Why would we want to have another organisation involved in the power game, there are already four well staffed agencies and one of them, Energy Consumers Australia is committed to promoting the long-term interests of Australian residential and small business energy consumers. It says so on the website so it must be true.
Has anyone seen or heard anything from this organization in recent times while power prices doubled? That is just for ordinary people, what about the plight of the baker who Judith Sloan met in Queensland.
He was looking at his latest financial statement. His annual power bill last financial year was $114,000. It had been a tad over $30,000 two years before.
He employs 30 people, some on a part-time basis. Business seemed to be brisk but it’s hard to put up the price of pies and buns too much without demand dropping.
It’s easy to concentrate on the impact of rising electricity prices on households. In real terms, the average retail price of electricity over the 10 years ending in 2017-18 rose by 51 per cent and the average retail bill rose by 35 per cent (people have used less electricity, in part because of the higher prices).
But for many small and medium-sized businesses, the increase in their electricity bills has been higher again. Many are exposed to the full variations in wholesale prices, which have risen from less than $40 a megawatt hour to more than $100/MWh before settling around the $70 to $80/MWh mark. This threatens the viability of a number of businesses.
You don’t need a Harvard MBA to see that increasing an essential input to a bakery by a factor of four is not a sustainable trend but what is going to stop it? What does Energy Consumers Australia think about this?
The CEO was on ABC Q&A on sustainable energy a year or so ago and it was an RE love-in. I don’t recall any concerns about the root cause of the price problem but there was a suggestion to improve the energy efficiency of public housing.
Under the circumstances there seems to be a gap in the market for an organisation that is concerned about the root cause and makes a case for something more than bandaids for consumers who are metaphorically bleeding to death.
I was about to declare myself the founding member of this association but prudently did a search to be sure that someone else has not got there first. And they have, the rotters! They are not only well established, they have been very effective. It says so on their very professional website.
The Energy Users’ Association of Australia plays a critical role in helping companies navigate uncertainty in energy markets, participate in driving changes in market rules and the way the network is managed, to ensure better outcomes and reduced costs for energy users.
Through our efforts, we have contributed to saving our members millions of dollars on their energy bills.
Millions of dollars in savings! I wonder what they are doing to help Judith’s baker?
Who are the stalwart citizens who comprise the membership of this public spirited and philanthropic organisation? Check them out. Not a good look to find AEMO among them. Others can offer opinions on the others.
Maybe there is still room for some competition in that market!
And in case the price of power is not scary enough be warned about the impending plague of rats and other horrors flagged by Jo Nova.