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What is it going to take and what needs to be done!?

22

Mar 2021

What is it going to take and what needs to be done!?

MARCH 23 2021 — OUR ENERGY, CORTEXO & CTQ ADVISORS In this, the fifth and final article of our series, we aim to highlight some of the principles that could guide the who, what, when and how of Aotearoa New Zealand’s electricity sector meeting the challenges and opportunities of accelerated electrification. The story so far goes like this: Meeting the carbon budgets proposed by the Climate Change Commission requires a fit-for-purpose electricity system and market able to cope with the heavy lifting resulting from rapid electrification and uptake of renewable, distributed energy resources (DER). The electricity sector will not make a least-cost transition to a low emission future without a...

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The clock is ticking on electricity sector flexibility: how long have we got?

15

Mar 2021

The clock is ticking on electricity sector flexibility: how long have we got?

Meeting the carbon budgets proposed by the Climate Change Commission requires a fit-for-purpose electricity system and market able to cope with the heavy lifting resulting from rapid electrification and uptake of renewable, distributed energy resources (DER). The electricity sector will not make a least cost transition to a low emission future without a plan of action. But the broad discussion on how the electricity sector plans to evolve to support least cost electrification and decarbonisation of the economy has not really started.  People, the economy and the environment will be worse off unless a clear plan is quickly developed to guide the upgrade to the regulatory settings needed to have...

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How much could the lack of urgency in the electricity sector cost us?

07

Mar 2021

How much could the lack of urgency in the electricity sector cost us?

Meeting the carbon budgets proposed by the Climate Change Commission requires a fit-for-purpose electricity system and market able to cope with the heavy lifting resulting from rapid electrification and uptake of renewable, distributed energy resources (DER). The electricity sector will not make a least-cost transition to a low emission future without a plan of action. But the broad discussion on how the electricity sector plans to evolve to support least-cost electrification and decarbonisation of the economy has not really started. People, the economy and the environment will be worse off unless the development of a clear plan is prioritised for upgrading regulatory settings needed to support an electricity system and...

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Where is the conversation on evolving the electricity system and market needs to support a low emissions economy?

28

Feb 2021

Where is the conversation on evolving the electricity system and market needs to support a low emissions economy?

Meeting the carbon budgets proposed by the Climate Commission requires a fit-for-purpose electricity system and market able to cope with the heavy lifting required for rapid electrification and uptake of renewable, distributed energy resources (DER). There is no escaping that material changes to regulatory settings for the whole electricity supply chain are needed to meet the proposed carbon targets and maintain security and reliability of supply at least cost. Plenty has been said on the type of changes required The Productivity Commission described the type of changes required in its Low-emissions economy report from August 2018. The Electricity Networks Association (ENA) Network Transformation Roadmap published in April 2019 clearly describes...

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Meeting the proposed carbon budgets will require heavy lifting by the electricity system and market

22

Feb 2021

Meeting the proposed carbon budgets will require heavy lifting by the electricity system and market

Meeting the carbon budgets proposed by the Climate Commission requires a fit-for-purpose electricity system and market able to cope with the heavy lifting required for rapid electrification and uptake of renewable, distributed energy resources (DER). What we have now is not fit-for-purpose and will struggle to bear the load (yes, that’s a pun for all our electrical engineer friends out there!). Current electricity market settings reflect how we have used electricity and energy; not how we are and will. The Climate Commission calls for a clear government-level energy strategy by June 2023 to show how to meet the proposed carbon budgets. Taking this long to have a plan to develop...

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Hey Minister, the new electricity market is ‘shovel ready’

23

Apr 2020

Hey Minister, the new electricity market is ‘shovel ready’

We shouldn’t hobble the future by looking for solutions based on the past. It’s abundantly clear Covid-19 has changed the economic landscape immensely. As we achieve the nations highest priority, our collective health, we now need to look at solving the second issue, our national economic well-being.  The concept of shovel ready projects to stimulate employment and the economy is a sensible one, but this is 2020, and our economy is not based on manufacturing, roading or unskilled labour. We need to continue the promise offered by new technology to improve our lives and the health of the planet. We need to speed up the implementation of those things we...

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What I learnt at ‘All-Energy Australia’

31

Oct 2019

What I learnt at ‘All-Energy Australia’

Last week (23/24 October) I attended All-Energy AU in Melbourne. I’ve been attending this conference for several years, and this year I have to say it was the best one I’ve been too. What helped is that it was twice the size of previous years as they ran the Energy Efficiency Expo in parallel. Plenary sessions plus eight specific conference streams meant a lot of expert information (and opinions) as well as too many excellent presentations missed and all for, wait for it, free. Yes, the registration fee was $0. I should point out that there was also a very large (in NZ terms) exhibition floor with every type of...

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19

Jul 2019

Tomorrows Grid today

PV, batteries & EV’s as IoT devices The following is an abstract submitted for a conference at the end of the year So we put solar on the roof and a battery in the garage and power most of our house for most of the time. Is that all there is? What’s the next step-change and how close is it? We are getting pretty good at optimising Solar PV generation, hot water heating, battery storage and EV charging in the home to maximise the value of the household’s investment. But how can we increase both the financial and social benefit of a household’s or communities expenditure in these distributed energy...

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The (inevitable) democratisation of the electricity consumer.

01

Feb 2018

The (inevitable) democratisation of the electricity consumer.

In the not too distant future, it will be the endpoints of the electricity grid (consumers/prosumers) that manage the supply, balance the load, maintain the frequency, generate and store electricity as well as trade those services between each other. The all-powerful centralised electricity system that carries out all those duties today will still exist, but as the base system, the backbone, the fallback. Those in the electricity sector know that major disruption is occurring within it but it probably isn’t that obvious to the average ‘punter’ who pay’s his or her monthly bill and flicks the switch whenever she wants to get a service (a right!) that everyone takes for...

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10

Feb 2017

Have you heard of Electricity Distribution Businesses?

The electricity sector is changing pretty rapidly and for an industry which thinks building a dam in 15 yrs is ‘rapid’, its probably a bit scary. In my last blog we talked about the disruption in the retail electricity sector with the emergence of new players like Flick Electric, now I’d like to look at the massive changes about to hit the Electricity Distribution Businesses (called EDB’s, network companies or just distributors). Most consumers have no idea who their electricity distributor is (can you name yours?), they assume that whoever they pay their monthly electricity bill too has the sole responsibility for making the electricity and getting it to their house. This of course...

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