In the interests of full disclosure, the Nature Conservation Council of NSW has today called on Premier Barry O’Farrell to require the full costs of coal-fired power be detailed on household power bills in addition to the cost of the carbon price and renewable energy schemes.
“Premier Barry O’Farrell should come clean and spell out on energy bills that the main driver of electricity bill increases in NSW is spending of $17.9 billion on wires and poles,” Chief Executive Officer Pepe Clarke said today.
“An honest account of the ‘true’ cost of coal-fired power for NSW would consider the full range of costs to the community and our environment, now and for future generations.
“An Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering report found the cost of coal-fired energy could double if health and environmental impacts were included in energy prices. Let’s see some Treasury figures for the social and environmental impacts of fossil fuel energy, and the extra burden of health damage added to power bills.
“A prudent account of electricity prices would also factor in the millions, if not billions, we’ll need to prevent or mitigate the impacts of rising sea levels, increased natural disasters and other impacts of climate change.
“The State government is wasting an incredible amount of energy in a campaign against renewable power and the transition to a low-carbon economy in NSW, with the Premier front and centre in opposing wind power.
The Commonwealth, other Australian states and countries such as Germany and Spain are on the path to a clean energy future. Government denial of the benefits of renewable power means NSW risks missing out on the economic kick-start and job creation from green energy investment,” Mr Clarke said.
Front page photo: Martin Howard