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Busting more myths about South Australia’s wind and solar

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Hornsdale square

The South Australia region of the National Electricity Market has become a focal point for those taking an interest in electricity industry transition, as it has a much higher share of variable renewable generation than any other region in Australia.

Contrary to the ideas promulgated by some opponents of wind generation, most of the substantial investment in wind farms in South Australia is not being paid for by taxpayers or electricity consumers in South Australia, but was and is being built under the nationwide Large Renewable Energy Target.

Under this federal policy, the cost of renewable energy certificates is recovered through retail sales of electricity. Late last year the Australian Energy Market Commission estimated that during 2016-17 the LRET added 0.8 cents/kWh to electricity tariffs, which is less than 4 per cent of the tariff.

This is offset by the LRET putting downwards pressure on wholesale prices, as found by numerous analysts. Even discounting this effect, 4% is a reasonable price to pay for what is currently the most important national policy for energy industry development and reducing Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions.

The largest wind farm in South Australia, Hornsdale (also the location of the Tesla big battery), is being built under the ACT’s feed-in-tariff scheme, not under the LRET.

The owners of Hornsdale were able to contract with the ACT Government at a price below $80 per MWh because of the financial security provided by a 20 year contract with the ACT Government.

Between January and August this year the owners of Hornsdale were actually paying the people of the ACT, because the level of wholesale prices in the NEM was often higher than the contract for difference price agreed with the ACT Government.

There are two main reasons why South Australians have had a wind farm boom in their state.  First, there is a lot of wind close to the NEM transmission grid, which means that construction costs are low, and revenue is high. Second, South Australia’s government has been welcoming and supportive of the wind industry.

Over the same period, governments in Victoria and Queensland, particularly, were hostile and obstructive to wind farm investors.  That has now changed in both states.

Wind accounted for 52% of large-scale generation in South Australia in September and 45 per cent in October.  If rooftop solar is included, the total renewable share of generation was 55 per cent and 49 per cent, respectively.

Figure 10

Figure 10

This can be seen in Figure 10 (above), which plots average daily output by wind and gas generators, as well as output from rooftop solar.

Figure 11 (below) shows the same numbers but in stacked format, which makes it easier to see that trade in electricity through the two interconnectors with Victoria shifted from net imports up to June this year to net exports in every month since July.

This means that wind generation was larger when expressed as a proportion of electricity supplied from the grid to consumers in South Australia – 57% in September and 50% in October.

Figures 10 and 11 also show that the gas share of South Australian generation during September was just a few percentage points less than the wind share.

If generation by rooftop solar is also included, total renewables, i.e. wind plus solar, accounted for a record 55 per cent of all electricity generated in the state during September.

After adjusting for net exports of electricity to Victoria during the month, renewable generation was equal to 63 per cent of electricity consumption.

Figure 11

Figure 11

For rooftop solar, although South Australia does not lead other states in installed capacity as it does for wind, it is the leading state in terms of capacity relative to average demand for electricity.  Rooftop solar therefore makes a larger contribution to total electricity consumption than it does in other states.

Over time, this is having an effect on the operation of the electricity supply system in the state, mainly through its effect on patterns of demand, that is no less profound than the effect of wind generation.

Electricity demand

 

South Australia is experiencing profound changes in its patterns of demand. These are summarised in Figure 12.

Figure 12

Figure 12

Total consumption decreased from 2010-11 onward, as did annual peak demand.  Annual minimum overnight demand has stayed roughly constant, but annual minimum demand in the middle of the day has fallen steadily, and since 2012-13 has been lower than the overnight minimum.

This significant change is largely attributable to rooftop solar generation.  In 2007-08, nearly all of the top 2% of 30 minute demand periods occurred before 5 pm local time, many of them well before, when the sun was relatively high in the sky.

In 2016-17, most of the top 5% occurred after 5.30 pm local time, some well after, when the sun was much lower.  Rooftop solar generation has had the effect of both lowering peak demand on the grid and pushing it to later in the day.

No wonder that South Australia is more advanced with trials of demand response than other states.

Changes in demand are also shown by plotting demand in each hour of the year in decreasing order, called an annual load duration curve.

Figure 12 shows load duration curves for electricity supplied from the grid, i.e. excluding rooftop solar and other embedded generation, in South Australia in 2007-08 and in the year from November 2016 to October 2017 (hence forward termed 2016-17).

