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“Biggest crisis in a lifetime”, “worse than GFC” hits Australian business — electricity costs

Posted By Jo Nova On November 11, 2018 @ 3:22 am In Global Warming | Comments Disabled

The closures and “heartbreaking” decisions are escalating as electricity contracts for businesses are being renegotiated in the new era of higher wholesale electricity prices. Family run operations that have survived for 40 years are being destroyed. Years of work, investment and training are being erased.

UPDATE: Dated July 2017

Businesses brace for crippling energy bill increases

Frank Chung News.com

“This is the biggest business crisis I’ve seen in my lifetime,” said Peter Strong, chief executive of the Council of Small Business Australia. “The GFC was managed and it affected everybody, but this is only Australia and we cannot see a solution.

“What we’re hearing is terrible. We’re seeing closures have already started, I fully expect there will be more closures and staff put off. When you’re running a small supermarket, where do you find an extra $70,000?”

Businesses are more exposed to the rapidly rising wholesale electricity costs than householders are, and long term contracts are being renegotiated. As they do, rises of 120% are hitting small businesses.

The price hikes hitting businesses of up 120 per cent — dwarfing the 20 per cent increases faced by households — have been partly blamed on the closure of cheap coal-fired power stations, including Hazelwood in Victoria and Playford in South Australia.

Another key driver has been the high price of gas, partially due to a shortage of east coast domestic supply.

Managing director [of Plastic Granulating Services] Stephen Scherer said his monthly electricity bill had increased from about $80,000 to $180,000 over the past year-and-a-half,…

 Blame Tony Abbott, what else?

Sadly Peter Strong thinks the problem is a mythical creature called a “policy deadlock”.  The only deadlock in Australia is the poison grip of rampant renewables subsidies which have relentlessly increased year after year without missing a day:

The small business lobby group says urgent action is needed to resolve the decade-long national deadlock on energy policy in the face of what’s being described as a bigger crisis than the GFC.

Mr Strong hit out at the Liberal backbench for being too focused on “ideology”. “The dissenters in the Libs need to shut up and go away,” he said.

“Tony Abbott in particular is the reason nothing has been done. The Finkel Report is a good report and it needs to be actioned. To promise power prices would go down [through scrapping the carbon tax] and to have them go up 110 per cent is one of the biggest policy failures we’ve ever seen.”

Abbott couldn’t have solved the electricity rises unless he axed the RET. Axing the carbon tax helped, but was not enough.

Someone needs to write to Peter Strong. Ask him what kind of electricity and policy kept small businesses running for 40 years.

Unreliable renewables are destroying businesses, the last thing we need is more of them.


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