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Wholesale electricity prices have more doubled in just 12 months, dealing a new blow to Australian families already struggling with the crippling cost of living.

New data released by the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) shows in the latest quarter from January to March 31 wholesale electricity prices shot up by 141 per cent from the same time frame last year.

The AEMO also said electricity prices for the quarter are 67 per cent higher than the previous quarter, with prices averaging at $87 per megawatt hour.

Woman opening bill
Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) says wholesale electricity prices have more than doubled in a year. (Getty)

Households and businesses are starting to see the price increases reflected in their electricity bills.

And AEMO said they will continue to, forecasting energy companies will push up their power bills by eight per cent after the election, or $100 per bill.

Gas prices have also jumped from the previous year, with prices averaging $9.93 per gigajoule compared with $6.05 per gigajoule in the 2021 March quarter.

The AEMO indicated that renewable energy sources are continuing to expand in the market.

For 6.6 per cent of the time, AEMO said the net-zero cost of fuel for wind, solar and hydro were reached.

Power electricity bills powerlines energy
The AEMO forecasts that after the election energy companies will increase power bills by eight per cent. (iStock)

And the issue is being debated on the election trail by both sides.

The Labor Party is placing the blame on rising electricity prices on the Morrison government, with Australian Labor Party National President Wayne Swan, saying it’s the result of the “Coalition’s war against renewables”.

“Electricity prices are higher because cheaper renewables are not moving into the system as quickly as they should be doing so,” Mr Swan told Today.

“The Coalition has held that up. It’s another area where they’ve been missing in action and are living with the consequences of their inaction.”

But Defence Minister Peter Dutton said the cost of living would worsen under a Labor government.

“If you’re worrying about electricity prices, and petrol prices they will always be higher under Labor,” Mr Dutton said.

Source: 9News

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