The Surprising Cost of Electricity

Using data from OpenNEM here is a plot of the cost per MegaWatthour of the main sources of electricity across eastern Australia since 1999.

Figure 1: Historical Cost of Electricity

Plainly the price of electricity supplied by major generators rocketed up in 2022.  Gas and coal were far more expensive than wind and solar. 

QED, would say Chris Bowen and Albo.

But hydro was more expensive than coal- and has been for most of the last 24 years.  Snowy Hydro 2.0 might not be such a good idea.

However, which generation had the biggest percentage increase in price from 2021 to 2022?  Gas?  Get ready for a surprise!

Figure 2:  Percentage Increase in Market Value per Megawatthour from 2021 to 2022

Blame the Russians or evil gas and coal exporters as much as you like- our saintly renewable generators had the largest increases.  Wind generated electricity increased the most- by a country mile.

They’re not above making a fast buck at the expense of Australian consumers.

(Source: OpenNEM)


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3 Responses to “The Surprising Cost of Electricity”

  1. John Atkins Says:

    Ken, Thanks for your efforts. Your Australian perspective is invaluable.

  2. Warwick Hughes Says:

    Ken maate – your email system is bouncing an email from me – Warwick Hughes –
    Here is what I tried to email you –
    [Many who have not followed monthly price trends in the NEM might find
    Kens chart misleading.
    Because monthly NEM prices peaked June July 2022 and were jawboned down by
    Labor after that.

    Thanks Chris for your comments re
    Australian climate cooling since 2012
    would be entirely marvellous to see your chart updated.

    and my ancient link to “Ken Stewart” worked normal as always.
    Best wishes to all – wazz]

    • kenskingdom Says:

      Sorry Wazza, I’ve been trying to set up a new page with a different username and password but wordpress doesn’t like it and gets confused, so that will have to stop.
      The charts are for annual prices for the whole of each calendar year. In absolute terms coal hydro and gas rose the most; as percentage increase hydro wind and solar increased the most. Because they could.

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