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Is minimum demand causing a major headache?

Is minimum demand causing a major headache?

AEMO’s Wholesale Electricity Market ESOO offers insight into the future of the WEM and its potential challenges. It presents a confident picture of generation meeting demand over the forecast period, while on the flipside it singles out the massive uptake of rooftop solar PV for causing a significant near-term issue.

BY Graham Pearson Jun 24 2021
EV policies focus on the destination not the journey

EV policies focus on the destination not the journey

State governments increasingly accept that the uptake of zero emissions vehicles requires their support to create a critical mass, with NSW the latest state to unveil a range of measures to speed up the purchase of ZEVs. The Australia Institute declared the nation's EV policy is becoming a confusing patchwork of policies and regulations, while the Electric Vehicle Council has said they’d like to see a national approach to EV policy.

BY Hamish Fitzsimmons Jun 24 2021
Gas and hydro: Back-up in action

Gas and hydro: Back-up in action

The first quarter of 2021 for the NEM's spot market was notable for its lack of notability. But in a measure of the how the NEM can turn, the Q2 Queensland average price to date is $135.83/MWh, versus $42.64/MWh over Q1. We look at how the market almost always successfully responds to the NEM’s variations, and its reliance on hydro and gas-fired generation to keep the lights on.

BY Ben Skinner & Carol Tran Jun 17 2021
Driving towards EVs: How are we travelling?

Driving towards EVs: How are we travelling?

In its Net Zero by 2050 paper the IEA envisions a world where by 2030 electric cars account for over 60 per cent of car sales, and by 2035, nearly all cars sold globally are electric. AEMO electricity consumption forecasts show where it sees electrification of transport occurring and highlights expected growth in EV usage.

BY Hamish Fitzsimmons Jun 10 2021
Energy challenges highlighted by white paper

Energy challenges highlighted by white paper

The NSW Productivity Commission recently released a white paper, “Rebooting the economy”, which, amongst other things, has highlighted some of the challenges facing the energy sector.

BY Carl Kitchen Jun 10 2021
IEA: Net-zero by 2050 “narrow but still achievable”

IEA: Net-zero by 2050 “narrow but still achievable”

The IEA’s Roadmap for how the global energy sector can reach net-zero by 2050, warns the window for success is “narrow but still achievable”. It lays down recommendations for the type of policy action that is required if the world is to get there, and its blunt realism is confronting reading.

BY Rhys Thomas Jun 03 2021
Fair for who? Victoria's Energy Fairness Plan

Fair for who? Victoria's Energy Fairness Plan

Victoria's Energy Fairness Plan was introduced via press release just days before the 2018 state election. While the Plan was an election commitment, the Victorian Government has not made the case for the alleged benefit the parcel of these reforms will bring energy consumers.

BY Hamish Fitzsimmons May 27 2021
Queensland blackout: Should we let the market run?

Queensland blackout: Should we let the market run?

Following a fire at Callide C Power station on Tuesday 25 May, a series of events resulted in multiple generators disconnecting and 2,300MW of demand being interrupted. This was the most severe event in the NEM since SA's black system of 2016. Like all serious power system incidents, there was a complex chain of issues that will take some time to unpick.

BY Ben Skinner May 27 2021
South Australia: Famine one day, feast the next (but one)

South Australia: Famine one day, feast the next (but one)

South Australia could borrow a slogan from another state based on recent vagaries and challenges thrown up by its energy grid. One day it experienced spot prices exceeding $5000/MWh six times between 6pm and midnight and two days later it was reporting near-record minimum demand, which required the step of curtailing rooftop solar to ensure grid stability.

BY Carl Kitchen May 20 2021
Getting the mail on solar installations

Getting the mail on solar installations

The Australian Energy Council has analysed the nation's top suburbs for solar installations for the first quarter of 2021. And with 20 years of data collected by the Clean Energy Regulator, we also take a look at how the data compares to historical uptake.

BY AEC May 13 2021
Will network operator batteries hurt competition?

Will network operator batteries hurt competition?

Australia is grappling with the rapid change in how and when electricity is generated and consumed. In Western Australia, recent changes to the Electricity Networks Access Code allow expansion of the role of the network operator. Oakley Greenwood has considered what the amendments mean for competition in the Wholesale Electricity Market.

BY Graham Pearson May 13 2021
Winter energy bills: Avoid a shock

Winter energy bills: Avoid a shock

With colder weather comes an increase in electricity and gas use. The AEC has published analysis of average electricity and gas costs by region using the latest energy consumption data. It shows seasonal breakdowns of energy use for each major network, as well as state by state average gas and electricity costs. It also offers simple tips on how people can save on their bills.

BY Hamish Fitzsimmons Apr 29 2021
Hydrogen for generation

Hydrogen for generation

Hydrogen is currently enjoying extraordinary political and business momentum, with the number of policies, national plans and projects growing. With its lack of carbon emissions, there is momentum for its use in generation - but some challenges still remain.

BY Carl Kitchen Apr 29 2021
Texan energy crisis: Lessons for Australian electricity markets

Texan energy crisis: Lessons for Australian electricity markets

In February Texas endured a winter storm that dragged temperatures well below freezing. Electricity generation plant and gas infrastructure proved unprepared for these temperatures and around a third of the state’s effective capacity went offline for some or all of this period, just as demand was spiking to a new winter record.

New survey shows shifts in consumer sentiment

New survey shows shifts in consumer sentiment

The latest in a series of surveys on the experience of consumers during the COVID-19 pandemic has provided a snapshot of the performance of retailers, as well as the level of concern among consumers about managing their power bills.

BY Carl Kitchen Apr 15 2021
Coal vs 100% renewables: The wrong debate?

Coal vs 100% renewables: The wrong debate?

A new report released this week tackles the question of “what next?” following the retirement of the National Electricity Market’s existing coal-fired power stations. And it has a simple message: those arguing for a continuation of coal-fired generation are wrong and those mounting the case for 100 per cent renewables are also wrong.

BY AEC Apr 15 2021
The retail regulatory framework: Still fit for purpose?

The retail regulatory framework: Still fit for purpose?

During the height of COVID-19, Australian retailers were concerned that the impacts of government interventions might unintentionally impact the ability of retailers to meet their upstream obligations. The impacts on retailers of providing additional protections – on top of the already notable consumer protections in place - and the longer-term debt implications for customers remained a concern.

BY Ben Barnes Apr 08 2021
A changing of the guard: Gas generation projections

A changing of the guard: Gas generation projections

The focus around AEMO’s latest assessment of gas supplies for eastern Australia was on its improved outlook. One change in its expectations for gas demand flows from the potential of gas-fired generation in the National Electricity Market. AEMO expects gas-fired generation demand to become more “peaky” and to switch to peaking in winter instead of summer.

BY Carl Kitchen Apr 01 2021
Every step counts: China’s marathon journey to become net-zero

Every step counts: China’s marathon journey to become net-zero

In 1971, when asked to assess the influence of the French Revolution, Chinese Premier Zhou Enlai famously remarked that it is ‘too early to say’. So it is not surprising that after President Xi announced China’s aim to be net-zero by 2060, some commentators framed it as ‘the start of a marathon, not a sprint’. But is this assessment fair?

BY Rhys Thomas Apr 01 2021
New US modelling points to solar

New US modelling points to solar

New modelling is behind an assessment that finds renewable generation is likely to account for as much as 60 per cent of new capacity in the US grid in coming decades.

BY AEC Mar 25 2021
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