DER Register Implementation

Introducing Australia's world-first DER Register

By 1 March 2020, Australia’s first DER Register will launch. The DER Register is a database of information about DER devices that is foundational to AEMO’s Distributed Energy Resources (DER) Program.

AEMO is dedicated to sustaining a reliable, secure and affordable energy supply for all Australians. Given the rapid uptake of small-scale energy generation devices (such as rooftop solar PV), AEMO needs visibility over these DER devices to better manage the electricity grid and ensure that consumer-led investments in DER devices deliver their expected value.

The DER Register stores information about a DER device installed on-site at a residential or business location. This information will be requested by Network Services Providers (or network operators) from qualified electrical contractors and solar installers at the time of the DER installation.

Helpful information for DER installers and other stakeholders

Seminars for DER installers

AEMO is involved in industry events to support DER Register implementation and provide DER integration updates. Stakeholders should contact their local distribution network service provider and/or peak body for additional event information.

12 and 13 November 2019 – Technical workshops for Victorian Electrical contractors and solar installers: Introducing the DER Register (Australia’s DER database). 

19 November 2019 – ACT: Canberra

29 November 2019 – NSW: Chullora

Important information for DER installers and other stakeholders

The following links will provide stakeholders with the latest reference material for the project. 

Important Updates

The full implementation of the DER Register has been delayed. As a result the collection of information on newly installed DER has also been delayed.

As always, DER installers and contractors should seek a connection approval from their local network service provider, which will also provide advice on when and how to provide information to the DER Register system.

Stakeholder forums

Following extensive stakeholder consultation, including a series of working groups, AEMO published its final determination on the DER Register Information Guidelines and Final Report on 31 May 2019. 

Key documents and background can be found on our project consultation page.

Further details, including scheduled meeting dates and meeting papers can be found under Industry forums and working groups.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What are the benefits of creating a DERs register?

    To date there is no comprehensive database that maps the make-up of the DER assets installed in site in homes and businesses across Australia. When there is not a lot of DER installed this is not an issue as it is not material compared to the whole grid. But in Australia DER such as roofto solar has been so successful that it is starting to have a significant influence, and AEMO needs to plan and operate the grid with this in mind.

    The data set that AEMO will be collecting after 1 December 2019 will enable us to:

    • Forecast, plan and operate the grid more efficiently, ensuring the system and market can deliver energy at an efficient price for all customers,
    • Be more prepared for major disruptions to the system with a greater understanding of how DER assets will behave during these events,
    • Prepare the grid for major innovations with DER such as virtual power plants, and enabling customers to consider and participate in new markets with their DER, and
    • Allow networks to make better informed decisions about network investment options in the future as demand changes and DER increases.

    While the DER Register is designed with Australia’s east coast electricity market in mind, AEMO is also involved with key stakeholders to develop a Western Australian solution that can support the same benefits in the South West Interconnected System (SWIS).

     

  • Why does AEMO need a record of DERs installed at my home or business?

    AEMO must operate the power grid and market in real time, 365 days a year, 24 hours a day. To do this we need to have a good understanding of how the grid will react when things don’t go to plan, like when a storm shuts down a very large transmission line.

    Australian residents and business owners are charging ahead with rooftop solar PV installations and household batteries are becoming more common. However, we don't have a comprehensive database of these electricity generation and storage assets.

    At times the electricity grid and AEMO are more dependent on these assets than ever before. As this continues more opportunities will be available for consumers to become active participants in the energy market and for this to reduce costs overall. To ensure AEMO can plan for and operate a high-DER power grid that delivers these benefits we need to have a very good understanding of the DER devices deployed across all networks.

  • Will the DER Register affect a customer’s solar or battery subsidy?

    AEMO does not have an active role in the allocation of subsidies from state and federal governments. However, some subsidy schemes may rely on AEMO’s receipt confirming that the installation has been recorded in the DER Register. Customers should ask their qualified contractor or DER installer to ensure this process is completed.

  • Is AEMO collecting personal information about me or other customers for the DER Register?

    No. AEMO takes the privacy and security of your information very seriously. Protecting privacy and security form the foundations of every system we develop and build, including the DER Register.

    The DER Register contains technical information about small generating and storage systems. Collecting this information does not require AEMO to collect personal information about customers or owners of these systems.

    The collection systems that will support the DER Register will collect some information about contractors and installers involved in the DER installation process as this is required to manage the integrity of data provision. This information will be collected in line with appropriate privacy policies.

  • Is the DER Register going to be accessible to all stakeholders?

    AEMO will be developing reports and a dashboard based on the data held in the DER Register, which will be publicly available on AEMO’s website. AEMO’s working groups will discuss the design of these reports prior to implementation, and stakeholders can email us with ideas to consider for this.

