daintree conspiracy
Daintree Conspiracy

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An online archive of historical facts and figures, documents, media articles, letters and stories
documenting the conspiracy against the Daintree Community, and events in the Douglas Shire..
Prepare to be amazed! Read about discrimination, hypocrisy, pollution, misfeasance and conspiracy!

Daintree Conspiracy on Youtube


The ARENA Powering Daintree Report - The AUSTROP response - The response to the AUSTROP response


Discrimination of the Daintree people

Discrimination is something that is considered unacceptable in our modern age, and both Federal and State Governments have comprehensive legislation to attempt to stamp out all sorts of discrimination by the public, while ironically enough the Government itself is allowed to discriminate as it pleases.
Example: if you own a nightclub you have to let everyone in, and at the same price, but if you are a government department such as immigration then you can treat Thais or Nigerians very different from English or Germans, you can make them wait longer and let them pay more, or refuse them entry all together.
As a government you can also treat Daintree people different; no subsidies for solar power, no equalised electricity tariff like the rest of Queensland, no basic infrastructure, restrict their access, etc.

The Daintree community has been discriminated against for decades by all levels of government, but they don't fit in to any box in the legislation which is only designed for discrimination on gender, race, age, and disability etc. so no formal complaints or legal action can be lodged.
Even the fact that 34 Aboriginal communities enjoy subsidized electricity through remote power stations and grids while the mainly white Australian Daintree community gets nothing is not considered a valid complaint by the Anti Discrimination Commission. Pensioners in the Daintree not getting the Queensland wide electricity rebate, no complaints accepted. Daintree residents not qualifying for solar panel rebates, no complaint accepted.

There are some places in Australia where people live without grid electricity but normally that is because they are just too remote.
The Daintree is not remote, power lines go around the Daintree further north to Cooktown and Hopevale.
The Daintree community is being discriminated against with a piece of legislation that has excluded the area from the Daintree river to the Bloomfield river from Ergon's Distribution Area.
The Electricity Act was amended in 2000 when the State Government declared an exclusion zone that runs from the Daintree river to the Bloomfield river and Power Committee members were infuriated when they found out that on the northside power lines had been illegally brought in across the Bloomfield river to supply indigenous housing in 2004.

Even National Parks was abandoning the Daintree, despite the Daintree National Park being a World Heritage listed tourism icon.
The toilets at the beautiful Marrdja Boardwalk after being burned down by vandals were never replaced.
The gas barbeques at Dubuji Boardwalk were removed and never replaced.
Rebuilding of Cape Tribulation Beach toilets took a long time.
But the sudden disappearance of the toilets at Cow Bay Beach at the start of the 2015 tourist season really got local residents fired up. A meeting was held with local council and national parks, with little result at first, but with persistence from the community they were rebuilt.
And then shortly after Cape Tribulation residents exploded when they found out that national parks was planning to demolish the 1200 metre loop of the Dubuji Boardwalk!
No public consultation was held with local residents, only with day tour operators, who found that their customers take too long to walk around the loop while they try to see the whole Daintree in a couple of hours, so a new boardwalk straight from the car park to the beach will be built.
Cape Tribulation residents, already frustrated with being denied services like power, water, broadband internet, garbage removal etc. were fed up with this final insult and vowed to blockade the boardwalk to stop demolition crews from taking the boardwalk away.

While the whole of Australia is being hooked up to the National Broadband Network, this network circles around the Daintree (just like the power cables) and goes up all the way to Cooktown, and even Hopevale got a fibre optic cable, while the Daintree has to make do with satellite internet that drops out when it rains or during heavy cloud cover, which is very common over rain forests of course..

And who is listening to us in government? After the January 2015 election we lost David Kempton as MP and ended up with Billy Gordon, who had not even been to the Daintree to campaign or meet with anyone, he proved to be utterly useless, came to the Daintree once and promised to do a Private Members Bill in Parliament to rescind the discriminatory Daintree Exclusion Zone but then backed out.
In 2017 it was election time again, Labor knows there is a high percentage of indigenous voters on the cape so they went looking for someone indigenous again to put on the election posters and found Cynthia Lui, who then of course won the election, because in indigenous communities people usually get told who to vote for. In her emotional maiden speech she told how she grew up in a place without water or electricity supply, well, in the Daintree kids are still doing that today in 2018...


It was interesting to note how various candidates for Douglas Shire Council before elections in 2013 told the Daintree residents that we had been treated as second class citizens for too long, and it was time to change that. We are still waiting to see talk turn in to action but a community forum was held in August 2014.
It was attended by about 40 out of 800 Daintree residents and considered a success by some, and a lip service ceremony by others.
Many Daintree residents are still wary and sceptic about this new council, and who can blame them if copies of the Corporate Plan are handed out to residents on arrival which state on Page 4 that:

The Corporate Plan was developed in close consultation with the community. This involved a number of community meetings and workshops throughout the Shire.

For the Daintree community this was the first meeting with council, so people are wondering how they could be given a Corporate Plan which is the result of community meetings, if it is already written and printed on arrival at the meeting...
It was also noted that Cape Tribulation was not on the Douglas Shire map in this document.

Cape Tribulation forgotten again...

Do the bank test. Walk in to a bank and tell them you want a mortgage to buy a property.
They will happily sit down with you and offer you a cup of tea or coffee. Drink it quick because as soon as you mention the property is north of the Daintree river their smiles will disappear and you will be told they don't deal with that area and kick you out of their office.

In the final years of Douglas Shire Council, a building moratorium was imposed on the Daintree, no building allowed for several years.
Nowhere else in Australia could such an economy destroying policy be imposed on the population.

A hoax media release did the rounds on 1 April 2014, which highlighted the fact how the Daintree community is always being treated different from all other Queenslanders.
Many people agreed with the points raised and believed the content as they thought there was nothing strange about an Equal Opportunities Commissioner ruling that Daintree people had not been treated equal and that actions should be taken to give them the same entitlements as all other Queenslanders.
Read the hoax media release to read it and see if it makes sense to you.


Below is a list, far from complete, that shows how Daintree residents are discriminated, forgotten, ignored, and neglected.
Note how in all these government publications the term "all Australians" means "all Australians except Daintree residents" and the term "all Queenslanders" means "all Queenslanders except Daintree residents".
The Daintree appears to be not a part of Queensland or Australia judging from many publications.

- All over Queensland people are raking in fat subsidies for solar power installations that they don't really need because they already have their power from the grid.
Daintree residents who have no grid power can not get solar subsidies!
They have to pay every single cent for all their expensive "renewable energy" equipment.

- The Daintree community was the only one in Queensland to have been denied the basic service of electricity by legislation, from 2000 until 2012 the Daintree Energy Policy prohibited any type of grid or sharing of electricity.

- The Daintree community is the only one to be excluded from Ergon's distribution area, while the rest of the state has equalized tariff electricity through grid or remote power stations.

- The Ergon Cost Estimate commissioned by the Queensland Government late 2013 told Daintree residents to pay for infrastructure themselves while the rest of Australia had it built from public money by their Government, and this also meant the Daintree would not have equalized tariff, minimum service standards, and guaranteed service levels like the rest of Queensland has.

