Melbourne, Australia — (METERING.COM)
Victoria’s Minister for Energy and Resources Nicholas Kotsiras recently announced the availability of new flexible pricing options for Victorian consumers with smart meters.
At the same time a new independent interactive online tool was made available for households to investigate potential savings with flexible pricing plans. Users are able to upload their smart meter data or other recent bill data to build a ‘power profile’, from which the savings can be identified.
Retailers have a range of flexible pricing offers with various rates at peak, off-peak and shoulder times. However, switching to flexible pricing is voluntary.
Strong consumer protections will cover the new flexible pricing arrangements that are offered by electricity retailers. There will also be a ‘safe try’ period up until March 2015 during which households will be able to move to a new flexible price offer with their current retailer with the knowledge that they can switch back to their previous offer without penalty if they are uncomfortable with the change.
In order to ensure the facts about flexible pricing are made widely available, the government has established an Energy Information Fund (EIF) aimed to build capacity within the not-for-profit community to deliver information and education about flexible pricing, smart meters and the electricity market in general. Applications for the first round of funding are currently being sought (up to October 25).
The government has also appointed a community liaison manger, Mark Travill, with responsibility for providing information to communities and other stakeholders on smart meters and energy efficiency.