It also shows the curve for 2016-17 if generation by rooftop solar is added to generation supplied through the grid. Figure 13 focuses on the top 10% of demand intervals.

f12

Figure 13

Figure 13

A number of interesting points arise from these figures.

First, rooftop solar generation, which was virtually zero in 2007-08, has been responsible for a large part of the apparent fall in consumption between 2007-08 and 2016-17.

The remaining part of the fall reflects (the gap between the red and yellow lines) reflects an actual reduction in total consumption of electricity. In 2007-08, total consumption of grid electricity was 14.-0 TWh, while in 2016-17 it was 12.5 TWh, but 13.5 TWh when rooftop solar is added..

Second, while average demand has fallen, the annual 30 minute peak grid demand was almost the same in the two years. In 2007-08 the median 30 minute demand was 1,615 MW, equal to 52% of annual peak demand.  In 2016-7 the corresponding figure was 1,391 MW, equal to 45% of peak demand.

Third, rooftop solar has already substantially reduced grid demand. 2016-17 peak demand including rooftop solar was 7% higher than the 2007-08 peak.  In other words, rooftop solar has made a very significant contribution to reducing annual peak demand for electricity.

However, because the peak has now been shifted to just before sunset, it is unlikely that further increases in rooftop solar capacity will further reducing peak demand.

Third, demand was much more “peaky” in 2016-17 than in 2007-08. In other words, grid generation capacity needed to meet peak demand was needed less often, meaning it was less efficient to maintain it year round to meet those peaks.

In 2007-08 the top 2% of annual demand occurred during 6 hours over the year, the top 5% over 15 hours and the top 10% during 43 hours.  The corresponding figures for 2016-17 were 2 hours, 8 hours, and 16 hours.

Fourth, the minimum annual 30 minute demand (ignoring demand during blackout events) was also lower in 2016-17 than in 2007-08.

This was 661 MW (on 2 October) compared with 996 MW (on 20 April 2008). Furthermore, the minimum occurred during the middle of the day, rather than in the early hours of the morning.

These changes make both demand response and batteries potentially very economically attractive in South Australia. With peak demand events occurring for fewer hours, it becomes increasingly feasible and efficient to meet those peaks through incentives to balance supply and demand by reducing demand for short periods, rather than maintaining supply capacity year round sufficient to meet those peaks.

Alternatively, batteries would only need to be able to deliver output for brief periods to achieve the same outcome.

While rooftop solar has driven changing patterns of demand, wind generation has produced even more substantial changes in ‘residual’ demand – grid demand not met by wind generation.

Figure 14 shows how the residual load duration curve for South Australia changed over a nine year period from 2007-08 to 2016-17.

Figure 14

Figure 14

The substantial gap between the curves represents the large increase in wind generation in South Australia over this period.

Residual demand has also become substantially more ‘peaky’, with similar a similar annual maximum, but the much steeper slope, meaning that the top 10 to 15% of demand occurs for only a few hours in the year.. Median demand left unmet by wind felling by more than a third and is around a third of the peak.

There were much smaller periods in which non-wind grid generating capacity is required to meet the peak and all capacity was much less likely to be operating at any period. The bottom 20% of intervals all had lower residual demand than the minimum demand a year earlier.

In short, increased generation from variable sources not only reduces residual demand but shifts the profile, requiring complementing generation that must operate for fewer hours each year. The graph shows how increased variable wind generation makes battery storage and demand response even more economically attractive – and makes inflexible generation like coal power much less viable.

High renewables, low prices, stable supply: implications for re-designing the National Electricity Market

While the increase in wind power in South Australia has been blamed for blackouts and high prices, the recent experience in South Australia does not support these conclusions.

High levels of variable wind power, often resulting in exports to Victoria, have been complemented by gas generation, resulting in low prices and stable supply.

The recent experience of South Australia has a number of implications for the design of any mechanism to support reliability and emissions reductions, such as the proposed National Energy Guarantee (NEG) scheme.

While the NEG is currently lacking detail, it was released with modelling in which renewable generation at 28-36% in 2030 – with little or no new renewables from the end of the LRET in 2020 – and is touted as supporting ‘dispatchable’ coal fired power plants.

The experience of South Australia in recent months gives grounds for scepticism about such a proposal.

First, average wholesale prices in South Australia throughout the period were lower than in all three other mainland states and only very marginally higher than in Tasmania.

