GreenPower charges jump 41% for Clunes man

A CLUNES man who chose to offset all of the emissions used to produce his electricity will see his power bill rise by 41% just because he wanted to "do the right thing".

Russell Mills said when he was contacted by Origin Energy last year about the GreenPower option to voluntarily offset emissions on his electricity bill he was told it would cost "a bit more".

GreenPower is a voluntary government accredited program that enables an electricity provider to purchase renewable energy on a household's or business' behalf.

Four days before Christmas, Mr Mills said he got a letter from Origin Energy advising him: "Because there's been a rise in the market price of renewable energy, your GreenPower electricity charges are increasing from January 1, 2016."

He said the letter advised his GreenPower charges would increase from 3.971 cents per kWh to 5.61 cents per kWh.

"I called them and I said, 'is it right that my bills will go up 41%?', and they said, 'if you stay with 100% green energy, then yes'," he said.

"There are companies like Origin Energy who are encouraging their customers, which they did to me last year, to consider switching to green energy. They're not forcing them.

"Now customers who want to do the right thing are faced with an increase of 41% which is a lot; it's not as if its only 5% or 10%."

Origin Energy external affairs manager Ryan Auger said the increase in GreenPower charges for customers was due to the wholesale market price for Large Scale Generation Certificates rising from $40 to $75 over the past six months.

He said Origin Energy was passing on the increase in costs of the certificates to customers who chose the GreenPower option on their bill.

"Origin is Australia's largest provider of GreenPower products, offering a range of options for customers to make a voluntary contribution to emissions reduction," he said.

"We regularly review all our products and offers, to ensure they reflect the costs associated with making them available to customers.

"While GreenPower charges have changed due to an increase in the market price of renewable energy, Origin's GreenPower products remain competitively priced."

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