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Queensland Energy Class Action

CS Energy is defending a class action filed by a law firm and funded by corporate backers, which relates to electricity prices. We reject the claims being made and are strongly defending this class action.

CS Energy is committed to complying with all market rules and regulations and we have dedicated substantial resources to ensuring we meet our obligations. Our bidding activity is regulated under the National Electricity Law and the National Electricity Rules by the Australian Energy Regulator.

The Queensland electricity market and customers

As a residential or small business customer, you buy your electricity through a retailer. Your retailer, the company that sends you your electricity bills, manages your energy purchases from the market, and pays the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO).

What you pay your retailer includes the costs of generating and supplying you with electricity and can include:

  • network costs -– building and maintaining all the equipment and infrastructure needed to distribute electricity, such as poles, wires, and meter readers.
  • wholesale costs – this is what your retailer pays for your wholesale electricity
  • environmental/green schemes – contributions to compulsory state and federal government environmental/renewable schemes
  • retail services – what you pay your retailer for their services, such as customer service and metering services.

What role does CS Energy play in the electricity supply chain?

CS Energy provides electricity to some of our state’s largest industries and employers. We operate in the generation and retail sections of the electricity supply chain.

We generate electricity at the power stations that we own and operate and we sell this electricity in the wholesale National Electricity Market. We are also a electricity retailer for large energy users throughout Queensland, such as mines, ports and government.

In South East Queensland we have a retail joint venture (JV) with Alinta Energy to supply electricity to residential and small commercial customers. Since entering the SEQ retail market in 2017, the JV has been recognised for helping to stimulate competition, leading to better price outcomes for consumers regardless of their retailer.

Fast facts about the market

  • There are more than 200 registered participants in the National Electricity Market (NEM), including market generators, transmission network service providers, distribution network service providers, and market customers.
  • The NEM started operating as a wholesale spot market for electricity in December 1998.
  • The NEM consists of about 40,000km of transmission lines and cables and supplies about 200 terawatt-hours of electricity to businesses and households each year.
  • The NEM supplies about 10 million customers.
  • The NEM has a total electricity generating capacity of more than 50,000 MW (2021/22) .
  • The NEM has about 14,000 MW of distributed solar (as of December 2021).

How it works

Generators offer to supply the market with an amount of electricity at a certain price for a specific time period. They can re-submit the amount at any time.

AEMO considers the offers and decides which generators will be used to produce electricity, with the cheapest generator put into operation first. This process is designed to meet everyone’s electricity demands in the most cost-efficient way.

Prices fluctuate in response to supply and demand at any point in time. It’s a dynamic, highly competitive market with more than 100 generators and retailers.

Latest updates

class action faqs


No. We are concerned however that the benefits we return to the Queensland community through the profits we make could potentially be affected by the class action.



The class action was commenced in January 2021. We have filed a defence and are strongly defending the class action. 

We expect this will be a long and complex legal process.

Despite what the law firm bringing the class action has said publicly to its class action members, this case will not be resolved in the short term. The law firm has acknowledged it’s likely this will take between 12 months and five years to resolve.


Litigation funders are investment firms that finance legal claims.

During the federal parliamentary inquiry into litigation funding and class actions in 2020, concerns were raised about the level of funding commissions litigation funders in Australia were paid.

The impact of this has been increasing costs of insurance for businesses and their directors, which puts at risk the ability of businesses to provide jobs and opportunities for Australians.


We are extremely disappointed and concerned by the class action.

We are particularly concerned about some of the promises being made to vulnerable Queensland families by a corporate-backed class action. We’re a Queensland-based company so we live and work in Queensland communities. They’re important to us, to our employees who live there and our families.



The Australian Law Reform Commission reported that the median return to class action members was 51% of the settlement award when corporate backers were funding the action, and 85% of the settlement award when corporate backers were not involved.


CS Energy is a Queensland Government-owned business, so Queenslanders are already bearing the costs of defending against what will be a long and complex case.

Queenslanders would ultimately also bear the costs of any class action pay-out, including from CS Energy profits which are otherwise returned to government to pay for schools, hospitals and roads.