Signalling the arrival of a buyer’s market in the power sector and an intent to save energy, more than 4000 South Australians have signed up a campaign that seeks to dump their electricity provider. This is in lieu of a better provider via a Dutch auction of retailers.
The Big SA Energy Switch campaign, launched on Jan 18, has been getting a fabulous response. The number of consumers, who signed up have already exceeded the company’s target of 10,000. According to One Big Switch campaign director Joel Gibson, two households are signing up every minute. The campaign seeks a group discount for SA households who are paying some of the highest power prices, reports Adelaide Now.
“SA bill payers are signing up in droves and sending a strong message that they’re fed up,’’ he said.
According to Gibson, if this momentum is maintained, South Australians’ power bills will certainly go down. One Big Switch kick started the operation in 2011. It is leveraging the opportunities underlying the Australian market de-regulation for extracting better deals for consumers in terms of energy prices, health insurance and credit cards.
In the fiscal year 2012—13, some 20,000 South Australians signed up to change electricity retailers. Their savings in the energy bills was an average 15.5 percent.
The Dutch auction targets retail electricity companies, which are buying bulk electricity from generators. They then go for the lowest price bidding with the One Big Switch Company to wean away a large number of customers from their competitors by offering better prices.
The campaign’s success was evident in the words of consumer Michael Noack of Goodwood, who expressed his happiness at using the One Big Switch campaign to get a better price. He said he would spread the word through Facebook.
“We hunt around. It is complicated but there are a lot of tools out there to compare electricity prices,’’ he said.
“I haven’t swapped for a while because I was with Alinta … they were one of the cheapest when I went on the comparison websites,” he added.
The Australian Energy Regulator also highlighted the benefits for consumers when they make a choice on their power provider by using the tools for comparison. Those who want to join the campaign can visit www.onebigswitch.com.au/ . It is open until February 5.
Meanwhile, the power infrastructure damage caused by Western Australia’s deadly South West bushfire has been put at AU$ 26 million, reports Sky News. According to Energy Minister Mike Nahan, Western Power now faces an uphill task in rebooting the region’s network. There were 950 poles, 44 transformers and kilometers of overhead conductors which have been destroyed in the blaze.