What if you could generate an income from your onsite standby generation or were paid to stop using electricity?

This is probably not something you were expecting to hear about from your electricity retailer, but then ERM Business Energy isn’t your average retailer. We’re known for our innovative thinking and creative out-of-the box, customer-centric energy solutions.

Our Energy Solutions Demand Response Program rewards businesses that generate energy onsite or reduce their energy consumption when wholesale electricity prices are high.

If your business participates in a Demand Response Program you’ll be on-call to respond to peak energy ‘events’ and paid in return for this demand reduction. You can choose from fixed capacity or spot price share payment options to suit your business situation. We include additional dispatch payments for every ‘event’ to cover extra operational costs like generator fuel.


While the amount of money you’re paid for participating in our Demand Response Program depends on your unique circumstances, these organisations help illustrate the revenue potential.

A major processing plant in Queensland received a payment of just over $90,000 for turning off processes and reducing its demand during a three-hour peak energy ‘event’ in 2015. That’s an hourly rate of $30,000.


Demand Response is worth investigating if you have:

  • Embedded standby generation capacity of at least 250 kW with a response time of less than 10 minutes
  • Ability to curtail or switch off your operational load of at least 250 kW within 10 minutes
  • Ability to sustain standby generation or interrupted load for between two and four hours during an ‘event’
  • Predictable operating patterns and load shapes

We offer a complete end-to-end service, starting with data analysis and desktop evaluation of your energy history to determine your business’s suitability. We check your demand response capability, response times and the configuration of your generation and provide advice on any changes or equipment that may be required to facilitate your participation.

The next step involves a physical site assessment and the development of a Demand Response Agreement, providing details of your participation, pricing and dispatch method. Dispatch options include:

  • Phone call to your operators
  • SMS / email to your operators
  • Remote activation by ERM Business Energy

On execution of the Agreement, we supply and install remote control equipment if required, so you’re ready for implementation. Dispatch communications, operational support and troubleshooting are all part of the service.


When it comes to implementation, as soon as we’re aware of an ‘event’ we’ll notify you or activate your response remotely if this has been previously arranged. We’ll also let you know when the ‘event’ is over, so you can resume normal operations. ‘Event’ lengths are variable as they depend on spot market activity. They can range from 30 minutes to a few hours.

Our Demand Response Program is completely voluntary. Even with an Agreement in place, you have the choice to participate in an ‘event’ or not without penalty. It’s also possible to ‘lock out’ remote start signals if you decide the timing of the ‘event’ isn’t right for your business. Payment, though, is linked to participation.

Contact us to see whether Demand Response should be part of your business’ energy cost-management strategy.

You can also download the brochure to see why Demand Response should be part of an integrated energy management plan.

Download the brochure