- While the rest of Australia had infrastructure built by their government from public funds, the Daintree is THE ONLY community in Australia to have been told; if you want a grid sit down together and agree on what you want, find a private contractor to build it for you and pay for it yourself, and then be the only one in Queensland to not pay equalized tariff.

daintree black hole

The Queensland Government boast about the state’s electricity network lines being more than 205 000km long—enough to wrap around the earth five times.
But the 36 km. from the Daintree river to Cape Tribulation remains in the too hard basket.

Have a look at the map below; 34 remote communities in Queensland, mainly Cape York and Torres Strait, have remote power stations run by Ergon.

remote power stations in Queensland and the black hole of the Daintree


Have a look at the how media releases are only written for Queenslanders that live outside the Daintree, while the government boasts about their spending and commitments none of the below applies to the Daintree.
In all statements the term "Queenslanders" means "Queenslanders except for Daintree residents"

To keep the page managable media releases are shortened to the relevant sentences.

01/07/2012: The LNP’s cost of living commitments coming into effect today are:
Freezing the standard domestic electricity tariff (Tariff 11) saving families an average of $120 this year
(families means all Queensland families except families living in the Daintree, Daintree families don't have frozen electricity tariff, they keep on paying rising prices for their generator fuel)

25/09/2013: Media Release
Minister for Energy and Water Supply
The Honourable Mark McArdle

Minister tours Scenic Rim region

Minister Mark McArdle to the Mayor of the Scenic Rim Region: “Providing safe, reliable and affordable energy and water supply is vital to meeting the basic needs of communities and for the future development of Queensland.”
(If it is so vital to communities then why is the Daintree community excluded from Ergon's distribution area? Is it only vital for all other Queenslanders but not vital for the Daintree community?)

02/10/2013: Media Release
Minister for Energy and Water Supply
The Honourable Mark McArdle

Ergon ready for summer storm season

Ergon is preparing for cyclone season. Mr McArdle said the company has been working hard to maintain its vast network across regional Queensland in preparation for summer by inspecting, maintaining and replacing aged assets. “Ergon’s fleet of mobile generators has been boosted with six new generator sets on top of 13 added last year.”
(Plenty of money and resources available to keep inconvenience of power outage for all Queenslanders to a minimum, but what is done for Daintree residents? Absolutely nothing!)
The Daintree has been without essential services for years, but everywhere else in Queensland no money is spared to helicopter in generators to restore power within hours.

04/12/2013: Media Release
Minister for Energy and Water Supply
The Honourable Mark McArdle

Time running out to have your say on powering Queensland’s future

Minister for Energy Mark McArdle said the consultation period for the 30-year Electricity Strategy discussion paper would close this Friday. “This is the last opportunity for Queenslanders to put forward their ideas and share their vision in shaping the 30-year electricity strategy, to be released next year,” Mr McArdle said. “We’re encouraging Queenslanders to think outside the box. Regardless of how electricity is made, moved and consumed in the future, it is certain IT WILL REMAIN ESSENTIAL TO OUR WAY OF LIFE AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT.”
( I have had my say many times, but if you live in the Daintree then your opinion is not important.
If electricity is essential to the way of life of Queenslanders, why is it not for Daintree residents? Are they not Queenslanders? Do they not need economic development to surive?)

19.12.2013: Media Release
Minister for Energy and Water Supply
The Honourable Mark McArdle

Renewable Energy Target must be reviewed

Queensland Minister for Energy Mark McArdle has reinforced the need for the Renewable Energy Target to be revised, to take pressure off electricity prices for Queenslanders.

Mr McArdle said recent commentary alleging that the Renewable Energy Target places significant downward pressure on electricity prices is incorrect.

“In determining the cost of making, producing and supplying electricity, the Queensland Competition Authority has confirmed the effect that the Renewable Energy Target has on pushing up the cost of supply of electricity to households and businesses,” he said.

“In a subsequent letter to me the Queensland Competition Authority estimated that the cost of the Renewable Energy Target equated to $81.24 on an average household electricity bill.

“This clearly demonstrates the effect that the Renewable Energy Target has in putting upward pressure on electricity prices.

“We’ve been working hard to deliver better infrastructure as we promised at the election, to put downward pressure on prices.

“Revising the Renewable Energy Target and axing the carbon tax are two ways that electricity used could get immediate relief.”

Mr McArdle said that the Queensland Government supported renewable energy but it must be commercially cost effective.

“If it isn’t commercially cost effective we are simply adding to electricity prices by mandating a level of green energy that must be used, regardless of how expensive it is,” he said.

“I welcome the Federal Government’s impending review of the Renewable Energy Target because it will allow Queenslanders to have the conversation about whether Australians are prepared to pay for energy sources that are not economically viable through their electricity bills.

“The Newman Government is doing what it to keep downward pressure on power costs but this can must be looked at in order to put a stop to the escalating cost-of-living for Queenslanders.”

While the government has for many years boasted about the Daintree being Australia's largest renewable energy community it has now been officially declared that renewable energy is not commercially cost effective and it is not acceptable for Queenslanders to have a percentage of this energy included in their power bill. But while it is not acceptable for Queenslanders it is totally acceptable for Daintree residents to pay the price for 100% expensive renewable energy.

03/01/2014: Power was cut to the North Stradbroke Island when major bushfire damaged major high voltage power lines supplying electricity to the Island on Thursday. Minister for Energy Mark McArdle said 5,800 customers were without power for North Stradbroke and the nearby Islands following the fire. “More than 3,000 homes and businesses on Lamb, Macleay, Russell and Karragarra Islands had their power restored yesterday at 2pm while the balance of homes and businesses on North Stradbroke were restored at 12:30am this morning,” he said.
“The arrival of multiple generators overnight helped to connect a temporary electricity supply to the 2,200 homes and business on the island.
(Amazing how the Daintree has been waiting for an electricity supply for decades with no solution in sight, yet in other places in Queensland outside the Daintree generators can be flown in and power provided within a day!) Every year during natural disasters abundant news reports inform us of how many people have lost power to their homes, it never ceases to amaze me how people with no mains power for a few hours are always more newsworthy than people who have spent decades without mains power.

18/02/2014: Media Release
Minister for Energy and Water Supply
The Honourable Mark McArdle
McArdle welcomes RET Review

The Newman Government has enthusiastically welcomed the announcement today of a review of the Renewable Energy Target by the Federal Government.
Energy and Water Supply Minister Mark McArdle said the days of Queenslanders subsidising energy sources that were not commercially viable should be declared over by the expert panel.
“Unfortunately the RET is increasing Queenslanders electricity bills by $81.24 per year,” Mr McArdle said.
Mr McArdle said renewable energy was important, but the challenge was making it cheap enough to compete with traditional forms of electricity.
He said he also hoped the expert panel would take into account the recent experience during the heatwave in Victoria where the contribution of renewable energy during the peak usage periods was very unreliable.
“This calls into account the usefulness of subsidising renewable sources of energy when they cannot be relied on, for day to day peak periods or on those really hot days when the electricity network is being stretched,” he said.
Mr McArdle confirmed the Queensland Government would be making a submission to the RET Review.
The Energy Minister has now officially declared that renewable energy is NOT COMMERCIALLY VIABLE and Queenslanders should not be forced to pay for a percentage of this in their electricity bill.
Daintree residents who have no choice other than renewable energy.
Yet what is unacceptable to Queenslanders is totally acceptable for Daintree residents, according to the minister. Yet another confirmation that the Daintree is not a part of Queensland any more.

