The Australian Energy Regulator (AER) has today released the residential electricity and gas consumption benchmarks for 2020 and accompanying report.
Every three years, the AER is required to produce electricity bill benchmarks – the comparison graphs or tables that appear on household energy bills.
The benchmarks show an average estimate of energy usage for households of different sizes in local zones around Australia (except Western Australia and the Northern Territory). The purpose of the benchmarks is for residential customers to compare their usage with similar households.
From April 2021, the new electricity benchmarks must appear on residential energy bills in relevant jurisdictions.
The AER has also updated the gas benchmarks. It is optional for retailers to display these on household bills.
The AER has updated the Guidance on energy consumption benchmarks on residential customers’ bills. The guidance aims to assist energy retailers in complying with their obligations regarding displaying the electricity consumption benchmarks.
Under the National Energy Retail Rules, the AER must update the benchmarks at least every three years. The previous benchmarks were published and provided to retailers in December 2017.
Retailers have until 31 March 2021 to publish the updated electricity benchmarks on residential customers’ bills. Retailers will continue to include the current (2017) electricity benchmarks on customers’ bills until then.