance Strong Choices Electricity Price Relief.

However none of these proposals will be implemented until the Government has received a mandate for the plan at the next State election.

To view the plan visit www.StrongChoices.qld.gov.au

Strong Choices Electricity Price Relief examples:



Estimated savings ($)

Tariff 11 Customer Type*

Annual consumption (kWh)

Total 5 year savings

Frugal single person


 $               300

Frugal couple


 $               430

Single parent one child or couple no children


 $               570

Couple with one child or single parent two children


 $               710

Two parent, two child family


 $               860

Two parents, two children, pool or two parents four children


 $            1,190

Two parents, four children, pool or two parents six children


 $            1,480




Estimated savings ($)

Small business tariffs

Annual consumption (kWh)

Total 5 year savings

Typical Tariff 20 small business


 $               650

Typical Tariff 22 small business


 $            1,400


[ENDS] 12 October 2014

Media contact: Anna Hilton 0408 191 192