09/04/2014: Media Release
Minister for Energy and Water Supply
The Honourable Mark McArdle

Preparations essential for Tropical Cyclone Ita

Mr McArdle said the electricity grid ended at Hope Vale north of Cooktown, but Ergon also operated eight isolated generation-based networks on the Cape York Peninsula.
“Ergon has a number of options ready to go in terms of deployment of generators and mobile high voltage substations, known as Pegasus units.
“It also has extra generation on-call and at least four helicopters from aviation contractors on standby ready to assist if and when required.
(Unlimited funds and resources available for Cooktown and indigenous communities. meanwhile, what was being done for the Daintree? Nothing, Daintree residents were on their own as usual).

13/04/2014: Media Release
Minister for Energy and Water Supply
The Honourable Mark McArdle

Emergency crews working to get the power on

Mr McArdle said more than 13,000 customers across the Far North spent the night without power.
“People in both urban and rural areas can be assured that everything that can be done is being done, and I would appeal to people to be patient,” he said.
“Ergon now has more than 500 field staff on standby across affected districts and awaiting deployment from locations further south, including 180 specialist substation staff based in Townsville and Cairns.
More help is arriving for the residents of Cooktown, Hope Vale and Wujal Wujal who have been without electricity for two nights.
So people in rural areas of Queensland can be assured that everything that can be done is being done by 500 field staff.
Meanwhile what is being done for the Daintree? Absolutely nothing, other than a message that the Queensland Government has no money for the Daintree and they can build their own infrstracuture if they want it.

14/04/2014: Media Release
Minister for Energy and Water Supply
The Honourable Mark McArdle

Emergency crews powering on to win the 'Ita fight'

Ergon Energy crews are winning the battle to restore electricity to people in North and Far North Queensland, but the war with Tropical Cyclone Ita continues to be fought on several fronts.
Energy and Water Supply Minister Mark McArdle said the majority of people who had their power cut by the cyclone are now reconnected, but there is still plenty of work to do.
(Unlimited resources available to all north Queenslanders to get their electricity on ASAP, but what about the Daintree? They are still in the dark, but have been told to sit down together and build their own grid at their own expense, why can they not be treated the same as other Queenslanders?)

Meanwhile the Douglas Shire Council website reported that only about a hundred houses in the Shire were still without mains power. In the Daintree there are at least two hundred houses, so it appears that the Daintree was once again forgotten and not included.

16/04/2014: Media Release
Minister for Energy and Water Supply
The Honourable Mark McArdle

$2 billion in savings to reduce power prices

Queenslanders will experience cheaper electricity prices in the future after the Queensland Government announced common sense changes that will save electricity distributors $2 billion dollars.
Energy Minister Mark McArdle said the changes provided greater flexibility on future electricity infrastructure decisions, placing downward pressure on future electricity prices.
“These changes strike the right balance between protecting the needs of Queensland consumers and putting downward pressure on future electricity prices,” Mr McArdle said.
(Here we go again; "Queenslanders" means "all Queenslanders except for Daintree residents" as they will not see their electricity costs go down with rising fuel prices and govt unwilling to connect them like the rest of the state).

16/04/2014: Media Release
Minister for Energy and Water Supply
The Honourable Mark McArdle

Cyclone Ita 'ground zero' power heroes thanked

Mr McArdle said the state government recognised some people and businesses were doing it tough in the wake of Tropical Cyclone Ita and may have difficulty paying their electricity bills.
“Anyone experiencing problems should contact Ergon Energy,” he said.
Ergon Energy Chief Executive Ian McLeod said he understood some customers would have other priorities and there was a need to reduce the immediate pressure on family finances.
“We can arrange a payment plan to assist customers who have been impacted by Cyclone Ita to help them to manage their electricity account,” Mr McLeod said.
(Mc Ardle knows Daintree residents are doing it tough, he has been face to face with residents close to tears but no special treatment for Daintree residents who drive to the petrol station to fill their jerry cans, they will still have to pay now or no fuel to run the generator and sit in a dark house)

25/04/2014: Media Release
Minister for Energy and Water Supply
The Honourable Mark McArdle

New charter to power regional development

Real estate developers across regional Queensland will save time and money and find it easier to connect to the electricity grid under a new charter released by Ergon Energy. Launching the New Connections for Developers’ Charter at a forum of industry leaders in Townsville, Energy Minister Mark McArdle said the charter would provide greater consistency and minimise costs for future real estate subdivision projects.
The charter is a document that sets out Ergon Energy’s commitment to the industry with respect to capital works either designed and built by a developer or delivered by Ergon.
The charter primarily commits Ergon to adhere to agreed timeframes for each stage of the electricity connection process.
(So now all around Queensland people can get connected to Ergon's grid faster and easier while the Daintree remains the black hole without essential service).

01/05/2014: Media Release
Minister for Energy and Water Supply
The Honourable Mark McArdle

States’ representatives should axe Labor’s carbon tax

The Newman Government’s moves to stabilise Labor’s skyrocketing electricity price increases included:

- freezing the electricity Tariff 11 for 2012-13, which saved households an average $120 (No savings for Daintree households)
- providing a $620 million subsidy so regional customers pay the same price for electricity as people in Brisbane (Daintree households receive no subsidy and pay up to 15 times more for electricity than people in Brisbane or anywhere else in Qld)
- boosting the electricity rebate for pensioners to $282 this year (Pensioners in the Daintree receive no rebate)
- closing the 44c Feed-in Tariff Solar Bonus scheme to new customers, while also reforming the transitional 8c solar FiT in south east Queensland (nobody in the Daintree is able to feed in to the grid)
But electricity prices will keep sky rocketing for Daintree residents as the government is just about to increase the tax on fuel, and lower the rebate available for fuel used for electricity generation.

16/05/2014: Media Release
Minister for Energy and Water Supply
The Honourable Mark McArdle
Cable project powers Mackay CBD growth

Work is nearing completion on a project that will boost the security of the electricity supply to the Mackay CBD and lay the foundation for future commercial and residential growth in the area. Inspecting progress on Ergon Energy’s multi-million dollar underground cable project, Energy Minister Mark McArdle said the project delivered on the Newman Government’s election promise of better planning and infrastructure. “While Labor neglected the Mackay area, this vital project shows the Newman Government’s commitment to supporting the region,” Mr McArdle said.
“We are a Government with a strong plan for all of Queensland, as opposed to Labor which has no position on anything.”
The $5 million project involves the installation of a single circuit 2.7km long high voltage underground cable between the Hume Street bulk supply substation and the Alfred Street substation, one of two inner-city zone substations that feed the CBD.
Mr McArdle said work on installing the cable was expected to be completed by the end of next week and the overall project was expected to be in service by the end of next month.
“This is great news for the many business and commercial operators in the CBD area,” he said.
“The project will meet the current load and improve the security of supply in the busy CBD area.
“It will also cater for future residential and commercial development, particularly along the River Street area.”
Mr McArdle said there were currently $73 million worth of electricity infrastructure projects on the books in the Mackay, Whitsunday, and Moranbah areas.
“To put downward pressure on future electricity prices, Ergon Energy must make prudent infrastructure investment decisions while making sure it continues to deliver value for money services.”
So the Queensland Government has a strong plan for all of Queensland.....
Really? Strong plan? ALL of Queensland?
The Daintree must not be a part of Queensland then, because there is no strong plan there, the Daintree people have been abandoned by their government, they were told that if you want a grid you can build and pay for it yourself!

