The Queensland Competition Authority (QCA) has published the final determination on 2023-24 regulated retail electricity prices, with changes coming into effect on 1 July 2023. You can download and read the QCA Final Determination including the underlying reasons for price increases here.
Below is a quick overview of the major updates included in the determination:
Prices have increased across all tariff classes, including (but not limited to):
- Tariff 20, a small business tariff which will see an increase of 26.8% for the average customer.
- Tariff 44, a large business demand tariff which will see an increase of around 15.6% for the average customer.
Feed in tariff increasing
The regional solar feed-in tariff will also increase by 44.5% to 13.441c/kWh for power exported to the grid from eligible solar systems.
Time of use tariffs in the spotlight
The time of use business tariffs for small customers, tariffs 22B and 22C, incentivise the use of power during solar generation times between 9am and 4pm (day), and penalise businesses that use power between 4pm and 9pm (peak). For example, the new Tariff 22C has a ‘day’ rate of 10.875 c/kWh and a ‘peak’ rate of 63.837 c/kWh.
What can your business do to ensure an easy transition?
Here’s a few suggested next steps to understand the impact on your business:
- Check whether your existing tariff rates have changed. To read more about the tariffs, visit the Ergon Business tariff webpage here.
- Check whether a load-control or interruptible supply tariff will work for you. If you are a small customer using less than 100,000kWh per year, you could choose T34 as a primary tariff, or choose from T31 or T33 as secondary tariffs. As a large customer, you could choose T60A as a primary tariff or T60B as a secondary tariff.
- Note that load control is not available in all areas.
- Supply under these tariffs can be interrupted during peak demand times so you should assess whether that interruption will be acceptable to your operations.
- Read our article about load control tariffs here.
- Check whether a time of use business tariff, Tariff 22B and 22C, will work for you. Under these tariffs, you will be charged a lower rate when using power during the day (9am to 4pm) but rates will increase significantly if you use power in the peak time (4pm to 9pm), where they increase to over 63c/kWh on Tariff 22C.
- Find out more about potential relief opportunities:
- Drought Relief from Electricity Charges Scheme (DRECS): Some parts of Queensland are still eligible for drought relief with their obsolete tariff under the Drought Relief from Electricity Charges Scheme (DRECS). Your Daily Service Charge will continue to be waived under your replacement tariff/s, if you continue to meet the DRECS eligibility requirements.
- Energy bill relief for small businesses: Small businesses will receive a $650 energy bill rebate in 2023-24. To find out more about the scheme, visit the Queensland Government website here.
- If you are in regional Queensland, consider signing up to Ergon’s Energy Analysis via My Account.
- Review your operations to see if there is additional energy consumption you can shift to a time that coincides with when your solar system is generating the most output. Remember, it is more cost effective to utilise any solar generated on site rather than exporting to the grid.
There is no cost to change tariffs. However, your meter may need to be updated to access the tariff. If the meter box needs upgrading or a meter needs to be changed due to tariffs expiring, a licenced electrical contractor will be required, and fees will need to be discussed with the contractor.
For more information about energy tariffs and energy efficiency, contact QFF’s Energy Team via email firstname.lastname@example.org
If you are in the Goondiwindi or Southern Downs regional council areas, QFF’s free Energy Southern Queensland (EnergySQ) program is available to assist farms to identify energy cost savings opportunities.