As can be seen below, the two states with the highest prices during the month were Queensland and New South Wales, the two states with the highest shares of coal generation.  Limiting new wind capacity and keeping old coal-fired power stations open is not necessary to reduce wholesale prices.

Picture1

Second, although the share of variable large scale renewable generation was above 50% during September, and just below during October, there were no problems with the reliability of electricity supply.

Moreover, this share was lower than it would have been had AEMO not intervened in the market to curtail wind generation at less than 1,200 MW for a number of hours on various occasions during the month, totalling the equivalent of more than two days.

AEMO’s interventions were taken to guarantee system security. It is therefore reasonable to assume that AEMO considered the electricity supply system in South Australia to be reliable at all times during September and October, despite the high share of variable renewable generation.

During one 30 minute trading interval the wind share of generation was over 80% and it was over 75% during more than one hundred trading intervals in September, summing to the equivalent in total to over four days in the month.

If this is possible in South Australia why should other states be different? If they are not different, then why does the government propose to constrain renewable generation to 36% or less by 2030?

If there is no technical need for such a constraint to guarantee reliability, it is hard to avoid the conclusion that the limitation is driven by ideology.

Third, most of the gas generation during September was supplied by the state’s two combined cycle power stations (and for that reason the two most efficient) – Pelican Point and Osborne. The average capacity factor for the month was 78% at Pelican Point and 76% at Osborne.

Most of the remaining gas generation came from the ageing Torrens Island A and Torrens Island B stations. Adjusting for the fact that two units at Torrens Island B and one at Torrens Island A were shut, presumably for maintenance which is commonly undertaken in spring and autumn, these two plants had capacity factors of 13% and 43% respectively.

The two units in operation at Torrens Island B spent much of the month generating at either 90-95% or at 25-30% of rated capacity.  Torrens Island A was totally shut down for six separate extended periods totalling more than half the hours in the month, but was also required to generate at near maximum output over about 6 hours at various times.

Such highly variable modes of operation are necessary for dispatchable generators being tasked to balance supply from variable renewable generators.

Rapid variation in output and operation at low part-loads are technically feasible for gas generators, though newer gas turbine plants are better suited than the ageing gas-fired steam turbines at Torrens Island.

Low capacity operation is also financially feasible, though perhaps not attractive, for old plants like Torrens Island, which are presumably fully depreciated and do not have to carry financing costs.

Elsewhere in the NEM, the rhetoric about the NEG appears to envisage that the variable functionality provided by Torrens Island in South Australia will be provided by coal-fired power stations.

They are not well suited to this role. Technically, coal-fired units cannot operate for extended periods at part loads of less than 50%. Further, they cannot be entirely shut and then restarted over periods of a few days, at least not regularly.

Financially, some may be able to operate for extended periods at low overall capacity factors. If they did, however, some may have difficulty justifying more than routine maintenance costs, undoubtedly induced by duty cycles requiring rapid and large amplitude output variation.

It is presumably such considerations which have led many critics of the NEG to suggest that it will lock in coal-fired generation at high capacity and block the transition of the Australian electricity supply system to a low emission future.

Fourth, by removing demand from the middle of the day, the steadily increasing capacity of rooftop solar generation will also increase the variability of the residual demand which dispatchable generators currently supply.

The designers of the NEG appear to think that it will greatly constrain increases in wind and grid-connected solar generation after the LRET is built out in 2020.

Such a limitation would serve to “protect” the role of existing coal fired power stations, by preventing further increases in the variability of the demand which dispatchable generators are required to meet.

However, the NEG will not, without imposing some form of outright ban, be able to constrain the continuing growth of rooftop solar generation, which will continue to be an attractive investment for many electricity consumers, even without the rebate currently available through the Small Renewable Energy Scheme.

As a final comment, for long-time observers of Australian energy and greenhouse policy there is painful irony, and not a little apprehension in the facts that:

  1. the NEG will incorporate environmental objectives relating to greenhouse gas emissions into the National Electricity Market Rules;
  2. in doing so, numerous far-reaching changes to the Rules will have to be completed in two years or less, and
  3. according to reports, the principal architect of the NEG is the Australian Energy Market Commission (AEMC).

For well over a decade, many individuals and organisations have tried to change the National Electricity Objective (NEO) to incorporate environmental objectives. The NEO is a statement, endorsed by COAG and embodied in the National Electricity Law, which determines the whole framework for the NEM Rules.

