Right now in Australia, power companies such as AGL, Origin and Energy Australia are all investing their money in coal seam gas mining and unconventional gas fracking. However, you don’t have to get your power from these suppliers!
There are other energy retailers who provide low cost alternatives and are stronger supporters of renewable energy. Switching to one of these will mean you're supporting a company who invests in renewable energy sources.
For a full rundown on the environmental performance of electricity retailers selling electricity to Australian households check out the Green Electricity Guide.
Here are some of the choices if you want to select the best energy options in Australia:
Australia's first community-owned renewable energy retailer, Enova is based in north east NSW. Enova supports the generation of new renewable energy in the local community with the aim of eventually supplying all customers with power from local renewable generation. Offers attractive buy-back rates (feed-in tariffs) to encourage more households and businesses to invest in solar technologies and reinvests 50% of profits into its not-for-profit arm, Enova Community Ltd.
Available on the Essential Energy network – in most country areas of NSW.
A 100% Australian owned company and social enterprise that aims to deliver a fairer model of energy provision and empower communities to set up and earn money from their own local energy plan. Invests profits back into the development of new, local renewable energy sources and also provides support for charities.
Available in NSW and SE Queensland.
Melbourne-based Australian retail arm of New Zealand-based public company, Meridian Energy. Meridian owns two wind farms in Australia which generate more energy than Powershop currently sells to customers.
Available in Victoria, NSW and SE Queensland.
Relatively small, privately owned, Melbourne-based retailer. Diamond owns two mid-scale biogas power plants and is involved with other renewable projects.
Available in Victoria, NSW, SE Queensland and South Australia.
Owned by Hydro Tasmania, which is Australia’s largest owner of renewable energy generation. As well as hydro power stations, Hydro Tasmania owns one large gas peaking plant, has minority shareholdings in three wind farms and is building mostly renewable energy offgrid power systems on King and Flinders Islands to reduce their reliance on diesel generators.
Available in NSW, Victoria and South Australia.
Owned by Snowy Hydro, which is in turn owned by the NSW, Victorian and Commonwealth governments.The parent company owns large hydro power stations but also two gas peaking plants.
Available in in Victoria, South Australia and NSW.
Now owned by Snowy Hydro, so (like Red Energy) it is effectively owned by the NSW, Victorian and Commonwealth governments.The parent company owns large hydro power stations but also two gas peaking plants.
Available in Queensland, NSW, Victoria and South Australia.
Wholly owned by the Tasmanian Government, and is the only retailer in that state. Does not own any power stations. Solar export price(s) slightly better than state average(s) and provides equitable solar offers. Large proportion of GreenPower customers on 100% GreenPower equivalent.
Available in Tasmania.
For more detailed information about Australian electricity suppliers check out the Green Electricity Guide.