Eastern Victoria’s unequal power pain

While all Victorians are struggling with soaring energy bills, it’s been revealed eastern Victorians are being slugged significantly more for energy than the inner city.

St Vincent de Paul’s latest energy tracker report shows the average combined gas and electricity energy bill in metropolitan Melbourne is $736 while for regional Victorians it’s $773.

The Nationals Member for Eastern Victoria Region Melina Bath said the rising cost of energy is a real concern and bill stress is having a profound impact on low and middle income earners and small business in her electorate.

“Labor’s lack of energy plan is hurting Victorians and causing inequality and financial stress.

“Eastern Victorians are being punished with the highest combined energy bills in the state.

“Furthermore, Latrobe Valley and Sale have the unwanted title of the highest bill, paying a whopping $810 on average per household for their combined energy costs – despite the region powering Victoria to keep the state’s lights on.

“For well over a decade, Labor’s promised cheap, reliable power, but it’s bungled Victoria’s transition to renewables and caused sky high bills and a volatile energy market at risk of rolling blackouts.”

In July 2022 the average annual combined bill in eastern Victoria was $3615.

Now in July 2023, the average annual combined energy household bill in eastern Victoria is $4425, while the inner city and inner eastern suburbs pay $3995.

Ms Bath said the discrepancies in energy costs between eastern Victoria and the inner city were unjustifiable.

“Labor cannot keep punishing our households and businesses with exorbitant bills and an unreliable energy grid.

“The Nationals are calling on Labor to deliver a detailed common sense plan to deliver a just transition and reliable and affordable power to all Victorians regardless of where you live.”