New electricity and gas consumption benchmarks apply from March 2018

AU Energy Compliance
We recently discussed changes to the way in which retail pricing information is communicated to retail customers (see https://compliancequarter.com.au/new-format-communicating-retail-pricing-information-energy-customers/). Another recent change that retailers will need to come to terms with are the new electricity and gas consumption benchmarks. Retailers will be required to update their customer billing to include electricity consumption benchmarks for bills issued from 30 March 2018 onwards. In today’s piece, we explain how the benchmarks are to be used by retailers. For further information see the Australian Energy Regulator’s (AER) Guidance on energy consumption benchmarks on residential customers’ bills (https://www.aer.gov.au/system/files/Bill%20benchmark%20guidance%202018_0.pdf). [caption id="attachment_2973" align="aligncenter" width="640"] Photo by Maxime Le Conte des Floris on Unsplash[/caption] The purpose of electricity and gas consumption benchmarks Electricity and gas consumption benchmarks let customers compare their own household energy use with the…
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New format for communicating Retail Pricing Information to energy customers

New format for communicating Retail Pricing Information to energy customers

AU Energy Compliance
There has been strong demand over the last few years for improved customer access to information that will help them meaningfully compare different energy plans and thereby access more affordable energy. In response to this concern, the Australian Energy Regulator (AER) has revised its draft Retail Pricing Information Guidelines (the draft Guidelines) for which it now seeks public feedback. In today’s article, we summarise those draft Guidelines. Reason for change A range of reviews and consultations over the last few years (including the Independent Review into the Future Security of the National Electricity Market (the ‘Finkel Review’)) have identified that one of the contributors to energy unaffordability for consumers is the difficulty for consumers in working out where they can get a better deal. Consultation on a Customer Price Information…
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Webinar Recording: Legal Update: Power Purchase Agreements (PPA’s): Key legal concerns

AU Energy Compliance
Under a PPA, the energy consumer pays for electricity consumed or generated from a solar PV system installed on their premises. The benefit to the consumer is that there is no upfront cost. There is a range of legal considerations for a business looking to offer a PPA. Are solar panels fixtures? What can go wrong? Today we answer some of these key questions. View our webinar here. by Connor James and Anne Wardell Welcome The presentation will run for 25 minutes then we will have a Q & A for 10 minutes after. What is a PPA? PPA stands for Power Purchase Agreement. It is a contract to purchase electricity at a pre-determined price for a fixed period. Who are the parties to a PPA? • A purchaser or off-taker.…
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Webinar Recording Energy Updates: AEMC taking the axe to Embedded Network Exemptions

AU Energy Compliance
If implemented, the AEMC recommendations will effectively take an axe to the existing regulation of embedded networks - embedded network exemptions - redefining a sector of the energy market that is growing in importance. The changes discussed in this webinar are focused on NECF jurisdictions (NSW, QLD, SA, ACT and TAS). In a webinar to follow we will consider similarly significant changes to be implemented in Victoria following the gazettal of a new section 17 order. View our webinar here. Hosted by Connor James and Anne Wardell Welcome The presentation will run for 25 minutes then we will have a Q & A for 10 minutes after. What is an Embedded Network? • Embedded networks are private electricity networks connected to the distribution and transmission system of the national electricity…
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GEMS Act Review, Renewable Energy Targets and AER announcements: January 2018 Energy Compliance Update

GEMS Act Review, Renewable Energy Targets and AER announcements: January 2018 Energy Compliance Update

AU Energy Compliance
With only the first month of the year gone there have already been a range of regulatory initiatives announced that affect businesses in the energy industry. In our first monthly update on energy regulation and compliance for the year we identify the regulatory and compliance announcements that you should be aware of, including renewable energy targets. [caption id="attachment_2938" align="aligncenter" width="640"] Photo by Chris Barbalis on Unsplashgy,[/caption] The GEMS Act Review On 19 January, the first independent review of the Greenhouse and Energy Minimum Standards Act 2012 (GEMS Act) was announced. The GEMS Act is the legislation that allows the Government to set mandatory minimum efficiency requirements for appliances and products and national labelling requirements. This five-year independent review is mandated by the Act and will report to the Minister by…
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Strengthening protections for customers requiring life support equipment