26 May 2014: Deputy Premier, Minister for State Development, Infrastructure and Planning
The Honourable Jeff Seeney

Napranum receives vital road upgrade

Napranum will be better connected to the rest of western Cape York through a road upgrade being funded by the Queensland Government’s $495 million Royalties for the Regions program.

Deputy Premier and Minister for State Development, Infrastructure and Planning Jeff Seeney said the $1.48 million project will widen and upgrade the almost two kilometre road linking Napranum township to the Peninsular Development Road and Weipa.

“The Queensland Government has a strong plan for regional Queensland’s future and we are building on Napranum’s strengths through the Royalties for the Regions program,” Mr Seeney said.

“We promised to deliver better infrastructure and better planning and the Royalties for the Regions program is providing just that to the Napranum community.

“In contrast, Labor ignored the regions and still has no plan to improve funding and provide the necessary infrastructure.

“The road upgrade will be jointly funded by the Napranum Aboriginal Shire Council contributing $77,000 and our government - $1.4 million through Round 3 of the Royalties for the Regions program.”

Mr Seeney said through Royalties for the Regions, more than 39 regional councils have received more than $250 million, delivering more than 235 kilometres of road upgrades, community infrastructure and flood mitigation projects.

“We have delivered more than $6 million for far north Queensland through Round 3 of Royalties for the Regions: $3.5 million to Cook Shire Council to revitalise its esplanade; $1 million to Carpentaria Shire Council for a new swimming pool complex; $440,000 to Tablelands Regional Council for a road upgrade and more than $1 million to Napranum,” he said.

Another example of how the Daintree is forgotten again.
$250 million spent on infrastructure elsewhere in Queensland but not a cent on the Daintree.
Note the above sentences; "The Queensland Government has a strong plan for regional Queensland’s future" and “In contrast, Labor ignored the regions and still has no plan to improve funding and provide the necessary infrastructure".
Daintree people would like to know what the strong plan for their area is, and if Labor had no plan to provide the necessary infrastructure then what plan does the LNP have?
Infrastructure Minister Jeff Seeney has forgotten what he has stated in the past, read here what he said in the past about the Coalition's commitment to electricity infrastructure in the Daintree.

30 May 2014: Minister for Environment and Heritage Protection
The Honourable Andrew Powell

Sustainable future recognised with awards

A lengthy media release including: “The Newman Government has a strong plan to help Queenslanders develop technologies that reduce environmental impacts, foster new business and jobs, and bring economic benefit and a brighter future to the community.

A strong plan for Queensland, but a strong plan for the Daintree? An electricity grid would mean reducing environmental impacts, new businesses and jobs through affordable electricity supply and economic benefits and brighter future for the community, but instead the Daintree community has been told to keep running their generators or pay for their own electricity grid if they want it. Hardly a strong plan, which makes you wonder if the Daintree is still a part of Queensland?

30 May 2014: Minister for Energy and Water Supply
The Honourable Mark McArdle

Carbon tax and Labor legacy biggest impact on power prices

A media release which includes: Mr McArdle said the Newman Government was pursuing the biggest-ever reform of the electricity sector aimed at stabilising electricity prices, which had skyrocketed over the last decade – causing more cost-of-living hardship for Queensland families and businesses.

Mr. McArdle claims to be very concerned about the cost-of-living hardship for Queensland families and businesses, but what about cost-of-living hardship for Daintree families and businesses whose electricity costs dwarf any costs paid by the rest of Queensland. They are forgotten again....

3 June 2014: Media Release
The Honourable Campbell Newman
Treasurer and Minister for Trade
The Honourable Tim Nicholls

A strong plan for a brighter future

The 2014-15 State Budget outlines the Queensland Government’s strong plan for a brighter future.

“Strong choices have to be made so that Queensland can have a brighter future,” Mr Nicholls said.

“We have continued to grow our four pillar economy, revitalise frontline services and fund job creating infrastructure projects,” Mr Newman said.

“Today’s budget delivers a plan to pay down some of that debt and fund infrastructure across Queensland.

“Now is the time for decisive action and new investment to build a brighter future for Queensland.”

A brighter future for Queensland, but what about the Daintree?
The media release goes on about funding infrastructure projects across Queensland, while the Daintree community has been told to fund its own infrastructure!

3 June 2014: Media Release
Treasurer and Minister for Trade
The Honourable Tim Nicholls

Strong Plan delivers brighter future for Cairns and FNQ

The 2014-15 State Budget continues to deliver a strong plan for a brighter future for all of Queensland, including the Cairns region.

“We are also making the strongest and smartest choice to secure our finances so we can reduce debt and reinvest funds into the schools, hospitals and infrastructure that we know our regions are going to need.

“This year’s budget includes a capital spend of almost $500 million in the Cairns region alone.

Mr Nicholls said the Queensland Government was investing in the economic development of the Cairns region.

Mr Nicholls said the budget was another step forward in the Government’s positive plan for the state.

“We are making significant progress in restoring our finances, growing a four pillar economy, revitalising frontline services and funding infrastructure projects,” he said.

“But to sustain this we must reduce debt so we can truly keep building on our strong plan for a brighter future.”

Lots of impressive talk again; brighter future for all of Queensland, including the Cairns region.
That must mean the Cairns region except for the Daintree, because this community has been told to fund its own infrastructure while the region around them qualifies for $500 million in funding.
The treasurer talks about investing funds in infrastructure that we know the regions are going to need, but the Daintree community has been told to fund its own infrastructure.
The brighter future for Queensland that he talks about is nowhere in sight for the Daintree.

3 June 2014: Media Release
Treasurer and Minister for Trade
The Honourable Tim Nicholls
Minister for Energy and Water Supply
The Honourable Mark McArdle

Bright future for safe and reliable energy and water supply

The Queensland Government’s commitment to providing safe, reliable energy and water for all Queenslanders has received a further boost in the 2014-15 State Budget.

“This budget outlines our plan for secure finances by making the strongest and smartest choice to reduce debt, it’s a strong plan for a bright future,” Mr Nicholls said.

“We are making significant progress in restoring our finances, growing a four pillar economy through a robust and streamlined regulatory environment, revitalising frontline services and funding job creating infrastructure projects.”

Energy and Water Supply Minister Mark McArdle said rural and regional Queenslanders would continue to be supported by $683 million in subsidies which ensured they paid the same electricity price as people living in Brisbane, despite significantly higher supply costs to more remote areas.

Mr McArdle said the 2014-15 Budget delivered the certainty required for his department to refocus and modernise in line with upcoming 30-year electricity and water plans that would chart the way for affordable and sustainable energy and water provisions for Queensland into the future.

Bright future for safe and reliable energy and water supply?
The Daintree community struggles with a very unsafe and unreliable energy supply, with no assistance from their government on the horizon to provide them a bright future.
Their future looks bleak, not bright, any rise in fuel prices will tip more businesses over the edge and create more energy poverty for struggling residents.
And water supply? The only water supply they have is the annual 4.5 metres of rainfall making their solar panels useless.
$683 million in subsidies for regional Queenslanders? Not for the Daintree residents, they don't get a cent, most of this goes to indigenous communities that all have remote power stations and mini grids which people in the Daintree are denied.
Affordable and sustainable energy and water provisions for Queensland into the future?
Yes, for Queensland except the Daintree, they are on their own, left to fend for themselves, despite statements from politicians such as Jeff Seeney, Queensland's current Infrastructure Minister, back in 2000 he stated:

"The Coalition will be continuing to develop proposals to extend the electricity supply that already exists north of the Daintree river in a manner that recognises the environmental sensitivity of the area but also meets the fundamental rights of people already living there to basic infrastructure."

