SEEING THE LIGHT: A solar farm in the ACT, which has the highest level of renewables and the lowest power prices in the nation.
SEEING THE LIGHT: A solar farm in the ACT, which has the highest level of renewables and the lowest power prices in the nation. LUKAS COCH

OPINION: Rules, not renewables, drive up cost of power

IT'S interesting that Kerry Latter of Canegrowers Mackay references a university study in his letter today.

Firstly, the study lists increases in the cost of power in New South Wales, Victoria and Queensland - the three states with the lowest renewable energy production.

Secondly, the report, released by the Australian National University this month, found that a 100% renewable energy grid in Australia would be cheaper than sourcing all of our power from coal or gas.

Both of these points fly in the face of the myth that clean energy drives up prices, as do others.

The ACT enjoys the country's cheapest power despite having the highest renewable content and tracking well towards 100% clean energy by the end of the decade.

The real problem with the cost of power and issues of supply and demand is the complex set of rules, written when coal and gas were king, that govern the electricity market.

The current situation means power companies are often financially better off not generating electricity, starving the national grid of power and driving up prices.