The Editorial Line – Electricity Prices in NSW


Some great examples of journalism not allowing facts to get in the way of a good story or the editorial line in the past 24 hours, here’s one from ABC News Radio.
A story on this years NSW electricity hikes was led and ended stating categorically that they were being mostly caused by the dreaded Carbon Tax. This despite the interviewee in the piece repeating his organisations previous guidance that the Carbon Tax was contributing to only part of the increase.
The journalist narrowly focused her interest on the impact of the Carbon Tax on electricity prices, but the piece contained not a mention of the tax changes introduced to help offset potential price increases due to the Carbon Price. Perhaps the embarrassment of sticking so rigidly to talking points from the federal opposition was the reason the interview has not been published at the ABC News Radio site.
The representative from Energy Networks Australia went into great detail on infrastructure investment required of them in recent years to simply meet 40 hours per annum peak demand. The surprise the host showed when this was raised seems to indicate that she doesn’t live in NSW and is unaware there have been year on year increases of around 20% here over the past 5 years to fund that investment.
Which makes me speculate there will be a follow up on the reasons for the recent electricity price rises. One where the editorial team at ABC News Radio Drive will do some research into the nonsense of making electricity transmission infrastructure capable of managing 1 in every 150 day peak loads as if they occurred every day. Someone this week compared that effort to building all roads to be 12 lanes wide so that no one would have to drive at 3km for a few minutes in peak hour.
Assuming of course the ABC editorial line, which in June may require every discussion to include a Carbon Tax angle, allows for this before July 1 when the new electricity pricing comes into force. Conveniently in line with the introduction of Carbon Pricing.
It’s one thing, after all for commercial interests to tell half the story in order to attract listeners, viewers and readers. It’s a whole other when a non-commerical entity misinforms their listeners so as to toe the editorial line.

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