The people of the Daintree area can be assured that the Coalition in Government will not abandon our responsibility to them to provide basic infrastructure and nor will we abandon our responsibility to protect the environmental values of the arrea which are the very reason they chose to live there" Mr Seeney said. Read his statement here.

18 June 2014: “The Queensland Government has a strong plan for a brighter and safer future for every resident across the state, including the elderly or disabled,” Minister Dempsey said.

Brighter future for every resident across the State? Daintree residents appear not be residents of the State of Queensland then, because their future is looking increasingly bleak having to run generators with rising fuel prices, and the elderly and disabled in the Daintree do not qualify for rebates on electricity bills like in the rest of the state, and especially those reliant on medical equipment such as breathing apparatus suffer even more., choking when the fuel runs out, or paying a fortune to keep the generator on 24 hous a day.

20 June 2014: Media Release
Minister for Energy and Water Supply
The Honourable Mark McArdle

PowerQ: a strong plan to power Queensland

Queensland families will have future electricity prices stabilised and cost of living pressures eased as a result of the Newman Government’s strong 30 year plan for the electricity sector.

Launching PowerQ: a 30-year strategy for Queensland’s electricity sector today Energy Minister Mark McArdle said it would deliver a more cost-effective, consumer focussed, resilient and better planned electricity supply system.

“The cost of electricity is a burden on families, made tougher by Labor’s inept management over two decades,” Mr McArdle said.

“The Queensland Government has a strong 30 year plan that will create a brighter future for families across the state.

PowerQ is available at www.dews.qld.gov.au

Great news for Queensland families who will have their electricity prices stabilized but Daintree familes will continue to buy diesel at ever inflating prices.
The Energy Minister talks of a better planned electricity supply system, does that mean he he has finally decided to put the Daintree on the grid like the rest of Australia?
And the strong plan that the Queensland Government has for families across the state, does that mean families in the Daintre too? Will their future become brighter?

23 June 2014: Media Release
Minister for Energy and Water Supply
The Honourable Mark McArdle

Strong support to continue for energy and water customers

Queensland’s Energy and Water Ombudsman has been reappointed for another three years.
“Under Mr Smith’s leadership, more than 14,000 complaint cases in relation to electricity, gas and water services were resolved in the 2012-13 period.
“I am also pleased to announce we have increased funding for the Ombudsman in the 2014-15 state budget which means great protection for all Queenslanders.”
Mr McArdle said the reappointment of Mr Smith provides continuity for the Ombudsman as the Government introduces the National Energy Customer Framework from 1 July 2015.
“This framework will deliver stronger protections and support for vulnerable electricity and gas customers,” he said.
“Its introduction delivers on our commitment to restore accountability in government, while putting downward pressure on electricity prices for Queensland families.
“Only the Newman Government has a strong plan to stabilise electricity prices, while ensuring consumers are properly protected.”
Customers can contact the Energy and Water Ombudsman Queensland by phoning 1800 662 837 or visiting www.ewoq.com.au

Great news for Queenslanders, but what about Daintree residents?
McArdle says the increased funding for the Ombudsman in the 2014-15 state budget means great protection for all Queenslanders, further proof the Daintree is no longer a part of Queensland as this Ombudsman works for all Queenslanders except Daintree residents.
More talk of lower electricity prices for Queensland families, but nothing for Daintree families.

24 June 2014: Media Release
Minister for Energy and Water Supply
The Honourable Mark McArdle

WaterQ: a strong plan for Queensland’s water future

Queensland families will have safer, more secure and more affordable water with the launch of WaterQ: a 30-year strategy for Queensland’s water sector.
While Queensland families will have safer affordable water, Daintree residents will not, they rely on rain and creek water, and if this runs out in a long dry season then you are on our own, lug around with jerry cans and dig a pit in the garden for a toilet.

26 June 2014: Media Release
Minister for Energy and Water Supply
The Honourable Mark McArdle

PUP’s (Palmer United Party) plan to keep RET costs Queenslanders
LNP plan to keep Daintree community excluded from Ergon costs Daintree residents

Queensland families could be better off if Clive Palmer had a consistent approach to saving consumers money on their electricity bills.
Daintree families could be better off if the Queensland government had a consistent approach to saving consumers money on their electricity bills, while proudly announcing the repeal of the Daintree Energy Policy that prohibited grids, they insist on maintaining the discriminatory exclusion from Ergon’s distribution area, denying Daintree residents the affordable reliable energy that the rest of Queensland outside the Daintree has.

Energy Minister Mark McArdle said the Palmer United Party was putting upward pressure on electricity prices by its decision to retain the Renewable Energy Target.
Daintree residents say the LNP keeps putting upward pressure on their electricity prices by its decision to retain the exclusion of Ergon from the Daintree.

“It’s pleasing to see Clive Palmer finally decide to support the Federal Government and abolish the Carbon Tax, but keeping the Renewable Energy Target shows he doesn’t care about Queensland families,” Mr McArdle said.
“It’s pleasing to see Clive Palmer finally decide to support the Federal Government and abolish the Carbon Tax, but keeping the Daintree excluded from Ergon shows the LNP doesn’t care about Daintree families,” Daintree residents say.

“The PUP owner produces plenty of hot air about the cost of living, but his pledge to block any changes to the Renewable Energy Target will continue to cost families money.
“The LNP produces plenty of hot air about the cost of living, but their pledge to block any changes to the exclusion from Ergon will continue to cost Daintree families money.

“The independent Queensland Competition Authority (QCA) has calculated that in 2013 the RET cost Queensland residential consumers $168 million.
“Energy costs in the Daintree attempting to use renewable energy but running diesel generators most the year cost Daintree residents millions per year and keeps the community struggling while businesses hit the wall.

“That’s $83 dollars a year that Queensland families would be better off if the RET was removed.
“That’s $3000 to $50 000 dollars a year that Daintree families would be better off if the exclusion from ERGON was removed, and the same essential service provided as the rest of Queensland has.

“The QCA also found the Target cost Queensland business customers $304 million in 2013.
The cost per business for energy is still peanuts compared to the energy costs of Daintree businesses.

“Queensland PUP Leader Alex Douglas’ says his party ‘resolutely pursues a better deal for Queenslanders’, but that clearly isn’t the case.”
“Queensland LNP Leader Campbell Newman says his party ‘has a strong plan for all Queenslanders’, but that clearly isn’t the case, it is only for Queenslanders but not for the Daintree residents.”

“If Mr Douglas really cared about families he would call Clive Palmer and demand that he stop costing them more money.”
“If Mr Newman really cared about Daintree families he would call Mark McArdle and demand that he stop costing Daintree residents more money by removing the discriminatory exclusion of the Daintree from Ergon’s distribution area and treat Daintree families the same as Queensland families.”

Media Release
Minister for Energy and Water Supply
The Honourable Mark McArdle
Minister for Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services
The Honourable Tracy Davis

Energy rebates for pensioners and vulnerable Queenslanders

Vulnerable Queensland families and pensioners will receive welcome help to deal with cost of living pressures from today, with the Queensland Government delivering on a key election promise.
Queensland families and pensioners to receive help, Daintree families and pensioners are on their own.

