Carbon tax to cause spike in electricity and gas prices

Consumers will see electricity and gas prices jump by 7.9 per cent in 2012-13 according to the federal government.

Treasurer Wayne Swan released figures yesterday (September 18) which detail the government's predictions for individual cost increases for the average Australian.

Price impacts for 2012-13 are relatively small for most products and services - clothing will rise 0.2 per cent, along with milk at 0.4 per cent.

However, the only listed service which saw an increase above a single percentage point was electricity, gas and utilities.

Going by the government's predictions, this would see gas bills jump by $78 annually, with electricity bills to rise by $171.60.

Swan has encouraged Australians to become more energy conscious, saying: "Households that improve their energy efficiency - like turning off appliances at the wall or switching from incandescent to fluorescent light bulbs - can end up coming out in front.

"They can help the environment and their family budget at the same time."

Consumers who are struggling with the rise in their household bills could do well to consult a switching service, which can evaluate whether or not there are cheaper suppliers in your region.

Posted by Callum Fleming