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Australia: Energy Minister Refutes Policy 'Vacuum'
Source: https://www.9news.com.au
Source Date: Monday, September 09, 2019
Focus: Citizen Engagement
Country: Australia
Created: Sep 10, 2019

Federal Energy Minister Angus Taylor has hit back at his Queensland counterpart for suggesting there's a "complete vacuum" of policy from Canberra to reduce power bills. "If the Queensland Labor government was serious about lower power prices for Queenslanders, they could do it tomorrow," Mr Taylor told AAP on Monday. "(State energy minister) Anthony Lynham's energy meeting with unions and Queensland state-owned energy companies and producers is just rhetoric." His comments come after the Sunshine State's energy minister reportedly organised a local meeting for Thursday, to deal with issues such as rising costs. ''There's a complete vacuum at a federal level on energy policy," Dr Lynham told The Australian "If Angus Taylor isn't going to work on energy policy, including prices, then we'll do it in Queensland with our stakeholders."

Queensland's energy companies are run by the Labor state government, with prices set either by the competition authority or the market. Mr Taylor says he's in the midst of talks with industry on gas market reforms to reduce power prices and increase supply. "The Morrison government has developed a wide range of policies to lower prices and improve supply in the electricity market," he said. The federal minister has recently warned states to increase their gas supply if they want anything from the coalition. Meanwhile, the reliability of the electricity system during hot summer months remains a pressing issue, with the industry preparing to prevent blackouts. It will be a hot topic when the nation's energy ministers meet later this year.

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