To paraphrase, the objective is to promote efficiency in all aspects of the electricity industry operation, so as to enhance, in the long term interests of consumers, price, quality, safety, reliability, and security of supply of electricity.

All attempts to add an environmental objective to this list, and therefore to bring the pursuit of environmental objectives into the scope of the Rules, have been vigorously and effectively opposed by the AEMC.

The AEMC has also, in its role as “the rule maker for Australian electricity and gas markets” become notorious for its slow processes to make any change to the existing Rules. I

It is hard to avoid the conclusion that, faced with an unavoidable need to make some changes in pursuit of emissions reduction, the AEMC has skilfully ensured that it will take the lead in determining how such changes are made and what the new Rules will be.

Hugh Saddler is an energy analyst who compiles the National Energy Emissions Audit on behalf of the  Australia Institute’s Climate & Energy program.  

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  • RobertO

    HI All, reading this make me think there is a case for new interconnects linking SA (say Port Augusta ) to NSW via Broken Hill for the Competitive Renewable Energy Zone (CREZ) going to Liddell, Vic to NSW somewhere near and linking to Broken Hill and near Hazelwood interconnect to SA(making a new CREZ in North West Vic).
    Bass Link 2 has less of a case, but given its for security and provides power into Vic it may also become viable. The only thing I am certain of is that we need to spend some money to get more independant generators on line (and reduce the power if the “gentailers”). CREZ require tranmission lines to be built, and if your close to the border of another state then interlink the states would seem to be better outcomes for both sides of the border.

    • BushAxe

      Electranet are currently doing a study on a new interconnector between SA-NSW.

    • rob

      Sorry Roberto but S.A. has no reason to share its hard work with the luddites in N.S.W. If the largest State in the country can’t get off their collective arses and do what we have done here in S.A….. stiff shit ! Stick with your COALition State wide and Federally and keep burning your COAL (90% OF YOUR ELECTRICITY) while we motor on to 100% renewables! Once we have done that we may sell you clean power at extortionate prices! Your state has always left us at the bottom of the chain with Power and indeed STEALING our precious Murray water…….so I guess what I am saying is the same as our state energy Minister …… TOM KOUTS……. SA FIRST and the rest of you can simply suck it up as your coal generator melt this or next Summer!

      • RobertO

        Hi Rob, One of the problem I often run into is the some people think that they are the only person in the world that matters. We all live on space ship earth. If SA forgets that they are part of the NEM and tries on its own to break the “Gentailers” then they will have to fight them on their own. It will not help SA if wind is curtailed and Gas in compulsory burned. It better to share and the interconnect through a CRE zone (near Broken Hill towards Sydney has a potential of 8000MW RE) would drive prices down much quicker that SA trying to do it on its own. Remember interconnects take 3 years minimum to install and more like 5 years (Bass Link 2 will take nearer to 8 to 10 years).
        As to the Murry water issue remember it the pollies whom drive this issue. Is SA doing this to distract someone? Is it NSW not telling SA what they are doing? The whole issue has been poorly managed, and the information / communication appears to be self-interest only, and all parties are guilty. In 1984 I tried to get the Sydney Water Board (SWB) to pump all our sewage over the Blue Mountains into the Murry Darling Basin as part of a 100 year plan.
        This was about 1000 Ml per day, (and before you complain about it remember so countries have been doing this for many years with little or no effect on the populations in terms of sickness). SWB were at that time just pumping sewage off shore without treatment at all. LA in the USA started in 1955 the process was primary only but they have now up graded to full treatment.

        • rob

          Sorry once again Roberto but I will reiterate that S.A. ALWAYS get the dregs as we are a relatively low populated large area state at both the end of the NEM and the Murray Darling river. For far too long we 1.2 million people have been taken for granted by the larger states in the NEM, thus we have had to go it alone……..once we started there was simply no stopping it! The COALition hated what we were doing and eviscerated us very publically for political reasons and supposed gain. Much to their surprise our renewables ARE working and are level pegging with QLD on rooftop solar without their ridiculously high feed in tariffs. Many many projects are still in the pipeline including making steel using renewable energy (thanks gupta) and the opening tomorrow of the world’s largest battery (thanks Elon)……our Leaders have vision! And the community is on board! We banned single use shopping bags god knows how many years ago and were the first state to introduce a deposit scheme on can and bottles to reduce pollution 30 odd years ago.We are now studied as a test case world wide on renewable energy and plan to keep motoring on to 100%………..I know full well that we are not the only person /people in the world! But we have done it tough here for many years with the destruction of our large manufacturing base (thanks COALition) but have taken the bull by the horns and are attracting Hi tech engineering by the Tesla truck load! We are simply playing the hand that the larger states and Feds have dealt us! IT IS WORKING!

