PIAC lodged a submission to the NSW Senate Select Committee’s inquiry into Electricity supply, demand and prices in NSW. The electricity price rises in July 2017 have highlighted the need for numerous reforms following years of successive price rises and point to systemic issues in the National Electricity Market (NEM)
Deregulation of electricity prices, the emergence of competition, innovation (particularly in relation to behind-the-meter services), and the escalation of prices have created the need for consumers to be actively engaged with the energy market. PIAC supports allowing consumers to make full use of competitive market offers and new technologies. However, doing so should not be a precondition of accessing affordable energy
The NEM is undergoing transition and in considering reforms and it no longer makes sense to look at aspects of planning in isolation and a more ‘whole-of-system’ perspective is required as there is a much broader range of alternatives available to address planning issues. PIAC stresses that the system must not be designed to keep the lights on at all costs. This is not a price-reliability trade-off that consumers would choose.