We administer and regulate the Victorian Energy Upgrades (VEU) program in accordance with the Victorian Energy Efficiency Target Act 2007.
VEU program legislation
We administer and regulate the Victorian Energy Upgrades program under these legislative instruments:
- Victorian Energy Efficiency Target Act 2007 (VEET Act)
- Victorian Energy Efficiency Target Amendment Act 2022 (VEET Amendment Act)
- Victorian Energy Efficiency Target Regulations 2018 (VEET regulations)
- Victorian Energy Upgrades Specifications 2018 (VEU specifications)
- Victorian Energy Efficiency Target (Project-Based Activities) Regulations 2017 (PBA regulations)
- Measurement and Verification in Victorian Energy Upgrades - Specifications
- Benchmark Rating in Victorian Energy Upgrades - Specifications
- Victorian Energy Efficiency Target Guidelines (VEET Guidelines)
The VEET Act establishes the Victorian Energy Upgrades program and confers functions and powers on us to administer the program. The primary objectives of the VEET Act are to:
- reduce greenhouse gas emissions
- encourage the efficient use of electricity and gas
- encourage investment, employment and technology development in industries that supply goods and services which reduce the use of electricity and gas by consumers.
The VEET Act commenced on 1 January 2009 and provides for the program to operate to the end of 2030.
VEET Amendment Act
The VEET Amendment Act amends the VEET Act to:
- expand the powers and functions of the commission under the VEET Act
- extend the operation of the VEU program until the end of 2030
- introduce new accreditation requirements
- provide for the granting and administration of accounts for transferring certificates under the VEET Act
- further provide for the internal review, and provide for the external review, of certain decisions made by the commission
- further provide for matters relating to the enforcement of the VEET Act and regulations made under that Act, including by introducing new offences and engaging with the civil penalty requirement regime under the Essential Services Commission Act 2001
- provide for the conduct of compliance audits and assurance audits of accredited persons
- make other miscellaneous and consequential amendments.
These amendments will take effect from 1 November 2023 (unless proclaimed earlier).
The VEET regulations are made under section 75 of the VEET Act. The matters which the regulations provide for include:
- prescribed activities included in the VEU program
- activity requirements
- conditions and circumstances under which a Victorian energy efficiency certificate (VEEC) cannot be created
- requirement for us to maintain a register of products that may be installed for the purposes of undertaking a prescribed activity
- power for the commission to make determinations about certain matters
- the shortfall penalty rate applicable where a relevant entity does not surrender enough certificates to meet their liability under the VEET Act for the relevant year
- premises which are scheduled activity premises for the purposes of the VEU program
- a code of conduct that applies to accredited persons and scheme participants carrying out a regulated action in relation to a prescribed activity, and sets minimum standards of behaviour aimed at protecting consumers.
Victorian Energy Upgrades specifications
The VEU specifications contain the technical requirements for activities prescribed in the VEET regulations. With respect to eligible prescribed activities, it specifies:
- minimum energy efficiency requirements for these activities
- methods and variables required to determine the amount of greenhouse gas equivalent emissions reduced by each activity prescribed in the VEET regulations
- other matters for these activities, where required by the VEET regulations.
Project-based activities (PBA) regulations
The PBA regulations are also made under section 75 of the VEET Act. These regulations prescribe project-based activities as additional prescribed activities, among other matters.
Project-based activities (PBA) measurement and verification specifications
The specifications document Measurement and Verification in the Victorian Energy Upgrades Program is made under regulation 18 of the PBA Regulations.
The ‘measurement and verification method’ is a project-based activities method, under which energy savings are determined using measurements of actual energy consumption made before and after an energy efficiency upgrade.
The purpose of these specifications is to provide for the calculation of greenhouse gas savings (in tonnes) achieved by prescribed activities that are carried out according to the measurement and verification method. The specifications set out the rules for defining the methods and variables to be used when carrying out a prescribed activity using the measurement and verification method.
The Department of Energy, Environment and Climate Action* publication Accounting for COVID-19 under Victorian Energy Upgrades Measurement & Verification Projects describes the procedure that accredited persons must use to account for COVID-19 or other declared states of emergency or disaster when undertaking measurement and verification projects under the VEU program.
*The publication was originally released by the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning in June 2021. Following machinery of government changes taking effect on 1 January 2023, this department is now known as the Department of Energy, Environment and Climate Action.
Project-based activities (PBA) benchmark rating specifications
A further specifications document Benchmark Rating in Victorian Energy Upgrades is also made under regulation 18 of the PBA Regulations.
The ‘benchmark rating method’ is a project-based activities method, under which energy savings are determined using National Australian Built Environment Rating System ratings before and after the energy efficiency upgrade.
The purpose of these specifications is to provide for the calculation of greenhouse gas savings (in tonnes) achieved by prescribed activities that are carried out according to the benchmark rating method. The specifications set out the rules for defining the methods and variables to be used when calculating the abatement of a prescribed activity using the benchmark rating method.
Victorian Energy Efficiency Target Guidelines
The VEET Act empowers the commission to make guidelines about any matter required. The VEET Guidelines originally commenced on 1 January 2009. The current version took effect on 3 June 2019.