Inquiry into ‘gold plating’ of power networks good news - Solar Citizens

Inquiry into ‘gold plating’ of power networks good news

Solar Citizens has welcomed the establishment yesterday of a Senate Inquiry into the allegation that ‘gold plating’ of Australia's electricity networks is artificially driving up the cost of electricity.

The Inquiry follows ABC reports this week claiming up to 60% of electricity bills for some households can be attributed to the cost passed on by electricity companies for maintaining infrastructure such as poles and wires.

It is also about two weeks since a front page Courier Mail article featuring a whistleblower who claimed staff at the Queensland government-run Energex manipulated data to keep household power bills high.

Solar Citizens Campaigns Director Claire O’Rourke said Australians deserve to know why electricity prices have soared for so many non-solar households.

“Australians have been kept in the dark on the reasons they’ve experienced bill shock as electricity prices have risen over the past five years,” Ms O’Rourke said.

“Renewable energy has been demonised as the cause but the Inquiry will investigate whether the real culprit is the extensive ‘gold plating’ of electricity infrastructure and the greed of the major power companies.

“The Government’s own Warburton Review of the Renewable Energy Target found renewable energy sources including solar would lower electricity prices for all electricity users in the long-term.

“There are already 1.3 million Australian households that have made the move to manage their cost of living by installing solar.

“Solar creates jobs, encourages investment and helps Australian families take control of their power bills.

“All of our political parties should help support solar with policies that help people install solar and ensure a healthy future for the industry,” she said.

Media contact: Jane Garcia 0434 489 533