When it comes to the relationship between power companies and consumers, we’ve known for a while that things are out of whack. Power prices are through the roof and almost every solar owner I speak to has a story about connection delays, hidden costs and unfair fixed fees.
But there’s a rule change on the horizon that could help all Australian energy consumers regain control of our power bills. It’s called the Demand Management Incentive Scheme Rule Change and it works by rewarding power companies for encouraging consumers to save energy. This provides incentives for power companies to support the installation of more solar with storage, helping to lower energy bills.
According to research from the Australian Energy Market Commission (AEMC), the body who makes the rules which govern power companies, this rule change would reduce household bills by an estimated $120 to $500 a year*.
The fact is, the way our energy market operates currently goes against every notion of common sense. Why are companies investing in more and more network infrastructure – that’s the grid that delivers us power – even though electricity demand is falling? The same reason power prices have doubled since 2007. It’s in the rules. As things stand, the AEMC rules reward companies for investing in unnecessary infrastructure, and consumers are left to foot the bill.
If accepted, this rule change will see common sense restored. It would mean that when consumers reduce their energy usage by going solar or using efficiency measures, their power bills would actually go down accordingly.
We’re at a turning point. If this rule change is accepted, our energy sector could finally be ready to embrace a sun-powered future. If it’s rejected, there will be fewer and fewer reasons for Australians to go solar; current solar owners will continue to be hit with discriminatory charges and all Australian energy consumers will face rising fixed costs.
Right now we have an opportunity to win power back for energy consumers.Click here to to make a submission to the AEMC, urging them to accept this rule change. It will take you no longer than 10 minutes and -considering the time and money this rule change could save you in the long run – I’d say it’s worth it.
Here’s to a fairer energy system,
Claire O’Rourke, National Director
P.S.Submissions to the AEMC close on Thursday, so make sure you get yours in ASAP using our quick and easy form. Click here to make your submission today.
Solar Citizens is an independent community-based organisation bringing together millions of solar owners and supporters to protect and grow solar in Australia. You can keep up with Solar Citizens on Twitter or like us on Facebook.