VIC – Panel releases Draft Recommendations on Banning Embedded Networks

July 22, 2021


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Today, the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning presented their Draft report and recommendations for implementing a ban on Embedded Networks in new Residential Apartment Buildings. This report detailed 16 recommendations that outline a drastic shift in the regulation of Embedded Networks here in Victoria, specifically – amendment of the General Exemption Order (GEO), the introduction of a “Local Energy Service” License and the requirement to incorporate clean and renewable energy technology.

The Expert Panel outlined a proposed transitional arrangement that would apply to newly planned networks and provide existing (legacy) Embedded Networks with 12 months to apply and obtain the new Exemption requirement one introduced. This forms part of a revision to the GEO that will require Embedded Networks who have previously been classified as having ˜Deemed Exemptions" to apply for an exemption alongside those within the Registrable Category. Part of this process will include justification on the inclusion of Renewable and/or Clean Energy technologies that contribute to a reduction in Carbon Emissions, and how this benefit will be tangibly passed on to the consumers in their networks.

These revisions are a proposed first step on the way to the introduction of a "Local Energy Service" license that will be issued by the ESC for anyone either supplying or selling electricity within a newly defined private network (Embedded Network). This will apply to any new or planned buildings at the time of introduction, while legacy networks will have up to three years to obtain this license which will, alongside the clean and renewable energy requirements, also require upgrades to metering and infrastructure that will ensure all customers may readily access competition for their energy use with an on-market retailer. During their presentation, the panel indicated that this would likely not replace the existing retail licensing system but provide specifically for those selling and supplying within private networks.

This will have implications for all Embedded Networks, with increased regulatory requirements accompanying the GEO exemption and licensing framework, mirroring much of those required from fully authorised electricity retailers.

ENM Solutions will again be submitting a response to these Draft Recommendations and Report in support of the best outcome for our Embedded Network Operators and their customers.

You can download a copy of the report and recommendations via the links below, along with our initial response to the proposed ban.


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