A NSW Government website

Review and reform

2022 Energy Savings Scheme Rule Change 

In October 2022, we consulted stakeholders about a series of changes to the Energy Savings Scheme. After consultation, the following changes were adopted: 

  • adding incentives to switch to new fuels such as biofuel, biogas and other renewable sources like solar powered irrigation 
  • a process to allow for non-routine events and adjustments due to unforeseen events such as the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

You can find out more about the changes by reading the: 

During the consultation period, we held 2 webinars to give participants an opportunity to hear about the key changes and ask questions. If you were unable to attend the forum or wish to watch it again, you can access the videos and presentation slides below:

  1. Plenary session - This session explained the proposed changes in more detail. You can watch the video or read the presentation slides to find out more. 
  2. NRE-A Requirements discussion (measurement and verification session) - This session provided more information about non-routine events and adjustments, including a case study. Watch the video or read the presentation slides to find out more. 

2021 Energy Savings Scheme expansion

In September 2021, the NSW Government announced the expansion of the Energy Savings Scheme to cover a wider range of fuel switching activities.  

Increasing the energy savings targets and introducing a wider range of fuel switching activities is expected to save households and businesses choosing to implement energy savings projects an additional $2.4 billion on their bills between 2022 and 2040.  

The NSW Government also published the Energy Security Safeguard position paper. This paper sets out the government’s final position on the design of the Peak Demand Reduction Scheme and reforms to the Energy Savings Scheme. 

The paper also summarised stakeholder feedback received in response to the Energy Security Target and Safeguard consultation paper. The consultation was open from April to June 2020. 

2020 Energy Savings Scheme targets

In December 2020, the NSW Government increased the existing energy savings targets of the ESS for the years 2022 to 2025 and set new targets for the years 2026 to 2050. 

Schedule 5 of the NSW Electricity Supply Act 1995 sets out the new energy savings targets for the scheme. The target will increase by 0.5% each year from 2022, reaching 13% in 2030. The target will then remain at 13% until the end of the scheme in 2050. 

2020 Energy Savings Scheme Statutory Review

In April 2020, the Minister for Energy and Environment released the Energy Savings Scheme Draft Statutory Review and Energy Security Target and Safeguard consultation paper. Submissions closed in May and the Energy Savings Scheme Final Statutory Review Report 2020 was tabled in parliament in June 2020.

2020 Review of lighting methods  

The Energy Savings Scheme has incentivised the uptake of energy efficient lighting in NSW since the scheme’s inception in 2009. Lighting upgrades make up most of energy savings delivered through the scheme to date.  

In mid-2020, the NSW Government commissioned Beletich Associates, Common Capital and Light Naturally to review and update all 3 Energy Savings Scheme deemed lighting methods to reflect the latest market and policy developments, and to provide detailed recommendations on the improved delivery of the lighting upgrades.  

A targeted consultation workshop was held on  9 September 2020 where Beletich Associates, Common Capital and Light Naturally presented their draft findings along with future options for lighting in the ESS.  You can find out more about the lighting reviews through the:

In 2017, the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment commissioned the Lighting Market Impact Evaluation (LMIE) study, which was supported by a quantitative model.  

The evaluation found that the uptake of light-emitting diode (LED) lighting technologies and upgrades in NSW has been brought forward by 7 to 10 years. With LED lighting the norm for new product sales, at current trends LEDs will soon replace most common lighting technologies.  


2015 Energy Savings Scheme review

In 2014 and 2015, the NSW Government carried out a Statutory Review of the ESS and consulted on reforms. The ESS Statutory Review was completed in June 2015 and reforms to the scheme were introduced in October 2015. You can find out more about the review by reading the: