mattau

Why are my power bills so high?

53 posts in this topic

Hey everyone,

Frugality is a big part of living simply, and also in order to save for investments, etc.

It's hard to be frugal though when power bills keep increasing!

Came across an article which explains that the reason why bills are getting higher is due to the electricity intensive lifestyles that many Aussies now have - e.g use of computers, TV, wifi, etc.

Bills have gone up about $100-200 in 2011, and are actually expected to rise even more with the carbon tax!!!!

What are your thoughts?

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Reduce your belongings to what you can carry; mobile phone, laptop, clothes. Get rid of the house, car, boat, furniture, memorabilia, etc. Move to within walking distance/public transport route of your workplace. Terminate all contractual obligations besides telecommunications access and health insurance. Limit spending to GST-exempt food.

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It's quite dependent on the state. WA's bills are skyrocketing because 2 years ago the retailer was charging 12c/kwh and they are trying to get it upto 20c/kwh in line with costs. Vic hasn't been very bad, with smartmeters adding a minor daily cost increase. A big part of it is just usage - people have more stuff.

I've had a chance to see my 30 minute interval usage recently and it's interesting to see my baseline. My usage is shown below with each row showing a day. My baseline hovers around 150 - 200 watts per hour which appears to be a little below average.

Edit was to attach the usage. It's csv but I couldn't load it with that extension.

interval data.txt

Edited by wim

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What are your thoughts?

Can't tell you enough how thrilled I am about it! I read recently that they're going up again next month. :censored:

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Can't tell you enough how thrilled I am about it! I read recently that they're going up again next month. :censored:

No need to answer but I'd be interested:

- how much do you use

- what is the price increase

- has there been any usage increases

- what state are you in

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Energy prices are increasing for a number of reasons. The major one being the neglected Infrastructure that requires upgrading.

$42 billion in the next 5 years and up to $240 billion by 2030 according to the latest report so I don't expect that the increases will slow any time soon. Energy consumption per capita has declined around ~5% according to the Energy in Australia 2011 report

20% renewable energy targets by 2020 are adding about 7%.

Carbon tax alone is about an extra 1.7% and if you earn a low income you will be compensated.

One of the few things I would like to own a house for would be to install solar. It's going to be increasingly worth the outlay IMHO.

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The major one being the neglected Infrastructure that requires upgrading.

"Infrastructure that would give a competitive advantage in future if it was upgraded now but does not necessarily need investment now" is also being upgraded I suspect.

If the government gave me a bit of wiggle room on what I could pass on to my customers under the guise of "necessary upgrades" I would certainly take advantage of that to strengthen my place in the market.

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Energy prices are increasing for a number of reasons. The major one being the neglected Infrastructure that requires upgrading.

$42 billion in the next 5 years and up to $240 billion by 2030 according to the latest report so I don't expect that the increases will slow any time soon. Energy consumption per capita has declined around ~5% according to the Energy in Australia 2011 report

20% renewable energy targets by 2020 are adding about 7%.

Carbon tax alone is about an extra 1.7% and if you earn a low income you will be compensated.

One of the few things I would like to own a house for would be to install solar. It's going to be increasingly worth the outlay IMHO.

We have had our new bidirectional meter installed for about three weeks now. There are only two retirees in the house and we're fairly careful with our power usage. Below is a copy of the graph showing our Solar Output, any surplus over and above our usage and the value of that surplus @ $0.52 /KWh

ea087823.png

Here's a precis of my figures.

bfd6dc3d.gif

We were told by our installer that we could expect our 3KW system to generate an average of about $420-450 per quarter. From the figures so far i'd say he was pretty close to the mark. If that proves to be the case, that means I should earn about 16-17% on my outlay. That's a damn sight better than I'm getting on my Super, so for me it's a great investment,... so far. :rolleyes:

Edited by Popeye

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Because they have to make a profit.

But not just any profit...

NOOO!

Profits nowadays have to be in the order of 25% minimum for a company to be considered successful.

Many want 300% to prove to the world how profitable they are. :shocking:

Little do they realise they are slowly but surely strangling the goose, who laid the golden egg for them.

