Rachel Antrobus lives in Bundaberg in Queensland and has to run her air conditioning 24-7 because her son has muscular dystrophy.
“If I don't keep it cool, he can get really sick," Rachel said.
She pays off her electricity every week but is falling behind.
“By the time he's 18, we will owe that much, probably going to have to mortgage the house just to pay for it," she said.
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Pensioner Victor Kodeyszko paid $1900 to install solar at his Sydney home. The 66-year-old is angry government subsidies have been cut and he's getting just eight cents a kilowatt-hour for surplus power being returned to the grid.
It costs three times as much for electricity from his provider.
“I think it's not fair," he said.
Paul Donnelly turned to solar to cut his bills. Instead, he's paying an extra $240.
“Shortly after we were locked into the grid, I received a bill from AGL saying that the price would increase because I had changed metres," Paul said.
But it's not just power prices skyrocketing.
AGL Energy Chief Executive, Michael Fraser's pay packet has almost doubled from $3.4 million to $6.3 million.
Clearly he isn't bothered by some of the highest energy costs in the world.
Behind Denmark and Germany, South Australia is ranked third; New South Wales comes fourth, followed by Victoria and Western Australia at sixth.
Tasmanians, Queenslanders, residents of the ACT and NT are all in the top 30.
It’s likely to get worse for thousands of consumers like Paul because with every solar panel connected, extra power is being fed back into the grid. This means power lines and substations have to be upgraded and on top of that, millions more are being spent increasing the network's generating capacity - which some argue is not necessary.
Brian Green, Chairman of Energy Users Association of Australia: “We are paying for equipment that is not needed. It's a case of forward projections, not meeting what’s actually happening."
Brian argues in just two years, we've pulled the plug on enough energy to power more than a million homes so expensive upgrades of networks are unnecessary.
“At the moment we have a very inflexible system. It is geared to continual load increases year-on-year but we're not going to see that for the foreseeable future," Brian said.
And for some the foreseeable future is bleak.
“People are going without meals and heating homes and heating water, those kinds of things," said Lifeline financial counsellor Mark Bates.
“Now people are turning everything off, everything down and the power bills are still going up, which is really frustrating people,"Mark said.
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