Going back to the Seventies and the early 80’s I recall Hydro Tasmania media statements saying water levels in the state’s dams were of high concern: levels were at 30% off full capacity.

Hydro advised customers to get wood heaters to preserve water in the dams. Customers going into Hobart’s Hydro building for advice were told this.

It’s all changed now &helped; with the arrival of Basslink water reserves are drained as heavily as possible to maximise profits in mainland markets. regularly Hydro dams are down to 30 per cent capacity (that is, 70 per cent empty; how different to the 70’s, early 80’s …)

A little history …

In the 90’s Hydro developed a sudden change of direction and “Hydro Heat” as a new product to drive sales of power.

With Management suddenly decided they were in the electricity business and should promote electricity sales … instead of turning business away.

“Hydro Heat” consultants (employees of Hydro Retail), were set up within the new business model.

This “Hydro Heat scheme” later changed name to the “Preferred Supplier Scheme”: under the Aurora brand, both models say their staff go to consumers homes to advise on what heating to select.

Then referred to Aurora Preferred Suppliers as accredited partners for supply and installation of recommended electrical heating appliance options.

The “T42” special rate for heating was created that initially was cheaper than the T41 hot water rate. The T41 hot water meter was used and simply re-named t42 . This conveniently bundled hot water into the new “Hydro Heat” as a new lower rate T42 deal to drive sales volumes.

As time went on the T41 hot water solos rate meter and the new T42 re-classified meter where “Hydro Heat “ appliances were installed, became the same price rate per kw hr. Then in later years Aurora simply stopped reclassifying meters to T42 from T41 , seemingly to cost staff costs in doing so, as if made no difference to pricing, but lost tracking of new installations of Hydro Heat data for the Aurora Preferred suppliers division, which has since been disbanded.

Tasnetworks /Aurora’s new boss Lance Balcombe is incorrect in his statements that T31 subsidises T41/42 as far as home heating rates are concerned.

He is simply trying to kill off the T41/42 tariff inappropriately and to see gross disadvantage to a large sector of Tasmanians needing economical heating against our cold Tasmanian climate.

Bryan Green: Groom backflip on Tariff 41