Network tariff changes for large electricity users*

*Customers who are on a demand charge

At CitiPower and Powercor, we have introduced a new way of measuring the demand component of network tariffs for large electricity users. From July 2016, we joined other Victorian distribution businesses, using kVA to measure electricity demand.

How was I charged previously?

Previously, kW was used to measure demand for our large electricity users, along with a peak and off peak kWh usage charge.

How am I being charged now?

We have moved from a kW demand charge to a kVA demand charge.

Large electricity users continue to pay a peak and off-peak kWh usage charge.

Why measure demand using kVA?

kVA better reflects the physical capacity and costs of the network required to supply electricity to a site. It also encourages large electricity users to manage their peak kVA demand, improve electrical efficiency and drive down overall electricity costs.

Reducing maximum kVA demand is the most effective way of reducing your electricity bill. One way it can be reduced is by improving your power factor.

kVA vs kW

kVA = apparent power

Reflects the amount of current through electrical infrastructure and determines the capacity of the power lines, cables, switches and transformers needed to supply electricity to a site.

kW = real power

Is the component of apparent power which can be converted into energy. Lighting, heating and machinery motors all convert apparent power to real power at different levels of efficiency. When a site draws power which is not directly used, it is known as reactive power.

What is power factor?


What is power factor?

A power factor is the ratio of real power to apparent power.

A good power factor (close to 1) means you have systems which are more efficient.

A bad power factor means you will have greater apparent power than real power requirements, so we need to supply more electricity for your use.



How do I improve my power factor?

You can improve your power factor by installing power factor correction equipment known as capacitor banks. These work to reduce maximum kVA demand on the electricity network.

If you would like to further explore improving your power factor, please call 1800 770 191