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Term Meaning
accumulation meters Electricity meters that only measure total electrical energy use (kWh, MWh) between meter readings, and do not record the dates and times when the electricity flows occur
advanced metering infrastructure A specific form of smart metering capable of (among other things): recording of electrical energy imported or exported from a metering point by half hour trading interval; remote disconnection and reconnection; load control; and remote detection of loss of supply1
aged and veterans pensioners Includes Pensioner Concession Card holders and Department of Veterans' Affairs Gold Card holders.
basic community profile The basic community profile is a file made available by the Australian Bureau of Statistics which provides detailed census data for small areas (the smallest of which are CCDs). They contain information that includes age, income, education and housing costs
block tariff Pricing structures that include either an incline or decline in price per kWh beyond a given threshold of electricity use. Pricing structures which increase past a threshold of electricity use are termed 'inclining block tariffs' where those which decrease are termed 'declining block tariffs'
census collection district A geographic identifier comprising approximately 200 to 250 households developed by the Australian Bureau of Statistics that allows relatively detailed, yet anonymous, analysis of census-type information
controlled load Customer appliances that are connected to a dedicated circuit and are subject to separate metering of energy use – usually water and space heating. The relevant controlled load would only be energised ¯"ON" at restricted times of day
critical peak pricing Under critical peak pricing, electricity prices are increased sharply for a limited duration at times when demand needs to be reduced
demand A measure of the amount of electricity either generated or used at any given instant of time. The units of measure include kilowatts, megawatts and gigawatts
dual element meter A meter that separately records electricity usage at one location for 1) controlled loads; and 2) other circuits
elasticity The ratio of the percentage change in one variable to the percentage change in another variable
electricity distribution business Electricity distribution businesses manage the distribution of electricity through the 'poles and wires' network. Electricity distribution businesses have been charged with implementing AMI  
Term Meaning
electricity retail business The companies that manage consumer's electricity accounts and who consumers' ultimately purchase their electricity from. Retailers purchase electricity in bulk from the wholesale market and 'rent' distribution infrastructure to deliver this electricity to consumers
energy A measure of the volume of electricity used or generated over a period of time. The units of measure include kilowatt hours, megawatt hours and gigawatt hours.
flat rate tariff Electricity tariffs with a fixed price for electricity use that neither varies according to the time of use nor according the quantity used
full retail competition A market within which all consumers, including the smallest of energy users, are able to choose their retailer
geocode Assigning some geographic identifier (other than street address) to a data record
manually read interval meter Early technology interval meters with limited functionality and which are generally read via a manually inserted probe
multivariate adaptive regression splines A form of non-parametric regression technique that allows for the modelling of non-linearities and interactions in a regression
national metering identifier A unique identifier of each registered metering point
reference customer Average of all customers in any one of the following groups:
  • Residential single element metered customers
  • Residential dual element metered customers
  • SME single element metered customers
  • SME dual element metered customers
single element meter A meter that records all electricity usage at one location without distinguishing between types of load
smart metering A generic term to identify a meter with remote communication ability that can undertake more functions that merely interval metering – see also ¯ "advanced metering infrastructure (AMI)"
time of use tariff Time of use pricing structure in which the price paid for electricity is dependent on the time at which it is used
VF group Any cohort of households (businesses) that:
  • exceeds the threshold level of spending on the electricity bill – i.e. a vulnerable customer
  • exhibits a relevant social factor
vulnerability factor A social factor determined to be correlated with spending a high proportion of income (or business turnover) on the electricity bill


1 The full functionality of AMI metering is specified in DPI, Minimum AMI Functionality Specification (Victoria), Release 1.1, September 2008. Accessed online(PDF, 707.0 KB) , last accessed 5 July 2011.

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Page last updated: 09/06/17