          As to Water……we negotiated in good faith! We had a deal! but QLD , and especially NSW have allowed massive rorting of the system with huge farmers building massive dams the size of Sydney Harbour and you’re state Governments and the Feds don’t seem to want to do anything about it ,hence SA has had to recently announce a State Royal Commission as our River dies……..The end of the Murray othen silts over due to lack of inflow leading to massive salinity issues upstream! WE HAVE TO DRINK THIS SHIT! A river dies from it mouth ie the coorong here in SA. Yet big money investors in NSW (google chris corrigan) and the upper states and Feds don’t give a damn or dam!

          SA is a lovely place to live. I have a 1000 sq m home and native garden 9 minutes from the city centre with massive significant gums and resident koala! Value of it approx $700k…… Try that in Sydney! I point that person thing out to point out the advantages we have here in SA. …..With our move to hi tech engineering etc here now we can attract the best and brightest from around Aust and the world to an affordable city.

          We are the only State that is prepared to take on the big Gentailers on our own while (I will say it again) you luddites gorge on your COAL and COALition. Get off your collective arses and follow in our footsteps!
          Cheers rob

        • neroden

          SA now has so much wind and solar — none of it controlled by the gentailers — that SA *can* break the gentailers on their own. By leaving the NEM (which SA can do, on its own, at any time, apparently) they can break the gentailers entirely.

          • RobertO

            Hi neroden, So all your wind is merchant? I think not, so some is controlled by the Gentailers and their PPA and they often pick up the LGC for free. The Gentailers control input via gas prices and retail via selling prices, and yes you may leave the NEM but the same three companies will still control most of the power in the state, from generator to retail. The battery will help drive prices down. An interconnect to NSW and joined to QLD would drive prices further down.

          • neroden

            True, didn’t think about gentailers controlling wind. 🙁 They could deliberately shut down wind farms for funsies and market manipulation if they controll them. 🙁

        • mick

          if not alone id be happy with a wa/nt/sa em with the explosion in re that would bring about

  • BushAxe

    Excellent article Hugh. Given the low capacity factors at TIPSA I don’t think it was a hard decision for AGL to replace it with the new reciprocating generation (Barker Inlet) which is far more flexible and efficient.

  • Coffeeguyzz .

    You all can frame this discussion any way you like, but as of a few minutes ago, the futures contract for the upcoming summer quarter for South Australia is $173/Mwh ($149 for Victoria).
    Using a multiplier of 4 to go from wholesale to retail, folks in SA will pay about $7 for a single kilowatt hour of electricity.

    Good luck.

    • RobertO

      Hi Coffeeguyzz, The futures contract pricing is no guarentee that the price on that day will be that price. It what I as the seller would like you to buy it at today for that day in the future. As more PV, Wind and Batteries come on line then the high prices lose there value (and you will still pay your $173 MWhr if your agreed to your futures contract). The day price may be $60MWhr or less.

      • Coffeeguyzz .

        Yes Robert.
        However, the expected spot wholesale price in 6 hours from this posting is $14,000/Mwh for SA and Vic.
        Alarmingly, this is expected all afternoon, coincident with high temperatures and cloudy skies.
        In addition, the AEMO just posted a Level 2 notice of reserve shortfall at 04:15 for Vic … 10 hours prior to peak demand.
        I most sincerely wish the best for all my Aussie friends, but I fear you are perilously near to severely damaging your country by continuing down this path.

