Energy Made Easy - New Federal Goverment Website - Only works for ACT

The federal government's Australian Energy Regulator (AER) recently launched a new website called Energy Made Easy (link).

Despite almost taking the negergy slogan (energy efficiency made easy) the site has a few features worth checking out.

Initially, it was touted as a price comparison site that consumers could actually trust. A reference point against the likes of One Big Switch and others.

Electricity and gas price comparison - missing

Interestingly, for us here in NSW, it fails on this account. You just get a reference link to IPART's My Energy Offers website (which is actually very useful, as I have discussed before).

Message for NSW postcodes:

A comparison website that doesn't do much comparing

In fact, it does the same thing for Victoria, Queensland and South Australia referring to the following state authorities:

  • Victoria Essential Services Commission - Your Choice website
  • Queensland Competition Authority - Comparator website
  • South Australia Essential Services Commission - Estimator website

It's worse if you're in the other states:

  • Western Australia and Northern Territory - sorry, you are "not covered by the National Energy Retail Law and the National Energy Retail Rules"
  • Tasmania - sorry, you have no choice... "all residential customers in Tasmania are currently “non-contestable”, which means that they purchase electricity from Aurora Energy"

Bottom line: it only works for ACT

After diligently typing in postcodes from all around Australia, I typed in one for Canberra, ACT.

Low and behold, it works.

So all the politicians and bureaucrats can compare offers for their Canberra pads, but most others around the country can't!?

Some redeeming features

The most interesting is the energy usage comparison. You type in your postcode and number of people and it gives you typical electricity usage. There are plenty of problems with this as well (more on this later) but for now it's not a bad estimate to put you in the ball park of 'average usage.'


One part that does work (to some extent): average electricity usage by region

In summary, some of the reference links are worth looking at, but the website falls well short of its byline "the power to compare."

It seems to me that only Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland are providing meaningful price comparison sites for residents in their states. This new federal government site 'Energy Made Easy' has done little to actually help consumers.

- Ryan McCarthy

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