And its not just power companies doing this.

Its all companies, all hanging out at the same trough.

The home of the lil aussie battler.

But one day (I hope its soon), they might learn, that once households have no more money, they stop paying bills, which means their power gets turned off, which means they don't sell as much..

All built on the ideology of the only economy is a growing economy.

How's that Mattau!

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Because they have to make a profit.

<snip>

Exactly, and the other thing that shareholders always want is GROWTH.

Where can growth come from when everyone already has electricity?

Higher prices!

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"Infrastructure that would give a competitive advantage in future if it was upgraded now but does not necessarily need investment now" is also being upgraded I suspect.

If the government gave me a bit of wiggle room on what I could pass on to my customers under the guise of "necessary upgrades" I would certainly take advantage of that to strengthen my place in the market.

Oh yes. Business will unfailingly grab whatever advantage they can. I can't blame them for that. Ferguson is pushing privatisation of the industry and pushing in the direction of gas and wind :shocking: (with the door to nuclear left open) There are of course up front costs for the transition away from coal I guess. Public money will be needed to drive this transition and there's a billion for alternates (solar, wind, geothermal and carbon sequestration (which is unfortunate)

I take your point that business are better at negotiation than government. As a taxpayer, I would happily pay you a fortune to save us fortune with your own hardball negotiation techniques tor. :) Public servants don't see the money as being their own. No one ever gets sacked for buying IBM/Microsoft products.

The good IMHO thing about the rising prices is that it makes the alternatives more attractive. :) Gas is only a transitional energy source apparently on the way to somewhere else. Lucky we've got a bunch of gas!

It could be argued that economies of scale with larger scale upgrades. Early upgrading of something that you know you will need to upgrade sooner rather than later might provide a saving. Your workers would get better at the job. I get the impression that private enterprise doesn't always do this though. Some run the infrastructure into the ground and only when it is falling apart and they've screwed as much out of it as they can do they act. The second business model may be cheaper in the short term but eventually they are going to piss you off when it fails and they are left playing catchup.

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I have come to favour the corporate and elitist greed. The sooner the people are tapped out the sooner this sham of a human economy implodes. I want to be alive to see how human society deals with it and reorganises itself.

I put some East German austerity into my workplace in November 2008. People hated being on a leash and they joined forces to have one control measure after another undone after September 2009. I eventually gave up the fight in May 2011 because I was a lone ranger and I "let them have it". The repercussions are starting to show based on the non-austere decisions. Performance is now worse than during the GFC (which never really ended). Everything in supply chains has a lag and we are about to get hit with a sledgehammer. I am just waiting to see what happens. I have everything ready to go ultra-austere again but this time I want the company to ask me to implement it instead of me begging for the chance to lead without acknowledgement like in November 2008. Only the future will show if the company chooses to break, if the break distance is shorter than the remaining distance to the cliff edge and if the company chooses me to step on the breaks or places its faith in one of the people who caused the performance demolition.

The way I see it I am not alone. I see many people in a variety of roles with income of less than $100,000 "going slow" because there is no point in working hard and doing the right thing if it leads to somebody else's bonus or promotion. There is a lot of silent protesting going on out there in the workplace. Executive management around the world has lost all commitment from its workers.

Edited by sydney3000

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I have come to favour the corporate and elitist greed. The sooner the people are tapped out the sooner this sham of a human economy implodes. I want to be alive to see how human society deals with it and reorganises itself.

I put some East German austerity into my workplace in November 2008. People hated being on a leash and they joined forces to have one control measure after another undone after September 2009. I eventually gave up the fight in May 2011 because I was a lone ranger and I "let them have it". The repercussions are starting to show based on the non-austere decisions. Performance is now worse than during the GFC (which never really ended). Everything in supply chains has a lag and we are about to get hit with a sledgehammer. I am just waiting to see what happens. I have everything ready to go ultra-austere again but this time I want the company to ask me to implement it instead of me begging for the chance to lead without acknowledgement like in November 2008. Only the future will show if the company chooses to break, if the break distance is shorter than the remaining distance to the cliff edge and if the company chooses me to step on the breaks or places its faith in one of the people who caused the performance demolition.