        • RobertO

          Hi Coffeeguyzz, Gaming the market place in Australia is legal, and if you with hold 1, or 2, or 3 MW and the AEMO has to ask for more power you can set whatever price you want. It not that we are short of power production, it’s that we are short of producers. Our controller is called the AEMC, sets the rules and the 5 minute rule was mooted 2 years ago, by Sun Metals in Townville (they decided to build their own 125 MW solar plant late last year). The AEMC have studied the idea and issued an edit that it will become law on 1 July 2021. (It should have taken 6 months to examine and 6 months to install but the man in charge of AEMC is pro coal and has fought every possible change to protect coal at all costs and bugger the consumer). We in this country also allowed companies to build near monopolies in the supply change (only 3 called “Gentailers”). They also used their position to refuse to support RE which they were to buy LGC on the market that they refused to buy, then used market power to force producers to sell them the LGC at a price $0.00 (otherwise we will not buy your power) because they are all attached to coal power. In Qld we have a PHES called Wivenhoe at 500 MW (2 * 250 MW each) used only when the local coal power is short of production supply (because each $1.00 of profit of Wivenhoe takes $7.00 off the Coal power profit run by same company also owned by state Gov, all coal power in QLD is State owned). Another problem is our Fed Gov is called the COALition and they are so pro coal some even want to build new coal power stations yet our PM finally acknowledged that RE is cheaper to build new coal.

          • Coffeeguyzz .

            Robert,
            I am in no way an authority on the Australia power situation.
            Likewise, the political realm is something totally unknown to me, but I am learning.

            My lifelong experience as an American is deeply rooted in the free market, open competition arena, subject to reasonable oversight as projected through government regulation.

            Now, it is readily demonstrable that wholesale electrical pricing as per PJM (mid Atlantic area of US. Tens of millions in the customer base) hovers in the US$25/Mwh range due in large part to the CCGT plants providing low cost juice now and coming online (24 in Ohio and Pennsylvania alone next few years).
            Your country’s industrial base is threatened with evisceration not merely from US competitors, but global powers relying upon fossil fuels.

            Again, my sentiments are strongly on your (Aussie) collective behalf.
            I fear it will take irrefutable evidence of both lack of energy along side exorbitant cost to prompt timely action before your country is relegated to impoverished status.

          • neroden

            The situation in Australia is indeed dire — do you remember Enron? Well, what Enron did is LEGAL in Australia and is SUPPORTED by the federal government (the LNP, aka the COALition) in Australia. This market manipulation is driving prices to sky-high levels, just as Enron did in the US.

            The only escape for this is for South Australia to go its own path. To build its own solar and wind and its own batteries (either at individual sites, like Sun Metals, or contracted to the state government, like the Big Battery). This is the only way they can escape the Enron-style criminals (called “gentailers”).

            Solar and wind are the only *local* resources available to South Australia. They are the only options. Thankfully they are also by far the cheapest.

            This is also true in Victoria and NSW, but they don’t appear to have noticed yet. 🙁 Queensland has noticed and is just barely starting to do something.

    • David Osmond

      slight correction, $173 x4 equates to about $700/MWh, or 70c per kWh

      • Coffeeguyzz .

        …and that is why you all do not want me to do the accounting.
        Math is not my strong suit, but operational procedures are across various fields.
        Looks like Vic wholesale spot hit $7,000+ and SA over $10,000 at the 4:55 PM mark today for 5 minutes.
        That may have prompted more generators to jump in as Tasmania seems to be producing more than usual.
        Still, 70 cents per kilowatt hour is exorbitantly high and, for commercial purposes, not viable.
        Not my place to interject in your Aussie affairs, but I’ll repeat that the path your country appears to be taking may be more perilous than you would, collectively, choose.

        • RobertO

          Hi Coffeeguyzz There our wholesale market for today
          https://www.aemo.com.au/Electricity/National-Electricity-Market-NEM/Data-dashboard#price-demand

          We work in 30 min segements and the system geared that way

          The prices are settlement prices

          • Coffeeguyzz .

            Thanks Robert, but the 30 minute presentation is the default setting.
            In the upper right of the screen, one can toggle to the 5 minute increments.

          • RobertO

            Hi Coffeeguyzz, The 5 minute rule becomes law on 1 July 2021 so at this time just there so people can see what it might be like. You can down load all prices for any month going back to 1998 when the NEM started and they are all in 30 minute segments. The RRP is final 2 days after, and some appeals are lodged usually on the day. It a wholesale market where the person setting the highest price sets the price for all on the market Wind and Solar are price takers Gas, Coal and Hydro are price setters. Today a battery starts in the market place (not sure how it will be seen or how much influance it will have but it should remove some of the very high spikes ($13998 is the highest I have seen in the 30 minute segment)

  • neroden

    Is there any reason for South Australia to stay in the NEM? Besides the profit from exporting over the interconnector, I mean.