  • Frequently asked questions from DER installers

    What is changing with the new DER Register?

    From 1 March 2020, regulatory requirement will mandate NSPs provide more data than has traditionally been collected for small generating or battery systems. This data will have to be provided to AEMO’s DER Register within 20 days of the system commissioning or activation.

    This information will be collected as a part of current grid connection approval processes managed by NSPs and installers either via NSP systems or smart phone applications.

    Some NSPs may commence collecting the information early. AEMO recommends checking with the NSP to understand the requirements.

    What does this mean for installers?

    The new regulations require networks to collect up to 13 additional pieces of information about DER equipment installed on site. This includes inverter manufacturer, model and serial numbers. Depending on which State/Territory you are working in, this information can be provided:

    • directly to the NSP via their systems, or
    • via mobile applications, or
    • directly into AEMO’s portal.

    The DER Register system is designed to draw information from available data sets, such as the Clean Energy Council’s approved product databases, to streamline data provision. Installers will be asked to confirm this information, rather than enter it.

    AEMO has been working with solar installer application developers to integrate DER data collection as far as possible with the existing information collection systems in place for the Clean Energy Regulator.

    How will I get information about what I have to do?

    Leading up to implementation on 1 March 2020, AEMO is working with NSPs and peak bodies to ensure a smooth transition to the new requirements. 

    AEMO will also make information and training available through our website and installer log-in systems, and ensure the right material is available to support NSPs.

    When do I need to start providing information for the DER Register?

    AEMO is undertaking rigorous testing with NSPs and application providers. As testing proceeds some NSPs may commence collecting data early on, so when you apply for a new connection we recommend checking with the NSP for information about when and how to start providing information for the DER Register.

    Are NSPs going to make it harder to connect to the grid?

    No. The DER Register should not make it harder to connect DER to the grid. We are aware that connection processes can differ between NSPs. We have paid close attention to these existing connection processes around Australia with the aim to integrate the DER Register collection system as seamlessly as possible.

    Does the DER Register change the connection process for customers when they get solar installed?

    No. Customers should not be expected to do anything for the DER Register as they will be able to rely on their local NSP and qualified contractors and DER installers to provide the information.

    AEMO will generate a receipt confirming that a customer's installation has been registered in the system. This should occur within 20 business days of the installation being commissioned. Customers should ensure that their qualified DER installer provides them with this receipt following the completion of the system.

  • Frequently asked questions from Network Service Providers

    How will AEMO make information available so we can prepare for implementation?

    This website will be the primary source for NSPs to access detail to support their effort to prepare for implementation of the DER Register. Stakeholders can also register for email updates and to keep informed by emailing AEMO at DERregister@aemo.com.au.

    When will AEMO make information available for NSPs?

    The above timetable and meeting schedule provides this information.

    How should we make information available to DER installers?

    We will provide information to NSPs to support their communications with DER installers through existing channels. This will be available for download from this website.

    AEMO will similarly be using available channels to communicate the change needed to support the DER Register.

    What happens when an installer raises an issue with the DER Register?

    Information collection for the DER Register will need to be integrated as a part of existing connection processes. Issues raised about data provision to this process need to be managed by the NSP, as they are now. AEMO will manage issues in relation to the DER Register system through our existing support arrangements.

    Why does the DER Register not include data on demand side participation?

    AEMO collects information from Registered Participants on demand that participates in demand response. While this data has some similarities, it serves a different purpose so has not yet been integrated with the DER Register. AEMO will be exploring opportunities for this integration following the implementation of the DER Register.

  • Frequently asked questions from Electricity Retailers

    What are our obligations to provide information to the DER Register?

    The National Electricity Rules do not require retailers to provide information to the DER Register. However, retailers that have DER installers are expected to provide information within the NSP’s DER connection processes.

    Does the DER Register impact changes to meter upgrades for DER?

    The information for the DER register relates to the connection processes, but not market systems. Metering changes will not be impacted by its implementation.

    Is the DER Register going to be accessible to retailers?

    The DER Register is a requirement under the National Electricity Rules, which specifies that the information it holds must be made available to some stakeholders, including NSP and emergency services.

    Under the rules, AEMO is required to develop reports based on the data held in the DER Register. These reports will be publicly available on AEMO’s website. AEMO’s working groups will discuss the design of these reports prior to implementation.

    Why does the DER Register not include data on demand side participation?

    AEMO collects information from Registered Participants on demand that participates in demand response. While this data has some similarities, it serves a different purpose so has not yet been integrated with the DER Register. AEMO will be exploring opportunities for this integration following the implementation of the DER Register.

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