What is Open Energy in Australia?

Fast read

Open Energy, or Consumer Data Rights (CDR) for energy, allows you to access and share your energy data with new providers for lower electricity bills.

Companies like Solar Analytics analyse your consumption patterns and provide personalised energy plan recommendations.

Open Energy is managed by the ACCC, ensuring data security and privacy. Sharing data is a simple online process, and eligibility is expanding to cover most energy retailers. To benefit from Solar Analytics, you may need a compatible inverter, but anyone can use their free Solar Maximiser tool.

What is Open Energy, and why could it give me lower electricity bills?

Open Energy, also known as Consumer Data Rights (CDR) for Energy, allows you to access and share your energy data. This data is collected by your electricity smart meter with new energy service providers. It gives you more choice, control, and convenience in managing your energy usage. It also helps in finding the best retail price deals, which because of competition could lead to lower energy bills.

Give me a simple explanation, please

Every time someone looks at energy plans from different providers to find a better deal, it is next to impossible to determine the best option. Other than the headline price per kWh, many other factors determine the final power bill.

Charges are based on each day and the time of day you use electricity. If you have solar panels, that will also affect your charges. Additionally, the amount you get paid for any extra solar power you produce will be factored in.

We are not like calculators. The extra information in the calculation can make it hard to pick the best energy plan.

This is where Open Energy going forward can help. Now your potential new energy provider can calculate your future likely bill based on your past energy consumption. It’s being recorded by your smart meter.

We can share your energy-efficient data with your consent and strict privacy measures in place. This will help us provide you with a more accurate comparison of electricity supply price plans.

couple looking at their energy bill

How can Open Energy help me reduce my energy bills?

By sharing your energy data with companies like Solar Analytics, they can analyse your electricity user pattern to make personalised energy plan recommendations. This allows you then to find the best local electricity deal, based on your past electricity use. The Solar Analytics algorithms can also calculate your cost savings from smart energy solutions like rooftop solar systems, batteries, and heat pumps.

Give me all key benefits in order of importance

1. Increased transparency and choice

By understanding their energy usage, consumers can choose the right energy provider and plan their energy consumption more efficiently.

2. Reduced energy costs

The data can help consumers identify ways to reduce their energy consumption. This can lead to lower energy bills and a more sustainable lifestyle.

3. Improved grid reliability

Open energy data can be used to improve the efficiency of the energy grid. This can help to reduce outages and improve the reliability of energy supply.

4. Accelerated innovation

This new data can be used to develop new products and services that help consumers manage their energy use. It can lead to new opportunities for businesses and create jobs in the clean energy sector.

5. Enhanced competition

Open Energy data can help to level the playing field for energy providers. It can lead to lower prices and better services for consumers.

6. Promote renewable energy

The new information can help consumers choose renewable energy providers and track their own renewable energy generation.

7. Increase energy efficiency

When data is presented in a clear and simple manner, consumers can easily find ways to lower their energy usage. The reason is that they can work out the peaks of their electricity use and change behaviour. This could include turning off lights when they leave a room or installing energy-efficient appliances.

8. Has the potential to protect consumers from fraud

Open Energy data can be used to detect and prevent energy fraud, such as unauthorised meter tampering.

Is my energy data secure under Open Energy?

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) manages Open Energy, ensuring strict data handling and security measures. Companies like Solar Analytics undergo a rigorous accreditation process to protect your data and comply with privacy laws.

They must provide transparency about how they will use your energy usage data, who will have access to it, and for how long they can access it. You can manage and withdraw your consent at any time.

How can I share my energy data with Solar Analytics or other providers?

Sharing your energy data is a simple online process that usually takes less than a minute. You can share specific data with accredited providers like Solar Analytics, giving them access to the information they need to offer you tailored energy-saving services.

Workman examining genaration of solar power plant,

Who is eligible for Open Energy?

Open Energy is now available to residents in the National Electricity Market (NEM) as of late 2023. The NEM includes Queensland, New South Wales, the Australian Capital Territory, Victoria, Tasmania, and South Australia.

Initially, Open Energy limits access to customers of the three largest energy retailers: AGL, Origin, and Energy Australia. By December 2023, nearly all energy retailers will need to join Open Energy, making it accessible to almost everyone.

What do I need to benefit from Solar Analytics services fully?

To maximise the benefits of Solar Analytics services, you need to have a wi-fi enabled Fronius, Sungrow, Goodwe, GE, or LG inverter, which allows them to monitor your solar system energy generation. However, anyone can use their free Solar Maximiser tool to determine which innovative energy solution, such as rooftop solar, solar battery, or smart hot water heat pump, will save them the most.

For more information, visit the Consumer Data Right website here.

Are other countries developing Open Energy models?

  • In the US, the EEDT Act of 2019 makes it mandatory for utilities to share their energy usage data with consumers. Consumers can use this data to track their energy usage, identify areas where they can save energy, and compare different energy providers.
  • In the United Kingdom, the Energy Data Sharing Voluntary Code of Practice sets out the principles for sharing energy data between consumers and energy suppliers. We designed this code to help consumers make informed decisions about their energy use and to improve the efficiency of the energy market.
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