How much will my electricity bill rise under the carbon tax?


Electricity prices for Australian households are set to rise this weekend, and it seems some states will be hit harder than others.

Electricity prices are set to rise across Australia, and some states will be hit harder than others.

The Federal Government says 6 out of 10 households will be fully or over-compensated for the carbon tax through income tax cuts and increased welfare and pension payments.

In the lead-up to the tax's implementation on July 1, several projections have been released to show power customers how much more they'll pay.

Here's a snapshot of electricity price increases in your state. The percentage increase figures below were calculated by consumer group Choice:

New South Wales

Electricity prices will increase by an average of 18%

Back in April, the state's Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART) estimated an average of 16%. But that went up after it found the cost for electricity businesses featured in its first report was too low.

The new carbon price, IPART says, only accounted for half of the increase. The other was due to rising network infrastructure costs (aka "poles and wires").

Other factors include "green schemes" (schemes other than the carbon tax designed to reduce greenhouse emissions) and retail costs (marketing and getting your bill to you on time).

But the cost of generating actual electricity was down by less than 1%.

Click here for the full IPART report on how electricity prices will rise in NSW

South Australia

Electricity prices will increase by an average of 18%

The Essential Services Commission of South Australia says the carbon price would account for just over a quarter of the total increase in power bills.

Other factors include a general rise in network charges, as well as a solar tariff scheme that gives money back to those with certain green energy systems that export electricity back to the grid.

The commission says it will investigate the price rise - particularly the wholesale cost component, which makes up about 40% of the total price.

Click here for more on South Australia's Wholesale Energy costs

Australian Capital Territory

Electricity prices will increase by an average of 17.74%

The Independent Competition and Regulatory Commission (ICRC) also underestimated the ACT's average power price rise back in April.

The Commission says the rise in regulated retail tariffs is largely due to an increase in the cost of wholesale electricity, which is almost entirely attributed to the carbon tax.

The ICRC estimates that under the new tariffs, electricity costs for a typical franchise customer will rise by around $273 a year, or around $5.25 a week

Click here to read the ICRC's final report on retail prices for franchise electricity customers


Electricity prices will increase by up to 15% in some areas

Like other states, Victoria will see different increases depending on location.

Although Victoria's major power suppliers are deregulated, the state government initially said the carbon tax would lead to a 10% rise in power prices.

According to Fairfax, AGL's residential electricity bills will rise by between 12.8 and 14.8%.

Origin isn't too far behind with between 13.8 and 14%, while TRUenergy customers can expect between 8.2 and 9.3%.

Victoria has 15 electricity retailers, but the big three share a grand majority of the state's customers.

Click here for Switchwise's tips for finding the right power company

Western Australia

The state's largest electricity retailer, Synergy, expects its customers will pay an extra 12.63%

Synergy, which is owned by the WA Government, has around one million customers in the state's southwest.

In June the company said due to the carbon tax, customers using an average of nearly 16 units per day on its Home Plan (A1) tariff is expected to pay an additional 9.13% on their electricity bills.

That's on top of a 3.5% increase to residential and business electricity tariffs, and other charges announced in the state budget.

Click here for Synergy's anouncement on how electricity prices will rise in WA


Electricity prices will increase by 10.56% for all households

Australia's smallest state has a relatively low carbon footprint.

And it seems Tasmania was the only state to overshoot its estimates earlier this year.

It was predicting as much as 26%, but the increase will end up being less than half.

It adds up to a $240 rise on an average yearly household bill of $2300 for electricity - a figure agreed to by the Tasmanian Economic Regulator.

Click here to read a full government statement on how electricity prices will rise in Tasmania


The state's most widely used residential tariff will increase by 10.4%, according to research by Queensland University

Australia's third-biggest electricity market is heavily dependent on coal to generate power.

The situation in Queensland is a little more complicated due to several tariffs on offer.

Earlier this year, the state government formally agreed to freeze Queensland's standard domestic electricity tariff (known as Tariff 11) from July 1 at a cost of $60 million.

Premier Campbell Newman says it will save households around $120 a year, and that any price increase would be due to the carbon tax.

But large jumps in other tariffs (for water heaters, air conditioners etc) are scheduled, which could reportedly see an increase of anywhere between 11 and 16% for many households.

Click here to read more about Queensland's power tariffs/pricing

Northern Territory

NT's prices will increase by an average 9.6%

Andrew Macrides, the managing director of Power and Water Corporation told a budget estimates hearing that around 7% of the Territory's increase was due to the carbon tax, while the remaining 3% factored in inflation.

According to the ABC, an average power bill of $2000 a year will see a total increase of a little over $180 in the Top End.

But Macrides says the increases will be lower compared to the southern states because gas fuels 90% of the Territory's electricity.

Source: SBS