Julia Gillard’s new pledge to Australians should read “There will be no more affordable electricity under a government I lead.”
At least US President Obama back in January 2008 was honest enough to admit that “under my plan of cap and trade, electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket.”
Electricity generators have warned that they face a cashflow crunch of hundreds of millions of dollars to buy carbon tax permits as the latest greenhouse gas emissions figures suggest almost $4 billion of the $7.7bn to be raised in the first year of the policy will come from power companies.
Data from the Climate Change Department yesterday shows the power generation sector accounted for about 170 million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions in the 2010-11 financial year, which could mean a carbon tax bill of $3.9bn if repeated next year.
The two NSW state-owned generators – Macquarie Generation and Delta Electricity – were the two biggest emitters in 2010-11, with 20.3 million tonnes and 19.8 million tonnes in CO2 emissions respectively.
If the same emissions levels were repeated next year, Macquarie would face a carbon tax bill of more than $466m and Delta would pay $455m, based on the government’s starting carbon price of $23 a tonne from July.