Australian electricity bills set to soar

Our electricity grids are clearly under stress as evidenced by these booming AEMO daily average prices. On 6 June I blogged – Surge in wholesale electricity prices last week – and I expected the daily average AEMO prices for the four States would return to be mostly under $50 again. Not so, the South Australian price is trending over $100 and the three big States are near $100 on the 30 day average.
Eventually these booming power prices will feed into power bills and the media is ignoring the issue. NemWatch is worth checking to see which State is generating from what source at any point in time.
Power prices set to rise following legal challenge 27 Feb 2016 Not sure if issues talked about in this SMH article can explain the AEMO price surge of past two months.
Yes, Let’s Triple The Cost Of Electric Power! 23 June 2016 a Wentworth Report by David Archibald.
AEMO annual av RRP 1999-2016 financial years. (RRP = regional reference price)

Comments – anybody know why SA was high in 1999?
Was the 2007 step up in all States something to do with RET?
The Carbon Tax peak shows clear in 2013-14 then RRP seemed to settle in 2015.
AEMO monthly av RRP financial year 2016

Comments – SA was high in winter 2015. Qld spike Feb 2016 is a mystery so far.
Remember the Port Augusta coal fired stations shut on 9 May – so SA price increases in May & June not that odd as supply tightened. But why do the three large States with ample coal generation also show major RRP increases in May and June?

9 thoughts on “Australian electricity bills set to soar”

  1. If Premier Andrews gets his way and Hazelwood shuts down this summer then SA will be paying a lot more, if it can get any.

  2. Portent of things to come – as of 1955 hrs July 7, contribution of renewables to SA grid is…0.35%. Just a cold and still night. (Liquid fuels generating 100 MW and gas 1872 MW). Spot price is $8897.80/MW (is this a misprint). Meanwhile in Victoria, spot price is $133.73/MW.

  3. Snapshot of electricity costs across Australia
    As part of understanding how the rising AEMO regional reference prices might eventually impact our power bills I have put together this chart of electricity rates across the wide brown land. Several readers have sent in data and they mostly happened to be with Origin – marked O. I found much useful data from this AGL page where you enter a postcode and get a rate sheet to download. Localities marked A on my chart. Sites with no A or O were emailed to me with just the numbers. On the AGL page there might be up to 16 choices of “Energy Plan” once you enter a Postcode. I tried to always choose the first on list that said “Two rate meter” and had no solar or extraneous influences and stated – “Electricity Standing offer”. The main take-aways look to be – WA and ACT are cheap – probably subsidised by Govt. certainly ACTEW is Govt owned and I think all the fancy names of the rebadged Western Power are still WA Govt owned. Although Adelaide has the highest standard rate – NSW would make up some $’s with their higher daily charge.

  4. At one time ACT was entitled to a share of power generated by the Snowy scheme on favourable terms. I don’t know if that has any carry-over to current times?
    Victorian electricity users are about to be thrown under a bus as Daniel (the union’s man) Andrews opts for the kind of loony big renewables policies that have helped reduce SA to an economic basket case.

  5. A NSW government educational document gives some idea of the original purpose of and entitlements to generation from the Snowy Mountains Scheme:

    History – Construction
    The Snowy Mountains Hydro-electric Power Act 1949 created the SMA
    and authorised it to construct a hydro-electric works in the Snowy
    Mountains. The SMA was to supply electricity to the Commonwealth
    Government for:
    1 defence purposes
    2 Australian Capital Territory consumption
    3 to provide to a state or state authority if electricity was not needed
    for 1) or 2).

    My recollection is that the surplus electricity, item 3 above, made up about 90% of the total generation.  This surplus was shared between NSW and Victoria on a 2/3, 1/3 basis.

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