Energy Consumers Australia appreciates the opportunity to respond to the Energy Security Board’s (ESB) Issues Paper on a Post 2025 Market Design (Issues Paper). The Post 2025 process sits alongside the Integrated System Plan (ISP), the Economic Regulatory Framework Review and the Distributed Energy Integration Program as work about the long-term future of the electricity system, the market and other supporting structures.
It is difficult to overstate the nature of the changes that are happening in the way the electricity system is organised and the way Australian households and small businesses power their homes and their small businesses. The mass migration of more than two million households into the world of not just buying electricity but generating it on their roofs – driven by necessity and enabled by new technology – has fundamentally changed the energy system and the energy market. A system that was once centralised and ‘one-way’ (a ‘small number of large things’), is increasingly decentralised and two-way (a ‘large number of small things’).
The core question we explore in this submission is how market design needs to evolve to serve the long-term interests of Australian households and small businesses in this new system. At the same time, we recognise that market design is not everything. Business culture, government policy, the adequacy of the safety-net and trust provide a critical context for any market and shape outcomes for
consumers. This bigger picture becomes even more important and complicated in times of transition and uncertainty.
This is not easy work and we support the approach in the Issues Paper, which poses a set of questions about frameworks to inform the way we can think about task. Energy Consumers Australia is keen to be part of a conversation at this level of broad objectives and market drivers before we launch into the detail about specific solutions. Listening to what consumers are telling us about their experience in the market now and their aspirations for the future, should be the compass we use to navigate this challenging transition task.
The full submission can be read here.