Energy Market Transformation
The energy sector is undergoing a major transition, driven by changing technologies, new business models, increasing consumer engagement and climate change policy.
Competitive energy markets with low barriers to entry provide strong incentives for innovation and the adoption of new technologies that benefit consumers. These technologies will empower consumers to engage more actively with their energy decisions, by providing a wider range of energy supply and use options, as well providing new options around the future development of the energy system.
The adoption of new technologies, such as distributed generation, electric vehicles, storage, and energy management systems will challenge traditional business models for the established energy markets. It is critical that the laws and rules governing energy markets evolve in such a way that they support and appropriately accommodate technological change. The Energy Council has already pursued significant work in this area but recognises further assessment is required to ensure the regulatory frameworks are flexible enough to meet these challenges.
At its December 2015 meeting, the Energy Council endorsed a work program to be progressed by the Energy Market Transformation Project Team, to address four key areas. This work is complementary to the work being done by the Energy Council to better integrate energy and climate policies.
Enhanced Competition and Innovation - This work stream is looking at barriers which may prevent:
competition developing in markets for services delivered by emerging technologies such as battery storage.
investment by regulated network providers in innovative technologies to improve the efficiency of the regulated service.
Empowering Consumers - This work stream will review what consumer protections should apply to customers with respect to new products and supply options emerging in the electricity market.
Ongoing Power System Security - This work stream will consider work the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) is doing on whether current arrangements for managing power system security are adequate to integrate large volumes of intermittent generation.
Efficient Investment and Operation of Electricity Infrastructure - This work stream assesses the flexibility of existing network regulatory arrangements, particularly the economic framework, as we shift from a centralised system to a more decentralised one.
The Energy Council’s Energy Market Transformation Project Team has prepared a work program.
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At its August 2016 meeting, the Energy Council agreed to release three consultation papers seeking feedback on issues relating to stand-alone systems, consumer protections and registration systems for battery storage.
For more information on these consultation papers click here.
At its December 2016 meeting, the Energy Council agreed to undertake a cost-benefit analysis of a national battery storage register. On 22 May 2017, Energy Council officials released a draft report and consultation paper on the cost-benefit analysis. On 14 July 2017, the Energy Council agreed to release the final cost-benefit analysis report. For more information on the consultation process and the report, click here.
An August 2017 update on the work program can be found in the Energy Market Transformation Project Team’s bulletin.