22 June 2012, 10:12 BST
Increased uptake of solar energy and energy efficiency are contributing to a reduction in power consumption and wholesale power prices across Australia's National Electricity Market, according to a new report released by the REC Agents Association.
The report, prepared by Green Energy Markets, states that clean energy and energy efficiency schemes saved Australians 3,455 GWh in 2011, 1.7 per cent of total electricity consumption.
The contribution from solar energy and energy efficiency under these schemes is set to treble over the next three years, so that by 2015, electricity consumption will be reduced by more than 5 per cent (approximately 10,664 GWh).
"Market-based schemes such as the Renewable Energy Target and the energy savings schemes have been successful in the large-scale deployment of greenhouse reduction technologies, and have done so in a way that reduces costs to customers," said Ric Brazzale, author of the report and the President of the REC Agents Association (RAA).
"It is the cost of transporting the electricity through monopoly network businesses that is out of control; the cost of actually producing the electricity is falling.
"Government schemes that support solar and energy efficiency have been successful in keeping a lid on wholesale power prices, which are their lowest level in real terms for more than ten years."
The report states that residential electricity prices are expected to increase by 37 per cent over the three- year period to 2013-14. The largest contributor to this increase is distribution charges, which account for 34 per cent of the increase; the carbon pricing mechanism accounts for 21 per cent of the increase, and green schemes accounting for 10 per cent of the increase.
The report is available by clicking here.
Source: EcoGeneration Australia