MEDIA RELEASE: Wednesday May 30, 2018

Josh Frydenberg is taking his national energy guarantee to the energy ministers' council. Photograph: Mike Bowers for the Guardian
Liberal Party still brawling on energy policy as Australian households continue to be ripped off

If only there was a way to convert the hot air and hatred that fills the Turnbull Government’s party room into electricity, then Australia’s energy problems would be solved.

Tony Abbott and Craig Kelly are doing all they can to strangle Energy Minister Josh Frydenberg’s inadequate energy policy, revealing yet again that members of this government care more about internal politics than the Australian people’s interests.

Meanwhile, Australian households continue to be slugged by over-inflated energy prices and tricked by retailers who have doubled their charges over the past decade.

Electrical Trades Union National Secretary Allen Hicks said the divided Turnbull Government’s continued infighting confirmed how out of touch the Liberals were with the average Australian.

“Working Australians have seen their power bills climb higher and higher while despite half a decade in power Turnbull, Frydenberg and Abbott continue to brawl over whose policy is better for consumers,” Mr Hicks said.

Poor deregulation, coupled with a laissez-faire energy regulator, has allowed private power retailers and generators to reap huge profits, the ETU National Secretary said.

“It’s not ‘over investment’ in networks; it’s over charging for profits and gaming the current system that’s driving up prices,” Mr Hicks said.

Mr Hicks said that the lack of leadership from the Turnbull Government meant Australian consumers were the real losers and they were clearly fed up with higher prices and the Liberal Party.

“It’s no wonder voters are losing what little faith they still had in Turnbull and Frydenberg’s attempts to fix Australia’s energy market mess,” he said.

“Turnbull’s morning teas with power company bosses are doing nothing to pass the lower costs on to consumers.

“It’s bad enough that energy companies slugged customers for taxes they never paid. It’s unforgiveable that Turnbull and Abbott did nothing about it.

“The Australian people want leaders who will pursue policies that lower prices, invest in jobs and renewable energy technologies and tackle climate change, but the Turnbull Government is doing nothing but squabbling amongst itself.

Mr Hicks welcomed a recent Clean Energy Council report that showed industry and households were

moving ahead with renewables, with projects ballooning in Australia by more than $12 billion in

2017, despite the Turnbull Government’s best efforts to suppress investment.

“The energy market is a mess and the Turnbull government only needs to look in the mirror to see who’s responsible,” Mr Hicks said.

Media enquiries:

ETU National Secretary – Allen Hicks

0419 721 037,

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