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‘Worst pressure’ energy supply over

by Anthony L. Gonzalez

The worst pressures on the energy grid have passed, but significant pressures remain, said Energy Secretary Chris Bowen.

Mr. Bowen said the market regulator and operator have been working to avoid blackouts or the need for load shedding.

“We think we have weathered the worst of the pressures on the energy system, but the national energy market continues to function under pressure,” he said Monday.

“Nevertheless, we are in a situation where more generations have come on board.”

Mr. Bowen said the government would work with the Energy Security Board on the proposed capacity mechanism to ensure energy reliability during the transition to renewables.

'Worst pressure' energy supply over

The council has recommended gas and coal-fired generators as a regular part of the energy mix, with renewable energy and storage gradually taking over the national grid. That could mean paying the generators for a reliable power supply rather than just the energy they produce.

It came as the consumer watchdog warned that power prices in Australia had risen fivefold in June, and another small provider urged customers to look for another retailer.

Australian Competition and Consumer Commission chair Gina Cass-Gottlieb said the watchdog was actively monitoring energy companies to ensure they were not acting against consumer interests and withholding supply or retail prices above the safety net of the consumer. Market determined.

“The market is changing fast, so stay tuned for your plan and the prices you pay,” said Ms. Cass-Gottlieb.

“Finding another plan can also be harder as some retailers aren’t accepting new customers. Nevertheless, it’s important to make sure customers shop around to get the best deal they can afford. Available to them.”

In another development, retailer Electricityinabox urged its customers to go elsewhere. Chief executive Morgan Duncan said “only the lazy or crazy would stay with his company,” with a rate set to rise 95 percent on July 1.

“We need you to switch electricity supplier. The sooner you do that, the more likely you are to find a good deal,” he says in a customer letter.

“Other retailers have long ago sourced energy at a much lower cost and can still offer you a hot deal. They may run out of time and their spare capacity for customers.”

NSW-based Electricityinabox is just the latest of the small retailers urging its customers to leave after ReAmped followed providers LPE, Discover Energy, and Weston in the same move nearly three weeks ago. Other smaller providers have stopped signing up new customers.

Making the transition

Insuring coal and gas companies by including them in a proposed capacity mechanism would not affect the country’s transition to renewable energy, said ESB chair Anna Collyer.

She said that extending the life of coal and gas-fired power plants was not the board’s intention.

“We have several principles, one of which is to ensure continued emissions reduction,” she told ABC.

“We want to make sure this can happen, and part of it is to get the new assets in the system and get the right mix of assets.”

Mr. Bowen said the capacity mechanism was consistent with the emissions reduction trajectory, supporting the development and transition to renewables.

“It will complement, not contradict, our emissions reduction target,” he said.

“It will provide that underpinning” [of power generators], so we can ensure the system remains reliable during this massive transformation.”

According to the ESB chairman, a separation of energy and capacity markets used abroad could also be applied before the mechanism evolves into the future with changing circumstances.

Victorian Prime Minister Daniel Andrews said all East Coast states and territories that comprise the national energy market had their own energy mix but would work towards renewable energy.

“The future revolves around renewable energy sources, be it wind or solar or battery storage, especially when it’s sturdier and converted to synchronous base load energy,” he said.

“At the same time, however, I am the first to recognize that coal and, to a lesser extent, gas is still part of our mix today and even … until 2025.”

Mr. Andrews said that as coal and gas companies continued to come to the Victorian government seeking help, the sector could not be completely exited despite lagging economic viability.

“They cannot get financing for maintenance. However, we can’t let them run to the exits and leave us without the baseline we need,” he said.

“But the time has come to a stop talking about transition and go ahead and make it.”

Victorian Energy Secretary Lily D’Ambrosio said: “We have always been clear that a capacity market in Victoria would pay for zero-emission technologies and not fossil fuels”.

NSW Energy Secretary Matt Kean said his state must balance its investments in renewable energy going forward and keep the existing energy infrastructure running to provide power.

“We need to make sure we modernize our electricity system,” he said.

“We are working with the energy companies, the Australian energy market operator and the Energy Security Board to ensure we responsibly manage this transition from old to new equipment.”

The Capacity Mechanism Plan for the period after 2025 has been released for industry input, with a submission deadline of 25 July.

Energy ministers will meet on Friday to discuss the immediate energy crisis.

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