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Year in review: Some hits, some misses

Year in review: Some hits, some misses

It was another year of significant developments in the energy sector ranging from carbon emission commitments from both the Federal Government and Opposition, to the start of 5 minute settlements and Victoria's new tougher requirements for retailers.

BY Carl Kitchen Dec 09 2021
Renewables go from strength to strength

Renewables go from strength to strength

The Clean Energy Regulator's latest assessment of the carbon market has underscored the fact that renewables are going from strength to strength.

BY Australian Energy Council Dec 09 2021
Energy preferences: What drives consumers?

Energy preferences: What drives consumers?

Victoria’s Essential Services Commission has released its latest Victorian Energy Market Report which included a focus on a “striking consumer preference” for large energy retailers. In doing so it sought to unpick customer motivations in choosing their provider.

BY Carl Kitchen Dec 02 2021
Finding a better energy deal: It's easy to switch

Finding a better energy deal: It's easy to switch

Engaging with the retail market is remarkably easy, and for people with a smart meter on the eastern seaboard of Australia, choosing a new electricity retail offer can be a simple choice.

BY Ben Barnes Nov 25 2021
Electricity price trends: Breaking down the costs

Electricity price trends: Breaking down the costs

The AEMC’s residential electricity price trends report shows the ongoing fall in power prices for households. We take a look at the report, what’s behind the price reductions, and break down costs across the states.

BY Carl Kitchen Nov 25 2021
Green steel deal

Green steel deal

With the world’s eyes on COP26, Australia may be looking in the wrong direction for the next major step on decarbonisation. Bilateral trade pacts centred around a US-EU alliance could be the way forward and may give Australia pause for thought on its own approach; but the picture may be more complicated.

Are EVs an election battleground?

Are EVs an election battleground?

The Prime Minister Scott Morrison recently announced the Federal Government’s ‘Future Fuels and Vehicles Strategy’, which commits to spending $250 million on electric vehicle charging infrastructure as part of the push to net zero by 2050.

BY Hamish Fitzsimmons Nov 11 2021
New NEM records set

New NEM records set

New records for negative and zero price periods in the NEM continue to be set. AEMO’s most recent Quarterly Energy Dynamics report shows records were set in all regions, with negative and zero prices across the NEM occurring 16 per cent of the time - more than double the previous record set in the last quarter of 2020.

BY Carl Kitchen Nov 04 2021
Electricity does heavy lifting on emissions reductions

Electricity does heavy lifting on emissions reductions

The Federal Government has unveiled its net zero emissions by 2050 target and projections for economy-wide emissions. The projections show the heavy lifting that's occurred from the electricity sector and flags the continued leading role the sector will play in reducing the country’s greenhouse gas output. But it also shows more needs to be done by other sectors to reach its 2050 target.

BY Carl Kitchen Oct 28 2021
Critical minerals and renewables: The supply challenges

Critical minerals and renewables: The supply challenges

The IEA's World Energy Outlook 2021 report is a crystal ball look at emerging trends and their potential impact on how energy systems evolve. While most of the focus is on the total share of energy markets by generation and fuel type, the report also carries insights into emerging energy security risks as the world moves to lower emissions grids - which it notes could be on a “bumpy” road.

BY Australian Energy Council Oct 28 2021
Is it time for a full review of WA’s Reserve Capacity Mechanism?

Is it time for a full review of WA’s Reserve Capacity Mechanism?

Reform has been a constant in WA's Wholesale Electricity Market in recent years. The Energy Transformation Strategy was established in 2019 to ensure power system reliability and security. Fast forward, and the same issues that led to that work have amplified, and we now have Stage 2. We look at what it means for the Reserve Capacity Mechanism and generators in the SWIS.

BY Graham Pearson Oct 21 2021
Emission targets: The state of play

Emission targets: The state of play

The Federal Cabinet recently met to consider the Government’s plan for a net zero emissions by 2050 target. This has proved challenging for the Coalition partners. The push for stronger interim targets has emerged in the lead up to the Glasgow Climate Summit and has been reinforced by other countries increasing their commitments. We look at some of the targets that have been set both domestically and internationally.

BY Australian Energy Council Oct 14 2021
Nuclear debate resurfaces

Nuclear debate resurfaces

Debate about Australia’s national security needs and commitment to nuclear submarines has led to renewed advocacy for a domestic nuclear power industry. The question of nuclear power has previously been formally canvassed. While it's sensible to keep technology options open through a technology neutral approach, nuclear generation has major impediments to its introduction in Australia. We look at some of the challenges.

BY Carl Kitchen Oct 14 2021
Electrification plan: “Ambitious but realistic”?

Electrification plan: “Ambitious but realistic”?

There’s been plenty of media attention around claims the average Australian household could save $5000 annually on their energy and vehicle costs by 2030 and up to $6000 by 2035 through greater electrification. But what is the basis for this claim? And what would have to happen for this to occur?

BY Carl Kitchen Oct 07 2021
Five-minute settlement starts

Five-minute settlement starts

A momentous change in the National Electricity Market occurs at midnight. Energy will no longer be settled in 30-minute slices, instead each five-minute interval will be settled against its own dispatch price. Sound simple? Conceptually perhaps. But hundreds of millions of dollars were invested to make it happen and it’s affected all parts of the industry.

BY Ben Skinner & Ben Barnes Sep 30 2021
UK’s winter of discontent

UK’s winter of discontent

Reports of the UK’s energy crisis reads more like something from dystopian fiction: spiralling gas prices, wholesale power price spikes, the collapse of energy retailers, industrial plants having to curtail operations and concerns about energy costs to homes as the UK enters winter. So how did it get to this?

BY Carl Kitchen Sep 30 2021
Eurovision: Would Germany’s coal exit law be a hit in Australia?

Eurovision: Would Germany’s coal exit law be a hit in Australia?

As the world head towards Glasgow, countries are being asked to review their level of climate ambition and whether they’re on track to get there. Well known for its coal use, Germany has developed a formal mechanism that will see all coal-fired generation phased out by 2038. So what, if anything, can Australia learn?

BY Rhys Thomas Sep 23 2021
Offshore framework to bring new swell?

Offshore framework to bring new swell?

The Federal Government’s new legislation to clarify offshore energy developments, was greeted with suggestions it would prompt a rush of offshore wind farms around our coastline. Offshore wind farms typically take 6-10 years to develop and build. Currently many of these projects are in pre-feasibility stage.

BY Carl Kitchen Sep 16 2021
Is Orca a new carbon predator?

Is Orca a new carbon predator?

The Federal Government has broadened the Australian Renewable Energy Agency’s remit to support technologies to address carbon emissions, including carbon capture and storage. Last week the agency’s new investment plan was released, and at the same time a new facility began operating using novel carbon capture technology.

BY Australian Energy Council Sep 16 2021
Greenwashing: Don’t get taken to the cleaners

Greenwashing: Don’t get taken to the cleaners

As the world transitions to a cleaner energy future, many high-profile companies have pledged to reduce their emissions and align themselves with a net-zero future. Making a pledge is not the same as meeting a pledge, and this can give rise to claims of greenwashing. What does the law say about greenwashing? And what does it mean for the energy transition?

BY Rhys Thomas Sep 09 2021
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