Power prices: Australia has a gold-plated electricity grid that consumers can’t afford

The Australian energy system stands as a monument to vested interests.

Key points:

  • The majority of a grid owners’ income is guaranteed by the regulators’ valuation of the network
  • The Australian network is valued at $US75b, compared to the entire US network valued at $US100b
  • When the grids’ earnings fall, prices can go up to cover the shortfall

It is a system controlled by owners who are protected from market forces and state governments content to milk consumers for all they’re worth and more — because the rules allow it.

“The operators have spent a lot of money on building their networks to potentially provide excessive reliability,” Craig Memery from the Public Interest Advocacy Centre says…

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