AGL’s $1 Million A Day Profit

South Australians struggling with major electricity bill increases have questioned the profits a major power and gas company is making and the salaries it is paying its executives.
   
An article on AdelaideNow states AGL, which supplies natural gas and electricity to the majority of South Australia’s 666,000 households, reported an underlying profit of $431.1 million nationally in 2010-11 – over $1 million a day.
    
AdelaideNow also says the company’s CEO, Michael Fraser was paid a package worth $3.4 million. 
   
Aside from being AGL’s CEO, Mr. Fraser was also recently appointed Chairman of the Clean Energy Council (CEC). Mr Fraser’s appointment generated controversy among some of the CEC’s membership; which primarily consists of small solar power system installation businesses.
  
With electricity bills rising a reported $500 in the last three years, more South Australian households are implementing energy efficiency measures and installing solar power systems; which are still heavily subsidised by government solar rebates – for now. 
  
The number of South Australians who have been unable to rein in their power bill is reflected in the massive increase in residential electricity disconnections, jumping from 4748 to 7311 last year.
 
AdelaideNow says much of the electricity price rise in recent years has been attributed to factors such as the upcoming carbon price, increase in peak demand, maintenance and upgrades of ageing infrastructure and jumps in charges from electricity network businesses and utilities. 
 
As mentioned last week, of the increase in electricity costs for end consumers, less than 14% is due to green energy initiatives; which include support for solar programs.
 
There seems to be no end in sight for electricity price hikes in South Australia and across the nation. The situation prompted a commenter on the AdelaideNow story to state:
 
“IF there is a light at the end of the tunnel, turn the bloody thing OFF, we can’t afford it”.