Senate examines power price hikes


Consumers may be paying too much for electricity because they can’t access information about the pricing policies of power companies.

The comments were made during Senate hearing into electricity prices in Brisbane.

Laura Finlayson reports.

TRANSCRIPT

The Senate committee is taking submissions from consumers and interested parties as part of its brief to look into the key causes of electricity price increases over recent years and those likely in the future.

That includes looking into transmission and investment decisions in the industry and the impacts of those decisions on prices.

One Big Switch made its submission at the Brisbane hearing today.

One Big Switch is a for profit organisation that negotiates with power companies for the lowest prices by encouraging large blocks of consumers to switch electricity suppliers.

The community network organisation says one of its main aims is to help consumers, by providing them with relevant data and technology so they can make their own price comparisons.

Christopher Zinn, One Big Switch campaign director: “Industries hold data and that’s very powerful. Consumers need to get that data so they can use it in their interests. Data in the future is what electricity is going to be all about.”

Although this campaign is the first of its kind, it could be the beginning for Australians in understanding and having control over their electricity bills.

The Senate committe will hold its next hearing in Canberra early next week and make its final report next month.

Laura Finlayson, QUT News.