In May 2018, the Australian Government announced that energy data would be included in the Consumer Data Right (CDR). This will allow consumers to require an energy retailer to share their data with an accredited data recipient, such as a comparison site to get more tailored, competitive services.
Product data sharing in the energy sector commenced on 1 October 2022, and consumer data sharing commenced 15 November 2022 for initial energy retailers.
The CDR will apply to specified data sets in the National Electricity Market (NEM). This includes consumer data sets relating to the sale or supply of electricity, including where electricity is bundled with gas. Product data sets in the CDR energy sector include electricity, gas and dual fuel plans.
The Consumer Data Right legislation provides an outline of the CDR legislative framework, including a history of the CDR Rules.
The following legislation is also relevant to implementation of the CDR in the energy sector:
- Consumer Data Right (Energy Sector) Designation 2020, the instrument which designates the energy sector as subject to the CDR
- laws relevant to the management of CDR data in relation to the energy sector including the National Electricity Law, the National Energy Retail Law, the Electricity Industry Act 2000 (Vic).
The Office of the Australian Information Commissioner is currently working on updates to the CDR Privacy Safeguard Guidelines and Guide to Privacy for Data Holders to reflect the expansion of the CDR to the energy sector.
- Consumer Data Right rules amendments (version 4), Treasury, 17 August 2021
- Energy rules framework consultation, ACCC, 8 July 2020
- Energy sector designation instrument, Treasury, 6 May 2020
- Position paper: data access model for energy data, ACCC, 29 August 2019
- Priority energy datasets, Treasury, 29 August 2019
- Consultation on energy data access models, ACCC, 25 February 2019
Under the CDR for the energy sector, a primary data holder is an energy retailer with whom the consumer has a relationship and holds data sets including:
- customer data
- account data
- billing data
- tailored tariff data.
The Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) is a secondary data holder who has no direct relationship with the consumer but holds relevant data sets including:
- metering data
- National Metering Identifier standing data
- Distributed energy resources register data.
Data sets are defined in detail in Schedule 4 to the CDR Rules.
The Australian Energy Regulator (AER) and the Victorian Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning are designated data holders for all relevant product data under the designation instrument. They are responsible for responding to product data requests.
A retailer is a data holder of energy sector data that retails electricity to connection points in the National Electricity Market (NEM). Data holder obligations only apply to authorised or licensed retailers that operate through the NEM.
The date that CDR obligations commence for the energy sector will depend on the data holder and the complexity of the data request.
A complex request is a consumer data request made on behalf of a large customer (including commercial and industrial customers), a secondary user, or related to a joint or partnership account.
The following entities are identified in the CDR Rules as ‘initial retailers’:
The AGL Energy Group
The Origin Energy Group
The Energy Australia Group
Initial retailers must comply with Part 4 of the CDR Rules, for non-complex consumer data requests, from 15 November 2022. These retailers must comply with Part 4 of the CDR Rules for complex requests from 15 May 2023.
‘Larger retailers’ are defined in the CDR Rules as retailers that:
Once a retailer becomes a larger retailer for the purposes of the CDR Rules, it remains one regardless of whether its number of small customers drops below 10,000.
Part 4 of the CDR rules will apply to larger retailers in relation to non-complex and complex requests from 1 November 2023 and 1 May 2024 respectively.
Retailers below the threshold of 10,000 small customers are considered ‘small retailers’ in the CDR Rules and will not have data holder obligations unless they become accredited as an accredited data recipient or wish to participate voluntarily as data holders.
Small retailers interested in participating in the CDR system voluntarily as data holders or as an accredited data recipient can contact the ACCC.
Small retailers that become accredited as data recipients will be required to comply with their obligations for non-complex requests from 15 November 2023 (if they are accredited before or on 15 November 2022)
12 months after the day they become accredited.
Small retailers that are accredited must comply with their obligations in relation to complex requests from 15 May 2024 (if accredited before or on 15 November 2022) or 18 months after the day they become accredited.
Small retailers that wish to participate in the CDR voluntarily must comply with Part 4 of the CDR for non-complex requests and complex requests from a date of its choosing but no earlier than 15 November 2022 or 15 May 2023 respectively.