Strengthening protections for customers requiring life support equipment

AU Energy Compliance, Uncategorized
Photo by Jair Lázaro on Unsplash By Anne Wardell, Compliance Quarter.  The Australian Energy Market Commission (AEMC) has today released its final rule in relation to the rights which must be provided to life support customers by energy retailers and distributors. The final rule will become effective from 1 February 2019, however, from 1 February 2018 transitional arrangements will apply. The transitional arrangements are: provide the protections in the current life support rules during the transition period (i.e. 1 February 2018 to 1 February 2019) to all existing customers who are registered as having life support equipment, whether they have provided medical confirmation or not; and provide the protections in the current life support rules during the transition period to all new customers who advise a retailer or distributor they…
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The Demand Management Incentive Scheme

AU Energy Compliance
Last month we talked about Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) and Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) funding of the ‘Innovative Demand Response Initiative’ trials https://compliancequarter.com.au/innovative-demand-response-initiative/. In today’s article, we look at the recent release of the Australian Energy Regulator’s (AER) Demand Management Incentive Scheme (the Scheme). Like the Innovative Demand Response Initiative, the Scheme is also aimed at reducing network pressure by the pro-active management of electricity demand, rather than electricity supply. This scheme focuses on incentivising demand management for Distribution Network Service Providers (DNSPs) only. Background to the Demand Management Incentive Scheme The Independent Review into the Future Security of the National Electricity Market (the ‘Finkel Report’), released earlier this year, recognised the effect the continuing retirement of older energy generators will have on the National Energy Market (NEM).…
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Who has Life Support Obligations in an Embedded Network?

AU Energy Compliance
As part of the ‘Power of Choice’ reforms, on 1 December 2017, the life support notification obligations for embedded networks were updated. Life support notification obligations ensure that those capable of disconnecting electricity supply (i.e. retailers and distributors) are aware of customer life support needs (such as the connection of a kidney dialysis machine or a ventilator). In today’s article, we explain what the life support obligations in embedded networks are and why it is essential that all businesses involved with an embedded network understand the obligations. [caption id="attachment_2738" align="aligncenter" width="640"] Photo by Hush Naidoo on Unsplash[/caption] By Dr Drew Donnelly, Compliance Quarter. Background to Life Support Obligations In an embedded network there may be only one entity directly involved in energy supply. That is, there might be one business…
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Consultation on draft exempt embedded network guidelines (part two): what is a ‘dedicated connection asset’?

Consultation on draft exempt embedded network guidelines (part two): what is a ‘dedicated connection asset’?

AU Energy Compliance
Last week we looked at some of the proposals contained in the draft electricity network service provider registration exemption guideline (draft guideline) (see https://compliancequarter.com.au/consultation-draft-exempt-embedded-network-guidelines-part-one-embedded-network-managers-take-note/). Today we continue that discussion, looking at the changes in that draft guideline that relate to the National Electricity Amendment (Transmission Connection and Planning Arrangements) Final Rule Determination (the rule change). In today’s article, we address the new concept of a ‘dedicated connection asset’ and the exemptions that have been proposed for any business that owns or controls those assets. [caption id="attachment_2730" align="aligncenter" width="640"] Photo by Oliver Wendel on Unsplash[/caption] By Dr Drew Donnelly, Compliance Quarter. What is a dedicated connection asset? When we think about an embedded network, we often think of private wiring systems connecting a group of customers to the local electricity network…
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Embedded Network Operators take note: A new General Exemption Order in Victoria

Embedded Network Operators take note: A new General Exemption Order in Victoria

AU Energy Compliance
The sale of electricity in Victoria is regulated by the Electricity Industry Act 2000 (VIC).  Sellers must either operate under a licence or an exemption. Most embedded network operators (ENOs) in Victoria operate under a General Exemption Order (‘GEO’) that exempts them from the requirement to hold a licence. On 15 November 2017, a GEO under section 17 of the Electricity Industry Act 2000 (VIC) was published in the Victorian Government Gazette. The new GEO implements recommendations from the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning, whose final report was published in August 2017. The new GEO will come into effect from 1 April 2018 (clause 11 will come into effect on 11 July 2018). [caption id="attachment_2716" align="aligncenter" width="640"] Photo by Samuel Zeller on Unsplash[/caption] By Connor James, Compliance Quarter. …
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