“The Queensland Government promised to lower the cost of living wherever we could and we’re making sure that pensioners and other vulnerable Queenslanders get some relief on household costs,” Mr McArdle said.
The Minister is aware that the cost of living is high in the Daintree where everyone needs to run their own generator for electricity, but not a cent for Daintree residents, only for people on the grid.

Queensland pensioners and seniors will be able to apply for an electricity rebate of $320.97 a year - an increase of $38.43. (Only those in Queensland qualify for this, not in the Daintree).

Ms Davis said the Queensland Government had also boosted concessions for Queenslanders living with serious medical conditions. The Medical Cooling and Heating Electricity Concession Scheme will increase by $38.43 to $320.97, while the Electricity Life Support Concession Scheme will rise as high as $653.70 per year for oxygen concentrators and $437.77 per year for kidney dialysis.
Daintree residents can pay for all costs of their fuel and generator to keep their machines going.

Media Release
Treasurer and Minister for Trade The Honourable Tim Nicholls
Minister for Energy and Water Supply The Honourable Mark McArdle

Queenslanders (except for Daintree residents) can calculate their electricity savings

Every Queensland household (except for Daintree households) can now calculate how much they would save on their electricity bills under the Queensland Government’s $3.4 billion Strong Choices Electricity Price Relief plan.

Treasurer Tim Nicholls said a simple online calculating tool was now available for Queenslanders to fill in electricity bill information and determine their savings.

“The LNP came to office determined to ease cost of living pressures for Queenslanders and yesterday we announced our Strong Choices Electricity Price Relief plan, which would see the Government permanently remove the cost of the Solar Bonus Scheme from electricity prices,” Mr Nicholls said.
Determined to ease cost of living for Queenslanders, but what about easing cost of living for Daintree residents?

“While we know the typical Queensland household will save $577 on their power bills over the next five years, this online calculator will give a much more individualised determination for families, based either on their latest bill, or an estimation of how much electricity their household uses.

To check your own electricity bill and work out what your own future savings could be, go to www.strongchoices.qld.gov.au

[ENDS] 13 October 2014

Media contact: Anna Hilton 0408 191 192

I have been to this online calculator and based on my electricity consumption I should save $98 over five years. Not much, but how would it work? Is generator fuel going to be cheaper? Are they sending out a mechanic to tune up my generator for extra efficiency?
Or is this the familiar scenario where the Daintree is not included in Queensland, and Daintree households not included in all Queensland households?

More recent media releases showing how the Queensland Government discriminates the Daintree:

14 January: Queensland solar projects jump one step closer to construction

Just after we received the flat our rejection to our energy proposal for the Daintree the Qld govt released the above media release on how committted to renewable energy they are, solar farms going in across the state, but nothing in the Daintree of course.

18 February 2016: Renewable energy investment and job boom looms for Queensland

In this media release they boast about $2.5 billion in renewable energy projects that have been proposed across regional Queensland in response to the Palaszczuk Government’s energy policies.
And what about the Daintree? They have just received a letter in reply to their proposal (after nearly three months waiting) saying don't talk to us, go and see Ergon.
In the closing sentence of this media release Energy Minister Mark Bailey said the construction and operation of large-scale renewable energy projects would encourage local and international investment, create jobs and help combat climate change by lowering carbon emissions.
Well, how about creating some jobs in the Daintree and lowering carbon emissions there? Hundreds of diesel generators burn up three million liters a year for a community of only 800 people.

Another hypocritical media release on 18 February 2016: $70 million infrastructure funding brought forward

Although there never is any money for the Daintree, now there is $70 million for eligible infrastructure projects that will benefit their communities through real jobs and long term economic opportunities. It further mentions: “Regional communities are the backbone of our economy and bringing this funding round forward will give regional areas a boost where it is most needed.”

An electricity grid in the Daintree will create jobs and long term economic opportunities, and the Daintree needs a boost more than any other area.


3 March 2016: Historic mine revives as green energy project

Not long after the QLd Govt had brushed off a renewable energy proposal for the Daintree they boasted about this project, why was the Daintree proposal flatly rejected and this one give the go ahead costing three hundred hundred million dollars?


19 March 2016: Desalination plant to assure Palm Island’s water supply
We are all aware of how the government supplies the indigenous population with electricity no matter how remote they live but the same thing applies to water.

The first time I met the Energy Minister Mark McArdle he had just been up to Wujal Wujal where they might have an issue next year with water pumps getting old. I felt like pointing out to him that the Daintree community has no water supply at all so maybe he should have been coming here first.
In the media release above you can see how the govt spends over seven million dollars just to avoid the risk of the island running out of water during this year's dry season. And what will the Daintree community do if it is a dry year? Is the government concerned about them? What will they do when the creeks run dry?


17 April 2016: Media release from the Queensland Premier:

She has just sent us a letter telling us the Daintree will NEVER be hooked up to ERGON's network because we are not profitable but now she announces $4.8 bllion in regional infrastructure funding and, would you believe it, she says:

"Queenslanders, no matter where they live deserve a fair go and their fair share. That's exactly what my Government is delivering.  That's why I have a Treasurer from far north Queensland and Ministers from Townsville, Rockhampton and Bundaberg,” the Premier said. 

If all Queenslanders deserve a fair go and a fair share, but the Daintree community is told they will have to run their generators for ever, then that can only mean the Daintree is NOT a part of Queensland any more.



March 2016: This is what it said on (now ex) Energy Minister Mark Bailey's website:



Click statement above to read larger version

The above is a little out of date now as Mark Bailey has already gone again, we have lost count of how many energy ministers have come and gone since the Daintree power issue started









Since coming to power the Coaltion has produced a White Paper on Northern Australia to develop the north and set aside no less than $210 million in funding for this, later to be upped to $5 billion, although I was at the NAP breakfast in the Cairns Hilton and remember Tony mentioning $7 billion.

I scoured the White Paper for anything relating to the Daintree, while the name Daintree was not mentioned anywhere I found some paragraphs that appear to apply to the Daintree;

Well spoken, people do feel very neglected in the Daintree.

Wealth and livelyhoods of ALL Australians? Daintree residents too? They don't know what wealth is, and their livelyhoods are struggling and threatened by their sky high electricity costs.

If Daintree businesses are to compete on a level playing field they will need similar electricity supply and prices as other businesses in the state, right now they pay up to 15 times more for electricity than the rest of Queensland..

One inappropriate policy, the Daintree Energy Policy has been repealed, but the discriminatory exclusion of the Daintree from Ergon's distribution area is the next one that has to be dealt with.

Well spoken, but so far government at all levels has been undermining wealth and living standards in the Daintree, resulting in struggling communities living in energy poverty.

Countless organisations including the UN have identified the lack of affordable electricity supply as a major impediment to carrying on economic activity.

Correct, but when are words going to turn in to action?

northern australia policy
Daintree Power Committee and David Kempton at the Hilton to hear how
there is $7 billion for north Australia EXCEPT THE DAINTREE

UPDATE MARCH 2016: Well, what a fizzer the NAP was. Senator Ian Macdonald invited us to the breakfast at the Cairns Hilton where we rocked up all excited that there was billions available for much needed infrastructure in northern Australia, After listening to lots of woffling by Tony and his colleagues how there was $7 billion for northern Australia's infrastructure we drove home to our third world country north of the Daintree river and after scanning the entire Northern Australia Policy document I found the name Daintree only once, and it was in a paragraph where it said; tourists should not only go to the reef and the Daintree, but also to Kakadu and the Kimberleys, so once again; no cash for the Daintree but there is a plan to divert tourists (that bring income to pay for our fuel bills) away from the Daintree!