The way I see it I am not alone. I see many people in a variety of roles with income of less than $100,000 "going slow" because there is no point in working hard and doing the right thing if it leads to somebody else's bonus or promotion. There is a lot of silent protesting going on out there in the workplace. Executive management around the world has lost all commitment from its workers.

There's a gag doing the rounds in the APS at the moment. A senior executive in my own department is claimed to have said:

All of your good ideas are my good ideas

All of your bad ideas are your bad ideas

Al of my bad ideas are your bad ideas

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<br>because there is no point in working hard and doing the right thing if it leads to somebody else's bonus or promotion. There is a lot of silent protesting going on out there in the workplace. Executive management around the world has lost all commitment from its workers.<br>
<br><br>Yup<br><br><br>There’s a serious disparity in effort and reward at my employer

<div><br></div><div><br></div><div>EDIT TO ADD</div><div><br></div><div><br></div><div>Bloke at works off on holidays. His whole days work is being done in two hours. The supervisor won’t be saying anything about it, meanwhile I’m being smashed, the 2ic say’s my role requires two people. </div>

Edited by Easy Tiger

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We have had our new bidirectional meter installed for about three weeks now. There are only two retirees in the house and we're fairly careful with our power usage. Below is a copy of the graph showing our Solar Output, any surplus over and above our usage and the value of that surplus @ $0.52 /KWh

ea087823.png

Here's a precis of my figures.

bfd6dc3d.gif

We were told by our installer that we could expect our 3KW system to generate an average of about $420-450 per quarter. From the figures so far i'd say he was pretty close to the mark. If that proves to be the case, that means I should earn about 16-17% on my outlay. That's a damn sight better than I'm getting on my Super, so for me it's a great investment,... so far. :rolleyes:

That's way cool. :thumbsup: You are a supplier now. :)

There are problems emerging with solar in the ACT however...

What is your feed in tariff in SA? They have recently watered down the tariff here in the ACT. Far too generous. Some lucky sods got a really good deal for the next 20 years. TBH incentives need to be reduced in this area. The solar industry must stand on it's own feet. PV cells are getting cheaper (Thanks to china apparently) :blush: The whole solar scheme here in the ACT was woefully mishandled. They created a gold rush not unlike the pink bats scheme. 80% of inspections are failing here. Lot's of fly by night installers that have now buggered off owing heaps.

The risk is of course that a recession will lower the price of fossil fuels and make them more cost effective again than alternatives. Although a price on carbon will help in that regard. ;)

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<br><br>Yup<br><br><br>There’s a serious disparity in effort and reward at my employer

<div><br></div><div><br></div><div>EDIT TO ADD</div><div><br></div><div><br></div><div>Bloke at works off on holidays. His whole days work is being done in two hours. The supervisor won’t be saying anything about it, meanwhile I’m being smashed, the 2ic say’s my role requires two people. </div>

Are you angry enough to join a union yet?

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Because they have to make a profit.

But not just any profit...

NOOO!

Profits nowadays have to be in the order of 25% minimum for a company to be considered successful.

Many want 300% to prove to the world how profitable they are. :shocking:

Little do they realise they are slowly but surely strangling the goose, who laid the golden egg for them.

And its not just power companies doing this.

Its all companies, all hanging out at the same trough.

The home of the lil aussie battler.

But one day (I hope its soon), they might learn, that once households have no more money, they stop paying bills, which means their power gets turned off, which means they don't sell as much..

All built on the ideology of the only economy is a growing economy.

How's that Mattau!

Only when the last tree has been cut down; Only when the last river has been poisoned; Only when the last fish has been caught; Only then will you find that money cannot be eaten.

Gold however is used in certain indian desserts.

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Are you angry enough to join a union yet?

Nope because my employer is all over the union.

The last effort by the union was made up of

* an A4 announcement on a notice board (that no-one reads) on the day the reps were visiting

* the meeting room across from the HR bitch

* union reps being told that no-one was interested and asked to leave after 45 minutes

You’d think that with a Labor Federal and State government it’d be a union paradise. Ha. My employer breaches numerous laws but what can you do?(and keep your job). Hell, I refused to do a task that I deemed as dangerous and I was hauled over the coals over it.

