Queensland Treasurer Tim Nicholls.
Queensland Treasurer Tim Nicholls. Dave Hunt

Queensland power prices up $1200 a family in six years

LABOR's decision to sell off Queensland's electricity assets will continue to hurt average families who will now have to find about $200 a year to pay for power.

The Queensland Competition Authority on Wednesday announced that power prices would rise by 13.6%.

The Newman government, which went to the election promising to cut family bills, blamed the federal government for its carbon tax.

Treasurer Tim Nicholls said the carbon tax was imposing a real cost on Queensland electricity consumers.

"The QCA's own figures show that without the carbon tax electricity would rise by 5.4 per cent instead of the predicted 13.6 per cent,'' Mr Nicholl said in a statement.

"On some tariffs the price of electricity would actually go down if the carbon tax were abolished," Mr Nicholls said.

"Over the last two years the average family has paid more than $300 in carbon tax on their electricity bills.''

News Corp reported the power price hike was the seventh consecutive rise since former Labor Premier Peter Beattie dreregulated the power industry in 2007.

At the time Mr Beattie promised that more competition would mean lower bills.

Instead, for an average family household, bills have risen more than $1200 in six years, News reported.

Mr Nicholls urged Queenslanders to lobby Labor Senators to abolish the carbon tax before Christmas.

Minister for Energy and Water Supply Mark McArdle said the draft price determination confirmed the pressure placed on households by the carbon tax.

"With the carbon tax removed the typical household would save $116, the average family of four would save $174 and that would go up to $240 for a family with four children," he said.

"Without the carbon tax, the charges for residential Tariffs 31 and 33 would decrease by 6.7 per cent and 3 per cent respectively.

"Businesses would save between 7 and 10 per cent on their electricity bills depending on which tariff they are using. The only people standing between small business operators and lower electricity bills are your local Labor Senators."

Mr Nicholls said the Federal Government was trying to remove the carbon tax but the Labor Party, which claims to represent ordinary Australians, refuses to scrap this job destroying tax.

"The truth revealed by the National Greenhouse Gas Inventory is that the carbon tax has cost billions but resulted in a lowering of carbon emissions of just one-twentieth of one per cent."

Mr McArdle said the draft price determination by the QCA also confirmed the importance of the Newman Government's electricity reform agenda.

Public submissions on the draft QCA determination close on 28 February and a final determination is due in May.

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