ACT Climate Change Minister Shane Rattenbury has ordered an audit into Evoenergy's reporting of data about the territory's feed-in tariff scheme, amid concerns about the accuracy and reliability of the data.
The energy distributor will have to pay the costs of auditors going over its past four years of annual reporting on the scheme to the ACT government, data the government uses to measure the scheme's success.
Among the data distributors are required to be reported are the costs of the scheme, are premium rates, installed generation capacity, suburb-level data on where small scale [mostly rooftop solar panels] generators are and reimbursement payments to energy retailer ActewAGL.
Mr Rattenbury said he had ordered the audit to ensure the ongoing efficiency of the scheme, as it had been four years since it began, and the audit would ensure the reported data was as accurate and complete as possible.
He said it would also ensure Evoenergy's information management and reporting processes were robust, as previous annual reports had required "periodic adjustment to correct and update reported data".
"We’ll continue to work with Evoenergy to improve data quality and reporting, as the audit will identify any information management and reporting system improvements that could be made.”
Regulatory documents related to the audit show it the data provided by the electricity distributor was "accurate, reliable and timely".
While the full terms of reference for the audit have not yet been decided, it will also include the methods the distributor uses to gather and store the relevant data and assess its accuracy from 2014-15 to 2017-18.
Mr Rattenbury said the directorate was also currently reviewing the laws behind the scheme, which were passed in 2008, and the audit gave them a chance to inform any potential improvements.
“I have chosen to undertake this audit to ensure that the reported data is as accurate and complete as possible, and to ensure that Evoenergy’s information management and reporting processes are robust," he said.
“The audit will ensure that the scheme continues to deliver for ACT consumers and provides the community with regular, accurate reports on the scheme’s progress and its contribution to the ACT’s energy supply.”
"All programs benefit from periodic evaluation to ensure processes are robust and data collection is accurate."
An Evoenergy spokeswoman said, as a regulated business, the distributor often participated in external audits conducted by both national and territory regulators, and well as internal audits to ensure data provided was accurate, reliable and timely.
But the company did not respond to questions about the specific accuracy problems that had led it to revise incorrect data reported to regulators.
"This also is important as we identify opportunities to continually improve business and operations processes," she said.
"The ACT Government is overseeing the audit process and is responsible for selecting an independent auditor, at which point the audit will commence."
Auditors are expected to report back to Mr Rattenbury on their findings by the end of June this year.