National Energy Customer Framework

The Standing Council on Energy Reform (SCER) of the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) has developed the National Energy Customer Framework, and on their website you can read:

Yes, an essential service for ALL Australians, would that include Daintree residents? I have contacted them and will post the reply here on this page. So far nothing received.

This is what COAG says on their website:

This sounds like great news for the Daintree; the solving of the Daintree electricity crisis needs a) sustained, collaborative effort and b) the State and Commonwealth Government to own up to their responsibility and provide funding to provide essential services to hard working tax paying Australians.


More terms of reference that apply to the Daintree; households running petrol generators is a safety issue, environmental sustainability is non-existent in the Daintree with every household and business running their own generator, and energy affordability is a major issue which has created a community living in energy poverty paying up to $5.- per kwh.


The Daintree is a complex cross-cutting issue of environmental conservation, pollution, energy poverty, discrimination, and a total lack of infrastructure,
It would be good to see this Council take action, as the state government is unwilling to take action on it.

PowerQ, Qld's 30 year electricity plan

20 June 2014: the new strategy for Queensland's electricity:

queensland power strategy

You can find this document online by clicking here.

On their Facebook page they say: Our vision is to have an electricity supply system that is resilient, cost-effective and consumer-focused to support the economic and lifestyle aspirations of all Queenslanders.
All Queenslanders? Daintree residents too?They have NO electricity supply system, other than diesel generators, and their aspirations are ignored by their government.

Let's examine some of the content:

Page 1: While Queensland was well served by electricity supply infrastructure built by previous generations, in 2004 it was so run-down our state experienced an electricity supply crisis.
Queensland was well served but the Daintree had and still has no infrastructure.
And it is claimed the state suffered an electricity supply crisis. Crisis? Talk to the bankrupted Daintree business owners what an electricity supply crisis is....

Page 6: Queensland is fortunate to have secure and reliable electricity infrastructure.
Yes, Queensland might be fortunate, but the Daintree is not so fortunate, no secure and reliable infrastructure there, none at all actually.

Correct, that is why there is no wealth in the Daintree, people either struggle or go bankrupt.

Page 8: "Queensland should embrace the opportunities and economic benefits of renewable energy in rural and off-grid locations." Statement from the Clean Energy Council.
This is in sharp contrast to the Energy Minister Mark McArdle's statement that renewable energy is not commercially viable, and Queenslanders should not be made to pay for a percentage of this energy in their power bill. Read it here.

Page 10: Independent regional grids serve the Mt Isa region, while 34 small communities in remote
areas have isolated generators and localised distribution networks.
If all these networks can be built and maintained for Queenslanders why can the same not be done for Daintree residents?

Page 11: The power lines that make up the state’s electricity network are more than 205 000km long—enough to wrap around the earth five times.
It is only 36 km. from the Daintree river to Cape Tribulation, yet year after year and study after study no government has been able or willing to organize electricity here and give this community the essential service that every other Australian community, and most communities around the world, consider a basic service.

Price rises are a concern for all consumers: residential, commercial and industrial alike.
Whether the cost of electricity affected the household budget or the profitability of a business, consumers wanted the 30-year strategy to look into ways to make electricity affordable and prices more stable. "We cannot afford higher prices." say South East Queensland residents.
Queenslanders reckon they are doing it tough when prices have risen to 30 cents per kWh, Daintree residents and businesses pay up to $5.- per kWh, to generate their own power, with no assistance from anyone.

Queensland has a high rate of residential consumer disconnection as a result of unpaid bills. The number of participants in electricity retailer hardship programs in Queensland has increased by more than 33 per cent from September 2010 to June 2013.
The rising cost of electricity also places additional strain on commercial and industrial consumers. This limits their opportunity to expand into new markets. Commercial and industrial use accounts for around 80 per cent of total electricity use in Queensland. These businesses must have access to competitively priced electricity to grow Queensland’s economy.
Queenslanders have hardship programs to fall back on if they can't afford to pay their bill based on 30 cents per kWh. Daintree residents whose kWh price is many times higher have nothing to fall back on, they are on their own, can't afford to buy fuel, a new generator or battery bank or inverter? Then you can close your business or sit in your house by candle light with no fridge,
Additional strain on commercial consumers? Yes, in the Daintree many businesses have gone bust and you can buy entire resorts on huge acreages for the price of a bed sitter in Sydney.
Same as Queensland businesses must have access to competitively prices electricity to grow Queensland's economy, Daintree businesses need competitively priced electricity to grow the Daintree economy, which is currently not happening.

The electricity sector plays an important role in delivering infrastructure that supports
economic development by:
• continuing to provide high quality electricity services that are essential for economic activity
• ensuring those services are competitively and efficiently priced.
There is no infrastructure to suppport economic development delivered in the Daintree. The only thing delivered in the Daintree is three million litres of diesel per year to go up in smoke in hundreds of polluting and inefficient generators.
And there are no high quality, efficiently priced, electricity services being provided in the Daintree for economic activity, as there are in Queensland.

Page 19: Through PowerQ, we are creating a policy and regulatory framework that is ready to
respond to the changes that lie ahead and will benefit everyone.
Everyone? Only Queenslanders, or also Daintree residents?
Will battery technology mean consumers can go off-grid?
NO! Not for a long time! Batteries are expensive, and have a limited life span.
In the Daintree which is kept off-grid by a stubborn government there are piles of discarded worn out lead-acid batteries everywhere, it this little community creates so much waste can you imagine the whole of Queensland doing this? Over two million households would create a mountain of batteries the size of the Himalayas, an environmental disaster beyond belief, all this future day dreaming is totally unrealistic.

the reality of renewable energy
This is only a fraction of the batteries discarded by the off-grid Daintree community,
can you imagine two million Queensland households doing the same?

Page 22: We have made significant progress in implementing these reforms to deliver the following outcomes: helping vulnerable consumers to better manage future price increases through an
agreed concessions and hardships framework.
Hardships? Nobody knows hardships better than the Daintree residents, but this framework is only for Queenslanders.
Deliver safe, reliable services that achieve high levels of consumer satisfaction.
Great for Queenslanders, but Daintree residents do not have safe relieable services and are not satisfied at all.

As electricity sector reforms in Queensland begin to take effect, consumers will start saving money.
Queenslanders will start saving money, but what about Daintree residents? Will they finally get the grid like the rest of the state, or will the government start supporting them in other ways?
Prices will stabilise as reforms take effect and electricity sector productivity is improved. This will deliver lifestyle benefits to Queenslanders and contribute to strong economic growth.
What will be delivered to Daintree residents, will they see lifestyle benefits and economic growth like Queenslanders are promised?
Queensland will have the most competitive electricity prices in Australia.
Currently the Daintree has the highest electricity prices in Australia, will they get the most competitive prices in Australia like Queenslanders wil have? Or will they continue to run diesel generators like in Third World countries as they are currently forced to do by their government?

