“The final decision allows for an average price increase of 18 per cent across New South Wales, including inflation, primarily as a result of rising network (poles and wires) costs and the introduction of the carbon price,” the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART) said.
IPART cited retail-related costs associated with billing, metering and marketing as an additional driver of an increase in the average regulated retail electricity prices across New South Wales.
To read an analysis of the IPART pricing determination from EcoGeneration Master Class presenter Nigel Morris of Solar Business Services, click here.
The average price increases will vary for customers of the three regulated electricity retailers:
- 20.6 per cent for EnergyAustralia customers
- 11.8 per cent for Integral Energy customers
- 19.7 per cent for Country Energy customers.
IPART Chair Peter Boxall said “There are aspects of the National Electricity Rules and the National Electricity Law that could be changed to reduce pressure on prices and to make sure that expenditure on the electricity network is efficient.
“We’ve also outlined some areas around reliability standards, green schemes, and subsidies that could be reviewed to limit future price increases,” he added.
According to the final report on the price determination, Federal and New South Wales Government schemes designed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (excluding the carbon pricing mechanism) account for 0.3 per cent of the total drivers of the increase in retail electricity prices.
Regulated retail gas prices will also increase by 9–15 per cent across New South Wales from 1 July 2012, with the price increases for individual customers depending on their standard retailer and their annual consumption. For the majority of customers, approximately half of the increase is due to the introduction of the carbon price, and the other half is due to increases in gas distribution network prices – which are regulated by the Australian Energy Regulator.
To view the final report on pricing and accompanying documents, click here.