Renew undertakes research and policy analysis to advocate on behalf of consumers in the energy, water and transport markets.
Our objective is to empower households to utilise cost-effective, efficient and environmentally sustainable solutions to create more resilient and sustainable homes and communities.
In the National Electricity Market, Renew is a formally recognised Consumer Advocacy organisation, and has been active and effective in energy market policy and regulatory issues over the past fifteen years. As part of our ongoing consumer advocacy work, Renew is a participant member of the National Consumer Roundtable on Energy.
Working in collaboration with other consumer advocates, Renew has played a key role in improving outcomes for Australian households, including:
- Ensuring the national appliance efficiency rating scheme and renewable energy target were retained and improved, when they had been threatened with closure
- Better governance structures in the National Energy Market
- Development of a model for multiple energy trading relationships for households
- A more nuanced approach by electricity distributors to cost-reflective network tariffs
- Improvements to the regulation of embedded networks
- Improvements to energy price comparison sites Energy Made Easy and Victoria Energy Compare
- Informing consumers, industry, and governments of the true costs of gas and electricity as household fuels, to guide decision-making and policy-making
- Government commitments to consumer-focused and privacy-responsive energy data access frameworks
- Victorian Government commitments to minimum standards for energy efficiency (as well as health, safety, and amenity) in rental housing, and deferral of contestable metering in order to realise the full value of the smart meter program
- Developing work on improving consumer protections for consumers of non-traditional energy products and services
Over the past five years, there has been significant change in the energy market – particularly in the relationships between technology, economics and consumer behaviour. A real opportunity is emerging in Australia for energy consumers to be more engaged with the energy market and in their demand for energy services. Renew believes that consumers can drive the type of change that is required for a more socially, economically and environmentally sustainable energy system.