Energy Trends Visualisation Tools

Chief Investigators

Purpose of project

The electricity industry has experienced and continues to experience significant changes that present challenges for managing system security and reliability. Technical challenges, changes to cost and revenue structures emerge as a result of the energy transformation. It also raises questions about pricing of and access to network services. Solving these new challenges for the benefit of consumers requires new solutions, including new services, new technologies, new pricing and incentives.

However, evidence from smart meter rollouts and other demand-side initiatives in Australia suggests that the current lack of trust between consumers and industry has led to hundreds of millions of dollars in avoidable costs, delays in investment and higher energy bills. Clear and truthful information can assist stakeholders in understanding the changes in the industry better and how those changes can benefit consumers.

Overall, the outcomes that this project will contribute to include:

• Develop a common language and terminology to bridge the gap between the demand and supply side of electricity and promote energy literacy

• Assist in managing the spread of misinterpretation and misinformation in the media through the provision of clear and effective communication on energy trends

• Develop a foundation for a data management strategy for RACE for 2030 and its projects.

Impact of project

This project will lay the foundation of a proposed approach to convey complex information in a way that key groups of energy stakeholders understand, which will lead to increased awareness, understanding and informed decision-making. This will promote innovation in consumer-driven and creative future energy solutions and allow consumers to better understand and navigate the coming energy transition. This research will complement and enhance existing trust measurement and building activities, e.g., annual Energy Consumers Australia’s Consumer Sentiment survey and the Energy Charter.

The expected short-term outcomes from the project will include:

• Improved consumer trust and understanding on key trends and changes taking place in the electricity system

• Improved decision-making support for energy stakeholders based on near real-time evidence and data

• Established foundations for effective consumer and stakeholder communication around DER integration and access to network services

• Informed industry stakeholder engagement in regulatory reform to understand emerging issues and develop strategies to mitigate / manage them.

In the long term, the effective communication of complex energy data is expected to support managing of security and reliability challenges faced by the rapid uptake of distributed energy resources and the technical and pricing challenges it raises. It can assist in developing pathways for implementing load-balancing strategies that benefit the network and consumers. It can provide a common and unified platform to bring energy users together.

This project will address key institutional challenges faced by the electricity network today and thus is an enabler indirectly contributing to RACE for 2030 impact indicators such as reducing customer energy bills and carbon emissions.

Project partners – industry and research

University of New South Wales (UNSW) (Lead), Australian Energy Market Operator, Ausgrid, DEECA (VIC), Energy OS, Endeavour Energy, Powerlink, University of Technology Sydney (UTS)

Industry Reference Group members

BlueScope Steel, DEECA (VIC), Energy Consumers Australia (ECA), Endevour Energy, Energy Security Board, Powerlink

Project code

0266

Page last updated 12 March 2024