Electricity consumers have new power of choice

Released 30/11/2017

From 1 December, new electricity meters will be ‘smart’ meters that allow consumers more choice about how and when they use electricity, Deputy Director-General at the Environment, Planning and Sustainable Development Directorate, Geoffrey Rutledge, said today.

“Under the national ‘Power of Choice’ reforms being rolled out from 1 December, electricity meters for new connections and replacement meters in homes and small businesses will be smart meters provided by electricity retailers,” Mr Rutledge said.

“These reforms are part of an ongoing transition in the energy sector that has the potential to save electricity and costs.

“Smart meters provide consumers with greater choice and control over their electricity use and provide a platform for innovative new products and services that can help reduce their electricity bills.

“Because smart meters measure electricity use throughout the day, retailers will be able to offer tariff packages that reward consumers who do not use power in peak times.

“As well as providing better electricity usage information and choice to customers, smart meters reduce the need for physical and estimated meter reads, and make switching retailers a quicker process.

“We are excited with the introduction of choice into the market, and expect some healthy competition between retailers. We encourage consumers getting a smart meter to compare packages and choose the best plan for them but, as always, to read the fine print.

“It’s important to note that most people will not be affected by the change for some years. Your current meter is fine until it needs replacing or you want to upgrade to a smart meter.

“A major element of the reforms is that meters will no longer be installed by the electricity distributor, ActewAGL Distribution, but by the electricity retailers.

“The ACT Government is committed to the safe introduction of smart meters and only appropriately licensed electricians will install them.

“The energy supply landscape is changing rapidly and the Power of Choice changes will encourage new and emerging technologies and business models in the energy space, which should lead to increased competition and, ultimately, lower energy costs for all customers,” Mr Rutledge said.

More information on the national Power of Choice reforms is available on the following websites: Access Canberra, the Australian Energy Regulator and the electricity retailers.

- Statement ends -

Section: ACT Environment, Planning and Sustainable Development Directorate | Media Releases

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