Report: Carbon tax costs energy generating companies $759m

THE Queensland auditor-general has found the carbon tax has cost the state's two energy generating companies $759 million in related expenditure and liabilities since its introduction last year.

The report into the Queensland energy sector, which was tabled in State Parliament today also revealed customer bills had risen more than 80% on average in the past five years.

In his report, auditor-general Andrew Greaves said the electricity industry faced a number of significant issues and challenges in moving forward.

"In forming our audit opinion we identified a number of issues that required careful consideration of their appropriate accounting treatment and presentation," he said.

"All entities achieved financial results, which indicate that they are sustainable in the short term.

"The longer term sustainability of generators depends critically on their ability to reduce future operating and capital costs and constrain their future debt levels.

"Sustainability of networks depends on their ability to anticipate and address forecast demand adequately, to adapt to revised forecasts and to align the delivery of planned expenditure programs to meet customer requirements within the regulatory framework."

Furthermore, the report concluded restructure in the current year prompted redundancy costs of $93.36 million across the sector with provisioning of $39.64 million recognised at for redundancies confirmed this year for employees who will leave after June 30.

The Queensland energy sector is made up of a number of state and privately owned generators, one state-owned transmitter, two state-owned distributors, one state-owned retailer and a number of privately owned retailers.

They operate as part of a regulated national energy market.

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