Jul 28 2016

Q&A on the South Australian energy "crisis"

The South Australian energy “crisis” is dominating public discussion about energy policy. To assist in explaining some of the complexities and addressing some of the misconceptions, the Australian Energy Council today released a short Q&A guide on energy issues in the South Australian market.

Australian Energy Council Chief Executive Matthew Warren said that many of the claims being made on the state of electricity supply in South Australia did not accurately reflect the technical realities of how the electricity system operates.

“Electricity systems and markets are inherently complex,” Mr Warren said, “it is important we have an informed debate about what is happening in South Australia and what needs to be done to fix it.

“The Australian Energy Council’s members supply almost all of the electricity in Australia. They use wind, solar, hydro, coal and gas to do so. We sit at the middle of the system in South Australia, so we prepared this short guide to help inform and elevate this important debate.

“To suggest that renewable energy has nothing to do with the current situation in South Australia is wrong. But at the same time South Australia is not a renewables problem, it’s a planning and policy problem.

“We need to learn how to integrate more clean energy sources like renewables into the grid while maintaining reliability and keeping costs as low as possible.  What is clear from South Australia is that decarbonising our electricity supply is a national issue that requires effective, efficient and durable national climate and energy policy.

“The global electricity industry is learning many valuable lessons from South Australia, some learnt the hard way.  What is important now is that we stop pretending that there isn’t a problem. Instead we need to work on how we can deliver affordable and reliable energy to all Australians, whilst we undertake the transition to a decarbonised energy future.”

The Q&A guide is available here


About the Australian Energy Council

The Council represents 22 major electricity and downstream natural gas businesses operating in competitive wholesale and retail energy markets. These businesses collectively generate the overwhelming majority of electricity in Australia and sell gas and electricity to over 10 million homes and businesses.

Media contact             Carl Kitchen                0401 691342

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