Page 25: MARK, 35
Mark is a dad and shares responsibility for the household budget. He’s been concerned with the rising cost of electricity these past few years and wants to see electricity become more affordable and his bills more predictable.
The example of Mark, who is a Queenslander, differs from the reality of a Mark who lives in the Daintree. This Mark would have been paying several dollars per kWh for years, instead of 20 to 30 cents, and his bills would not be predictable.
In a really sunny dry season month he might be paying only a couple of hundred of dollars in fuel for his generator to run when he needs big appliances, but during the rest of the year it would be a lot more. And at any time something can go wrong, the generator, inverter or battery charger can blow up, or the battery bank can be ready for replacement, and then the monthly power bill can be anywhere from $4000 to $10 000.-
Sorry kids, no holidays this year.

Page 27: Low cost solution for isolated communities

For Daintree residents this is probably the most exciting part of the entire document, but will this mean only indigenous communities, or does this apply to the Daintree too?

Page 35: The Queensland Government is considering options to improve the structure of regional subsidy arrangements. This is being conducted in parallel with reforms to Ergon Energy’s retail business. It addresses the ways subsidies are paid to enable new retailers to offer competitive deals to consumers. However, this work does not alter the state government’s commitment
to support regional consumers by subsidising electricity prices.
The Government will change, but continue to subsidize electricity prices for regional Queenslanders, but NOT for the Daintree region, they will keep paying the full cost of their generators, fuel and other equipment.

Page 36: Assess Queensland’s ability to contribute to emissions reductions.
Daintree residents have told their government countless times that replacing the hundreds of generators with a grid in the Daintree like the rest of Queensland has will reduce emissions, but so far to no avail.

Page 48: STRATEGY 8
Enable equitable access to electricity.
8.1 Review the hardship and concession framework.
This sounds like good news for Daintree residents! Enable equitable access to electricity, just like Queenslanders enjoy!
The definition of "equitable" is described as: fair and impartial, valid in equity as distinct from law.
"the difference between legal and equitable rights", just and right; fair; reasonable: equitable treatment of all citizens. So far the denial of electricity to the Daintree residents can only be described as unfair, unjust, unreasonable, and inequitable! A major change is much needed!
And if Daintree residents were included in a review of the hardship framework that would be fantastic too, nobody in Australia knows more of the reality of hardship through electricity costs than Daintree residents!

Page 49: In the short term, these actions will focus on existing hardship and concession measures such as the Electricity Rebate. The review of the framework will include investigating whether there are ways to improve the eligibility criteria or the structure of existing assistance measures.
They say they should improve elegibiliy criteria for the hardship policies, if the Daintree is still part of Queensland, and Daintree residents are still Queenslanders, they should qualify for rebates and hardship policies and should not be paying up to twelve times more for electricity than other Australians!


PEOPLE ‘We support the least advantaged’
Warren Entsch has called the Daintree "the most disadvantaged community in Australia".
If the Queensland government is serious about supporting the least advantaged then the Daintree is the place to start. No electricity, no water supply, no sewerage, no garbage collection, an old fashioned cable ferry with high fees as the only access, can it get any less advantaged?

COMMUNITY ‘In Queensland, nobody gets left behind’
Once again, it appears that the Daintree is not part of Queensland, because the Daintree community has been left behind.

REGIONS ‘Regions are strong and prosperous’
Queensland regions might be strong and prosperous, but the Daintree region has been struggling for years without essential services, many businesses have gone bankrupt and residents live in energy poverty.

ECONOMY ‘We are the number one performing economy in Australia’
Queensland might have a strong economy, the Daintree does not, denial of electricity severely limits economic activity that can be carried out, a situation defined as Energy Poverty by United Nations.

INFRASTRUCTURE ‘Our infrastructure fits our changing population and demographics’
This statement might apply to Queensland but not to the Daintree.
The population of the Daintree has changed over the last 40 years, from a majority dope-smoking hippies in the 70's to a normal population of families, small businesses and elderly people.
Like any normal community around the world they need electricity for lighting, refrigeration and economic activities to earn a living.
Minister Mark McArdle has stated: “Providing safe, reliable and affordable energy and water supply is vital to meeting the basic needs of communities and for the future development of Queensland.”
(If it is so vital to communities then why is the Daintree community excluded from Ergon's distribution area? Is it only vital for all other Queenslanders but not vital for the Daintree community?)

GOVERNANCE ‘Government is more effective and efficient’
Really? We have not noticed yet in the Daintree.

Page 53: Does this mean that Daintree residents, who have so far been left behind and abandoned by their government, will have to wait 30 years for the essential service of electricity?

queensland in 30 years



The Daintree community's only practical access to the outside world is a cable ferry across the Daintree river, resident ratepayers have to buy cards and tickets to get across the ferry each year, and tourists are charged $27 per car return fare.
The council has maintained this traffic limiter for years and rakes in a tidy profit at the expense of the Daintree economy, which sees a reduction in customers as a percentage of tourists will decide not to pay this high fee for a short crossing.
Council has been approached by businesss, Tourism Daintree Coast, Alliance for Sustainable Tourism, Daintree Marketing Cooperative and all have been ignored and the price keeps rising.

Below is a list of cable ferries in Australia, copied from Wikipedia and their fares.
It clearly shows what a joke the $27 return fare at the Daintree river ferry is, compared to the rest of Australia, there is only one other ferry that charges $10.-, one that charges $6.60 , one that charges $3.70 and all others are free.

Berowra Waters Ferry, at Berowra Waters in New South Wales, FREE
Blanchetown Punt NO FARES FOUND
Cadell Ferry, across the Murray River at Cadell, South Australia, FREE
Daintree River Ferry, across the Daintree River in Queensland, $27
Hibbard Ferry, across the Hastings River near Port Macquarie, New South Wales, $6.60
Lawrence Ferry, across the Clarence River in New South Wales, FREE
Lower Portland Ferry, across Hawkesbury River near Lower Portland, NSW, FREE
Lyrup Ferry, across the Murray River at Lyrup, South Australia, FREE
Mannum Ferry, across Murray River at Mannum, SA, (two parallel ferries), BOTH FREE
Moggill Ferry, across the Brisbane River near Ipswich, Queensland, $3.70
Morgan Ferry, across the Murray River in Morgan, South Australia, FREE
Mortlake Ferry, across the Parramatta River in Sydney, New South Wales, FREE
Narrung Ferry, across the Murray River at Narrung, South Australia, FREE
Noosa River Ferry, across the Noosa River in Queensland, $14 return
Purnong Ferry, across the Murray River in Purnong, South Australia, FREE
Raymond Island Ferry, from Paynesville to Raymond Island in Victoria, $10.-
Sackville Ferry, across the Hawkesbury River near the village of Sackville, NSW, FREE
Settlement Point Ferry, across the Hastings River near Port Macquarie, NSW $6.60
Speewa Ferry, across the Murray River between NSW and Victoria at Speewa, FREE
Swan Reach Ferry, across the Murray River in Swan Reach, South Australia, FREE
Tailem Bend Ferry, across the Murray River in Tailem Bend, South Australia, FREE
Ulmarra Ferry, across the Clarence River in New South Wales, FREE
Waikerie Ferry, across the Murray River in Waikerie, South Australia, FREE
Walker Flat Ferry, across the Murray River in Walker Flat, South Australia, FREE
Webbs Creek Ferry, across Hawkesbury River in the village of Wisemans Ferry, NSW, FREE
Wellington Ferry, across the Murray River in Wellington, South Australia, FREE
Wisemans Ferry, across the Hawkesbury River in the village of Wisemans Ferry, NSW, FREE
Wymah Ferry, across the Murray River between New South Wales and Victoria, FREE