The regulated tariffs for gas and electricity in NSW are set by the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART), and typically come into effect on 1 July each year.
EWON has no role or authority in setting prices. While this means we are not able to investigate complaints about price increases, EWON can review whether charges and tariffs have been correctly applied to an account. So, if you have received a high bill that you consider does not accurately reflect your usage and your retailer is either not able to explain it or you are not satisfied with their response, you can contact EWON for assistance.
How are energy prices determined?
IPART invites submissions on proposed price increases, to which any individual or business may respond. Utility companies and consumer groups regularly put in submissions presenting their point of view about any price increase. All EWON’s submissions are available on our website.
EWON also has regular contact with government agencies and regulators about issues arising from customer complaints. Where these complaints indicate that pricing is a concern, this issue is raised and highlighted.
Energy charges on your bills
The tariff you see on your electricity or gas bill reflects the retailer’s costs of supplying the electricity or gas to you, which include:
- the costs of purchasing wholesale electricity or gas
- the cost of transporting it through the transmission and distribution networks (note that network charges are set separately by the Australian Energy Regulator)
- the retail operating costs such as billing and operating call centres
Retail tariffs comprise both fixed and variable charges:
- The variable component is applied to the amount of electricity or gas you use. Electricity is expressed in cents per kilowatt hour. This will vary each quarter, depending on your consumption.
- The service availability charge (electricity) or supply charge (gas) is expressed in cents per day. This represents the fixed charges the network incurs, (for example meter readings, maintaining the poles and wires/pipes, vegetation management, maintaining a call centre) regardless of how much energy the customer uses. Every customer pays SAC, even if they have consumed little or no energy at all that quarter.
What should you be paying?
How much you pay for electricity or gas each quarter depends on how much energy you have consumed and the tariff you are charged.
The retail tariff you are charged will depend on the type of contract you have with your retailer.
- Customers on a standard form contract: Domestic electricity customers who are on a standard form contract with the standard retailer for their geographic area are charged the regulated retail tariff set by IPART.
- Customers on a negotiated/market contract: As the retail energy market is competitive, different retailers can charge different tariffs. Each retailer offers a variety of contracts and they may introduce new offers or deals at any time.
- Small business customers typically consume more energy than a standard domestic customer. If they consume more than 160,000 kWh electricity per year or 1 terrajoule of gas per year they are required to enter into a negotiated contract where the tariff is not regulated.
For more information on regulated retail pricing in NSW visit www.ipart.nsw.gov.au
For more information on national regulation visit www.aer.gov.au