Transgrid: 100% renewables is feasible and affordable | RenewEconomy

Transgrid: 100% renewables is feasible and affordable

Network operator Transgrid says 100 per cent renewable energy is both feasible and affordable, and says only incremental increases in renewable energy will not achieve potential falls in the cost of electricity.


Major transmission company Transgrid says 100 per cent renewable energy is both feasible and affordable, and is urging policy makers to “step out in large ways” because incremental change will not deliver climate goals or potential cost savings.

“We are talking about rebuilding the generation system in this transition,” Tony Meehan, the company’s head of regulation, told the Australian Clean Energy Summit in Sydney this week.

“A 100% transition to renewable energy can be feasible and can be met in a way that is affordable for consumers,” he said. He noted that the energy mix would be met not just by large-scale renewables, but by “behind the meter” PV, storage, demand management and energy efficiency.

Meehan said the current investment in large-scale wind and solar was exciting, but the country would “need to step out” and add renewables in the thousands of megawatts to ensure that energy costs came down.


TransGrid Renewable Resource Map copyMeehan produced this graph above to illustrate where some of the wind and solar resources could be exploited, many in areas currently unserved by transmission lines.

(Apologies for the quality of the slide: The orange shaded areas each show potential of 5,000MW of large-scale solar capacity, while the green shaded areas each show 3,000MW of wind energy potential. In the blue, Snowy has potential for 8,000MW new capacity).

“Our focus is probably not to look at places where people already looking,” he says. “We have identified zones in NSW where we could add tens of thousands of megawatts of large -cale solar, and north-west Victoria and western NSW have got lots of wind.

“People are not looking there because the areas are not serviced by transmission.”

Transgrid, of course, has an interest in building new transmission lines, because operating them is its core business. But Meehan said that transmission would only comprise around 4 per cent of the total cost of a renewable energy transition, which he said would bring down prices.

But apart from using transmission as a platform towards more renewables, he said new mechanisms that could provide ancillary services and a market design appropriate to the future energy mix was also needed, one that prompted genuine competition and protected consumers.

There has been an increasing focus on transmission, lately, because of the need to build enough renewable energy plants to make up for the loss of capacity from coal-fired power stations that are slated to close. Liddell in NSW is the next to shut its doors, with its 2GW of capacity due to come off line in 2022.

ITK analyst David Leitch made the same call earlier this month, underlining the importance of new transmission lines. Others are pushing for new connectors to Tasmania, to unlock that state’s huge wind reserves and its potential to be a “big battery”, as well as new links to South Australia.

It is not the first time that Transgrid has spoken of very high penetration renewable energy scenarios, having outlined a vision for 95 per cent renewables just a few months ago.

Meehan’s comments also underline the fact that 100 per cent renewable energy scenarios are no longer solely the province of environmental NGOs and university researchers, and contradict claims by the federal government and conservatives that even 50 per cent renewable targets are “reckless”.

The CSIRO and Energy Networks Australia – of which Transgrid is a key member – last year combined to produce a roadmap for a zero emissions grid way before 2050, an undertaking they said would save $100 billion off the cost of business as usual and deliver significant savings to consumers.

By contrast, the Finkel Review, which only entertained a modest transformation of 42 per cent renewables by 2030, and zero emissions by 2070, spoke of only modest reductions in bills.

But with the falling cost of wind and solar, and predictions such as those of Bloomberg New Energy Finance that the cost of solar will beat even existing coal plants by 2032, there is growing realisation that renewable energy, combined with smart demand management and energy efficiency, is the key to cutting costs.

transgrid - renewable project copy

Meehan also said there was much greater potential in the Snowy Hydro scheme – putting it at 8,000MW of new capacity, rather than the 2,000MW identified in the federal government’s Snowy 2.0 pumped hydro proposal.

“We are seeing very much the start of the transition,” Meehan said. “We have got 1,000MW in wind and solar under construction as we speak. The transition is underway ….. but we need to facilitate a lot more, we need an intensive effort around planning. Time is short.”

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  1. solarguy 3 years ago

    Once again another big company comes out and says, 100% RE no problem and it will be cheaper, 100% cleaner and more affordable. So suck it up right wing fossil fools, your coal is good for humanity argument never was tenable. Who exactly is delusional Prime Minister, just look in the mirror to find the truth!

    • Rod 3 years ago

      I expect any moment to see this news in my local Murdoch rag or on tonight’s mainstream media news.
      I live in hope.

      • john 3 years ago

        The only comment in a Murdock paper will be an article deriding it and promoting a new HELE plant or some such.

    • Alastair Leith 3 years ago

      But Adani’s coal is low ash and low sulphate they claimed again tonight on Q&A (hint Josh, Carmichael mine coal isn’t, and even if it was, that’s the drug dealers defense like saying our smack only kills 33 in 100 users and their smack kills 39 users in 100).

      Point is coal today an immoral export product as it’s directly leading to the catastrophic outcomes from CC that have been warned about for decades. Lets ship renewable energy as liquefied wind and sun. Get on with it, Josh and stop taking money from dodgy Indian businessmen, surely you’re better than our cricketers, Josh?

