From Stop Smart Meters Australia

The Australian Energy Market Commission (AEMC) has made a draft rule designed to turbocharge the deployment of smart meters. The draft rule determination states that the rule would achieve ‘universal uptake of smart meters in the NEM [National Energy Market] by 2030’.

The new rule represents a major departure from the ‘Expanding competition in metering and related services’ electricity rule that came into force in Tasmania, New South Wales, South Australia, Queensland and the Australian Capital Territory on 1 December 2017. 

Customers would no longer be given the option to retain legacy meters when retailers are undertaking meter replacements. 

Retailers would be required to use their best endeavours to meet yearly interim targets.  New civil penalties would apply to retailers for non-compliance with the final 2030 target of universal smart meter penetration. 

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The new draft rule, however, does not remove the right for customers to elect to have a non-communicating (Type 4A) smart meter.  The AEMC’s 2023 report, titled Review of the regulatory framework for metering services, stated that currently less than 0.01 per cent of customers had opted for Type 4A meters. 

In practice, the new Accelerating Smart Meter Deployment rule would affect customers in NSW, SA, QLD and the ACT.  The AEMC said that Tasmania already has an acceleration program in place. 

The number of notices that retailers would be required to send to customers before a meter deployment has been reduced from two to one.  The minimum notice period would also be shortened.  The notice would be required to be given to the customer no earlier than 60 business days and no later than 4 business days before the retailer proposes to replace the meter.  Currently, the minimum period required to give notice to a customer about an impending meter replacement is 15 business days. 

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The AEMC can only make and amend the electricity and energy retail rules if doing so will contribute to the relevant energy objective. This takes into account the long term interests of customers with respect to price, quality, safety, reliability and security of electricity as well as targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

For further information on the draft rule and to make a submission, go to: https://www.aemc.gov.au/rule-changes/accelerating-smart-meter-deployment

Submissions close on 30 May 2024. 

The AEMC’s tips for making a submission can be accessed at the following link: https://www.aemc.gov.au/our-work/changing-energy-rules-unique-process/making-rule-change-request/submission-tips

https://stopsmartmeters.com.au/2024/05/10/aemc-moves-to-accelerate-the-roll-out-of-smart-meters-in-australia/

https://smartmeterharm.org/2024/06/08/australia-aemc-moves-to-accelerate-the-roll-out-of-smart-meters/