Sarah Irving

I do things with words, mainly English and Arabic

Electricity prices keep rocketing – or do they?

Interesting letter from yesterday’s Sydney Morning Herald. Fuel prices are as much a hot topic in Aus as in the UK, although I guess here a certain amount goes on keeping cool rather than warm (though from the weather over the last week you’d be forgiven for thinking Sydney was in fact located somewhere in Cumbria). But when people complain about rising prices, they’re probably not a) taking inflation into account, because bills are one of the few things which actually have a big clear number on them so numerical increases look more obvious than on, fr’instance, your weekly shop and b) probably aren’t grasping the fact that in the ‘good old days’ they perhaps didn’t have several tellies, a couple of PCs, a games console, hair straighteners, a DVD player and digital TV box which you can’t switch off… etc all chucking round the house sucking up power. Anyway:

Ronda Wakeley (April 26) says ”We are already paying much more for our electricity and petrol”. We aren’t. I have lived in the same house for 36 years, with much the same appliances, and I have kept a record of my bills over the years. Just looking at the past 10 years, my real cost, adjusted for inflation, has halved. It is a simple fact that electricity prices have risen by less than wages and inflation. Hence there has been an incentive to use more, not less.
Michael Harrington, Bonnet Bay

Just shows the value of those apparently odd people who keep decades’ worth of documents. Leccy bills as valuable historical (and environmental) resource…

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