Right across Australia, people are worried about the rising cost of living, wondering how they’ll afford to pay the bills let alone buy Christmas presents for the kids.

That’s worth keeping in mind whenever we talk about energy and resources, because ultimately those policy decisions have a big impact on the household budget. If power prices go up, people hurt and businesses are put under pressure. But when they go down, families have more money in their pockets and businesses can get on with their work.

This week the media has been focused on a special report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which said the world needed to essentially eliminate coal-fired power plants. This was seized on by those on the left who want to increase investment in renewable energy like solar and wind, while reducing pollution. But this ideology carries with it the real risk of higher power prices and rolling blackouts, especially during summer.

The big problem of putting ideology into the driver’s seat of the country is that you get policy-on-the-run, like Labor’s Carbon Tax and Pink Batts Scheme. We remember all-too-well the skyrocketing power prices under Labor, and we’re worried they would run straight back to that sort of economically disastrous policy if they were elected.

There have been some amazing significant advances in renewable electricity generation in recent times and no doubt they their contribution to Australia’s energy mix will continue to increase as they become cheaper and more efficient. But the people of Australia literally cannot afford to jump the gun on that technology, especially when they’re competing in a global market against people in countries who burn coal like it’s going out of fashion. Labor’s approach will simply burden Australians unfairly in an effort to ‘tick a box’, while the rest of the world goes on its merry way.

The Nationals believe we need cheaper, more reliable and cleaner power – in that order. We won’t let the people of regional and rural Australia go broke trying to keep the lights on simply because some international group says we should.