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Simply Energy - "Gas Market Congestion" charge

Discussion in 'The Pub' started by parko, Nov 14, 2007.

  1. Hi All,

    Be aware that Simply Energy a gas retailer for SA & Vic are slugging their customers with a "Gas Market Congestion" charge. This charge is being applied to their customer bills to make up their costs to supply gas "due to the unprecedented demand for gas during the 2007 winter period...". Now if the surcharge was fairly small then I would understand, but it's another 25% of what would have been my original costs!

    Simply put... Simply Energy along with all other gas retailers were slugged by the state gas supplier VENCorp for the "extra" gas that had to be injected in to the gas pipeline to meet winter demand and Simply Energy are passing the charge on to the customer.

    What Simply Energy don't tell you is that apparently all other gas retailers are absorbing the charge. Check out the article on The Age newspaper website http://www.theage.com.au/news/Busin...r-gas-surcharge/2007/11/08/1194329355129.html.

    The Essential Services Commission is investigating the surcharge and a result will be avaliable in 1 or 2 weeks. Contact details avaliable here at http://www.esc.vic.gov.au/public/About+ESC/Contact+Us.htm.

    If you are with Simply Energy I encourage you to ring them on their hotline 1800 009 146 and demand that the charge be removed or else you'll simply change providers. I did and they refused, they did though defer my payment of the surcharge to the 12/12/2007 so the result of the ESC will be known by then (whether I'll be forced to pay the charge or not). I made sure I that I identified myself and my account and stated that I wanted the charge removed or credited to my Simply Energy electricity bill. They did offer me a 25% discount, but other retailers are providing their customers with a 100% discount, so as far as I'm concerned, that is not good enough.

    So in summary, if you are a Simply Energy gas customer:

    1. Ring Simply Energy and complain about the "gas market congestion" charge;
    2. Threaten to change retailers. If they don't drop the charge or in some way credit your future bill(s);
    3. If they don't budge, ask them for a discount of the "gas market congestion" charge, they offered me a 25% discount;
    4. If they don't budge, tell them you want to defer payment of the "gas market congestion" charge to a later date. (This is so you can wait on the decision of the ESC);
    5. If the result of the ESC investigation allows them to slug you with the charge, pay up (minus 25%) and change providers (It's what I'll be doing...)

    If enough people do this then hopfully they'll have to budge. If not then they will simply lose customers...

    Please pass this on far a wide...

  2. Huh? Did I miss winter?? My central heating didn't get that much of a work out this winter... :?
  3. This is annoying, alright. I work for the company that owns SE. I get a 12 percent staff discount on gas and electricity (and I get to salary sacrifice my power bill), so I'm a bit reluctant to swap providers. However, we'll be raising this at union level, hopefully. If we can get a significant number of employees pressuring SE over this, maybe something will happen. Otherwise, it'll be up to the consumers to protest it.
  4. Just wondering mjt57, do you happen to know if employees of SE got hit with the charge?
  5. Yep. Mine was around $18.