How much will electricity prices rise in 2017 across Australia?

Peter Terlato 14 December 2016

Electricity bill shock energy cost

Increases from $28 to $204, depending on the state.

Residential electricity bills across Australia are expected to rise in every state, aside from Queensland and Tasmania, over the next two years, according to the latest research.

Analysing the Australian Energy Market Commission's (AEMC) 2016 Residential Electricity Price Trends report, future electricity prices looks set to rise throughout most parts of the country, driven by substantial increases in wholesale costs following the cessation of operations at the Hazelwood coal-fired power station in Victoria.

Electricity bills are anticipated to rise between $28 and $204 by 2018/19, depending upon where you live, compared with a scenario where Hazelwood did not close.

The report also expects a modest increase in network costs for a number of areas, although the distribution of network revenues in NSW, ACT, Victoria and South Australia pose a challenge.

The highest paying customers in 2018/19 are expected to be Tasmanians ($1,899) and those in the Northern Territory ($1,855). Victorians ($1,185) are anticipated to receive the cheapest electricity bills.

State by state:

New South Wales

Wholesale costs will push up electricity costs by an average 3.9% per year over the next two years. Prices are estimated to rise just 0.9% in 2017/18 but a much larger increase (6.9%) is anticipated in 2018/19.

2015/16: $1,199
2016/17: $1,317
2017/18: $1,330
2018/19: $1,421

Queensland

Bills expected to decrease 6.8% in 2017/18 but jump up 4.2% in 2018/19, equivalent to an annual average decrease of 1.5% over two years, offset by reduced costs for the Queensland Solar Bonus Scheme.

2015/16: $1,329
2016/17: $1,370
2017/18: $1,277
2018/19: $1,330

Victoria

An average annual increase of 3.5% is expected over the next two years. A sharp rise (8.4%) in 2017/18 precedes a fall of 1.3% in 2018/19. These rises are largely due to the closure of Hazelwood.

2015/16: $1,099
2016/17: $1,107
2017/18: $1,200
2018/19: $1,185

Australian Capital Territory (ACT)

Expect a rise of 9.3% by 2018/19 as a result of increased costs for feed-in tariff schemes, designed to boost investment in renewable energy. Prices set to grow 5.7% in 2017/18 and a further 13% in 2018/19.

2015/16: $1,348
2016/17: $1,431
2017/18: $1,513
2018/19: $1,709

South Australia

Bills are estimated to rise 2.4% each year for the next two years, driven by a 7.2% increase in 2017/18, followed by a decrease of 2.2% in 2018/19. Prices may go down as more wind power comes on line.

2015/16: $1,487
2016/17: $1,602
2017/18: $1,717
2018/19: $1,679

Western Australia

Residential electricity prices are set to rise 7% in 2017/18 but fall by the same proportion (-7%) in 2018/19, for an average annual increase of 7% over two years. Residential electricity prices are set by the state government and the inflation is mostly due to rising wholesale costs.

2015/16: $1,371
2016/17: $1,412
2017/18: $1,511
2018/19: $1,617

Northern Territory

The average annual bill costs is anticipated to jump up 2.5% by 2018/19. This is due to a 2.5% rise in both 2017/18 and 2018/19. Prices are set by the territory government and are less than the cost of supply.

2015/16: $1,789
2016/17: $1,765
2017/18: $1,810
2018/19: $1,855

Tasmania

A modest increase of 0.6% is expected in 2017/18, with costs falling (-1.7%) in 2018/19. This is equivalent to an average annual decrease of 0.6% between 2016/17 and 2018/19. Residential electricity prices are set by the Tasmanian Economic Regulator. Decreasing network costs are keeping prices down.

2015/16: $1,856
2016/17: $1,920
2017/18: $1,931
2018/19: $1,899

Last month we reported household debt for electricity and gas bills had fallen, with fewer Australians on payment plans and more households completing hardship programs to avoid disconnection.

Use our comprehensive guide to compare and contrast different offers from a variety of energy suppliers.

We've also got tips to help you properly read your energy bill and understand the fees you encounter.

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