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Nope because my employer is all over the union.

The last effort by the union was made up of

* an A4 announcement on a notice board (that no-one reads) on the day the reps were visiting

* the meeting room across from the HR bitch

* union reps being told that no-one was interested and asked to leave after 45 minutes

You’d think that with a Labor Federal and State government it’d be a union paradise. Ha. My employer breaches numerous laws but what can you do?(and keep your job). Hell, I refused to do a task that I deemed as dangerous and I was hauled over the coals over it.

It sounds like you are in a bad workplace my friend. There are rules governing union access to workplaces but your joint sounds like a sweatshop. You have my sympathies. What are the possibilities for organising your workmates into an 'enterprise collective'? (It sounds better than union) Do they feel the same as you?

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I like solar hot water because it doesn't depend on feed in tariffs that pollies can slash at the stroke of a pen - it simply permanently reduces your consumption.

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That's way cool. :thumbsup: You are a supplier now. :)

There are problems emerging with solar in the ACT however...

What is your feed in tariff in SA? They have recently watered down the tariff here in the ACT. Far too generous. Some lucky sods got a really good deal for the next 20 years. TBH incentives need to be reduced in this area. The solar industry must stand on it's own feet. PV cells are getting cheaper (Thanks to china apparently) :blush: The whole solar scheme here in the ACT was woefully mishandled. They created a gold rush not unlike the pink bats scheme. 80% of inspections are failing here. Lot's of fly by night installers that have now buggered off owing heaps.

The risk is of course that a recession will lower the price of fossil fuels and make them more cost effective again than alternatives. Although a price on carbon will help in that regard. ;)

And to think that I very nearly missed out.

My faith in the scheme was severely shaken when earlier this year several of the power suppliers slashed their feed in rates,... fortunately the Government put it right again. But, like so many others, this sowed seeds of doubt in my mind and it was not until the last couple of weeks where the old feed in rates were still being offered that after much procrastination and ringing about to installers, I finally bit the bullet. For those approved before the end of September, the feed in rate in SA is 44c per KWh with a further few cents being paid by your supplier. I'm with AGL and they pay 8c, making my total 52c/KWh and our contract is until 2027 by which time I will be long past caring.

I'd be quite happy if the relatively high return only lasted until my outlay was recouped, and then reverted to the same as what we are charged per KWh (22c). Even at this lower rate, I would be getting a minimum 12% return on my outlay, which in today's economic climate is not bad.

I have a son and Daughter in law in the ACT and they have not been able to take advantage of the scheme because they are presently living in a strata title unit in Cook, until their house is built (in Weetangera) just down the road.

Knowing what I know now, I would still have solar power installed even with the new lower feed in rates as I can really only see power prices increasing, and every increase is a virtual increase in your return.

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id be happy if i wasnt paying for not only my own power, but your solar panels.

50c a kw is insane, buy yourself a gas powered gernator, and run it 24/7 and wind the f*cken profits up/.

it only costs something like 12c a kw

f*cked if i can find costs to produce dammit

http://www.cfcl.com.au/BlueGen/

Edited by savagegoose

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id be happy if i wasnt paying for not only my own power, but your solar panels.

50c a kw is insane, buy yourself a gas powered gernator, and run it 24/7 and wind the f*cken profits up/.

it only costs something like 12c a kw

f*cked if i can find costs to produce dammit

http://www.cfcl.com.au/BlueGen/

That is also true, the way that it is structured leads to a "bugger thy neighbour" arms race to have the biggest solar outfit.

I reckon the power companies (like Chinese GDP) start with a revenue target to satisfy their shareholders and their bonus targets.

Then they look at the quantity of electricity they are selling and figure out what they need to charge to achieve their targets. Solar reduces the quantity they can sell, therefore the price is higher than it would otherwise be.

If you don't have solar you pay twice - taxes going to other peoples' subsidies, plus higher prices.

I have a small PV system (it offsets what I use during the day working from home, rather than feeding in much) and solar hot water. It has made a big difference to my bills; I no longer have a new one torn once a quarter.

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