The Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) has announced that it will shortly commence consultations over the accreditation of Embedded Network Managers. In December 2017 new rules will come into effect requiring many owners of embedded networks to appoint an Embedded Network Manager.
This new requirement is in response to concerns that in many cases customers of embedded networks were being hindered when seeking to purchase electricity directly from an authorised retailer rather than from the embedded network itself. (Note that in all cases the embedded network will charge the customer for the network component of their purchases, it is only the electrical energy component that the customer may elect to purchase from an authorised retailer rather than from the embedded network itself).
The role of the Embedded Network Manager will be to ensure that where a customer seeks to purchase electricity competitively all of the required information is provided to the customer hand his preferred retailer to enable that purchase to take place. This includes things like providing the new retailer with metering information about the embedded network, prices at which the customer will be charged for network services after transferring to the new retailer and similar.
The establishment of the Embedded Network Manager is a major change to the way embedded networks are run. Current proposals will require that, upon commencement in December 2017, all embedded networks must appoint an Embedded Network Manager where either:
• The embedded network is connected to 30 or more clients, or;
• One or more customers connected to the embedded network has or is seeking to purchase electricity directly from an authorised retailer.
In order to be appointed as an Embedded Network Manager a party must be accredited by AEMC to act in this capacity. AEMO expects that its consultation will be complete by the end of February 2017.
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