AER National Energy Laws Enforcement and Penalties Framework - Consultation Package

Publication date: Sunday, 17th November 2019.

Following agreement by the COAG Energy Council’s Senior Committee of Officials (SCO) this consultation package is being publicly released, on draft legislative amendments to the Australian Energy Regulator’s (AER) enforcement powers and penalty regime under the National Energy Laws. 

The proposed changes to the National Energy Laws will strengthen the AER’s enforcement regime and provide a stronger deterrent against breaches of the law and rules, particularly where the impacts of a breach are significant or impact the integrity of the electricity market. 

Key changes to be implemented by the draft legislation include:

  1. Adopting a three-tier civil penalty regime in the laws.

  2. Increasing civil and offence penalty levels and indexing them in line with the CPI.

  3. Enhancing the AER’s existing information gathering powers to allow it to compel the provision of oral evidence.

SCO encourages stakeholders to provide feedback, through a written submission, on the draft amendments. Noting the previous consultation processes that have occurred and that the drafting of the Bill and regulations reflects the agreed policy intent of the Energy Council, SCO is primarily interested in comments from stakeholders on drafting omissions or errors, and whether the amendments will raise any practical implementation or transitional concerns.

Once the consultation period closes, submissions will be considered and a final package of draft amendments will go to the Energy Council for approval in 2020.

Please read the attached explanatory note for more detailed information, to assist you with your submission.

Submission close date

06 January 2020

Lodgement details

Email to:

Form of submission


Clearly indicate any confidentiality claims by noting “Confidential” in document name and in the body of the email

Late submissions

Late submissions will not be accepted.


Submissions will be published on the COAG Energy Council’s website, following a review for claims of confidentiality.