Joint submission by the ACT Energy Consumers Policy Consortium (ACT Council of Social Service (ACTCOSS), Care Financial Counselling Service, Conservation Council ACT Region, SEE-Change, and Small Business Taskforce of the Canberra Business Chamber) to the Preliminary Report of the Independent Review into the Future Security of the National Electricity Market.
The ACT Energy Consumers Policy Consortium welcomes the broad based direction of the review and considers that any change to policy relating to the future security of the National Electricity Market needs to recognise that:
- Electricity is an essential service, every person needs access to affordable electricity for daily life
- New technologies should form the basis of future investment
- That while consumers may be driving change, vulnerable consumers do not have the same choices as other consumers
- Price increases impact the vulnerable more severely and unaffordable electricity can result in health problems if people are avoiding heating and cooling
- Vulnerable consumers are often ill-informed of the choices available
- Hardship programs are essential for vulnerable consumers
- Low-emission solutions to counter problems with renewable technology need to be promoted over out-dated coal technology.