2012/13 Queensland Electricity Price Rises Announced

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Queensland households, businesses and farmers are braced for another round of electricity price hikes starting in July. 
  
The Queensland Competition Authority has released its complex Final Price Determination for 2012-13 regulated retail electricity prices for all regulated retail electricity tariffs in Queensland, except for the main residential tariff (Tariff 11).
  
Influencing the decisions were a number of factors including further increases in network charges and jump in the underlying cost of energy for small customers of around 43%.
 
Another important factor says the Authority are the effects of moving from what it calls an “ad hoc” set of tariffs to a new tariff structure more closely aligned with supply costs that will have increased the prices for some tariffs and decreased the prices for others.
  
While the main residential tariff will remain unchanged, a large jump in Tariffs 31 and 33 (off-peak controlled load tariffs) are due to the new prices “more accurately reflecting the costs of supply.”
  
The Courier Mail reports for households with off-peak tariffs for appliances such as electric hot water systems, air conditioners or running pool related equipment, the July increases could translate to an additional $69 a year, while small businesses in Queensland may pay $112 more on average.
  
With off-peak electric water heating about to become less attractive, solar hot water systems will likely receive a boost in uptake; as will rooftop solar panel systems to help offset increases. Queensland’s popular solar feed in tariff program pays solar households 44c per kilowatt hour for surplus electricity generated that is exported to the mains grid.
   
Particularly hard hit in the latest round of increases will be farmers. According to the ABC, tariffs available to non-residential power users have been rationalised and those that remain will rise by either ten or 20 per cent. The looming price hikes impacting agriculture may see a spike in interest in solar power for farms.
  
While many Queenslanders are feeling the pinch of continuing jumps in electricity prices, Origin Energy is reportedly stating the latest increases won’t be enough, saying the decision will impede the company’s ability to recoup approximately $60 million from the Queensland market for the cost of wholesale energy.