  2. David leitch 3 years ago

    Transgrid has a very positive approach. Of course it suits their book. Lots of new transmission investment dollars. In this case though I personally am content to cheer them on.

    • Rod 3 years ago

      Agreed. Electranet here in SA appears very supportive of RE
      Maybe the transmission companies need to get together and promote the renewables transition. As you say, it is in their collective interest.
      They will also be affected, eventually, should mass grid defection happen.

    • Mike Westerman 3 years ago

      Likewise! And in the end the right mix of solar/wind plus storage could be very good for them.

      I can’t see Snowy 2 being worth the effort at less than 8GW, given current tx constraints and likelihood of a confrontation over environmental issues. OTH, Transgrid’s developments in northern NSW give impetus to alternative possibilities around the Armidale area that are probably easier to do and better returns.

      • riley222 3 years ago

        Mike, it has to start at least?

        • Mike Westerman 3 years ago

          if only!!

      • Peter Atherton 3 years ago

        Hi Mike, I think solar to gas should be considered to solve the energy storage problem once and for all and to transition away from CSG. If it’s good enough for Audi it should be good enough for Oz.
        Ten percent of the area of Australia, where the solar intensity is as high as anywhere on earth, can provide the entire worlds energy.
        The NAIF should have a strategy and the strategy shoiuld be to create wealth for the north and this with the amazing solar resource in the north.

        • Mike Westerman 3 years ago

          If the cost was right then definitely solar to gas or solar to liquids makes sense, but that will be the bottom line. PHES is cheap, benign and simple in concept, as well as leading to increased water retention/storage – vital in a changing climate

          • Peter Atherton 3 years ago

            PHES is great and so is solar to gas from our strongest sunlight on the planet
            Complementary technologies laying the “storage problem” for renewables to rest

        • Alastair Leith 3 years ago

          I think as more of the worlds grids approach >50% we’ll see power2gas (and gas can be liquified) starting to emerge. At present PHES is as cheap as it gets for mass energy storage at the largest scale.

          • Greg Hudson 3 years ago

            So what happens when this ‘gas’ is burnt ? More pollution ?

      • Alastair Leith 3 years ago

        Andrew Blackers, ANU suggests there’s better places for PHES than Tumut 3 (on economics and environmental grounds). And if it’s distributed across the NEM that makes it more resilient to outages and closer to demand centres.

        • Mike Westerman 3 years ago

          I would completely agree – Snowy 2 is probably a battle not worth fighting, and is the wrong answer to the wrong question! If Turnbull and Frydenburg had an ounce of integrity they would have offered to fund PHES for SA – surely to enable SA to be 100% RE before 2025 would be a more worthy aspiration!

          • Alastair Leith 3 years ago

            Exactly, was all about attempting to regain the initiative from SA (after the shirt fronting from Jay Weatherill) and spoofing the poll happening in the next day or two.

            Hunt offered to fund solarCST and the jury (SA Government tender for 100MW of “low-carbon” changed from sustainable/renewables of government PPA) is still out on it. Fingers crossed for Solar Reserve at Port Augusta!

  3. howardpatr 3 years ago

    Seems a strategic DC transmission network from South Australia to South East Queensland needs to be on the drawing board(s)?

  4. MrMauricio 3 years ago

    Tasmania as the battery of the NEM-based on existing substantial hydro and abundant wind resources -using on King and Flinders Islands en route to top up!!!!

    • riley222 3 years ago

      You would think. But it seems a long way off right now.

    • Chris Fraser 3 years ago

      And some Tassies are not keen to augment connector capacities and share clean energy.

  5. Don McMillan 3 years ago

    Reality is that right now our factories are not competitive. I have been recommending that they must move asap [to the USA] to remain competitive or die.

    • solarguy 3 years ago

      No, our factories stay right here and be powered by RE and by up grading to better more modern equipment they will become ultimately very competitive!

      • Don McMillan 3 years ago

        It’s simple if it is cheaper to import your a dead duck. Energy is 5 times cheaper in the USA. Companies are either seeking subsidies [Alcoa] or setting up factories in the USA [IPL, One steel etc]
        My recommendation which is no different to my colleagues is to move as fast as possible if energy costs make you uncompetitive.

        • Ren Stimpy 3 years ago

          Is that because of the massive difference in the price of gas between the USA and Australia. Gas in the USA is cheap, gas in Australia is expensive. Causing power in the USA to be cheap, and power in Australia to be expensive.

          • Don McMillan 3 years ago

            Correct. In Australia we have chosen to have expensive gas. Currently there is little investment in gas exploration due to the bans and moratorium Plus $3.5 Billion investors lost in NSW. Renewables need gas and why the industry has abandoned gas I cannot understand. If we have cheap gas then renewables would not have this bad press.

            FYI passage from my letter published in the OZ

            “the USA gas price reached 13.42 USD/MMBtu in 2005 whereas the price today is 2.97 USD/MMBtu. This 77%
            drop in price was not caused by government intervention, restrictive practices or moratoriums, it was solely due to free enterprise. Australia is blessed with gas resources so it is our choice if we want to utilise this gift. For a reliable, sustainable, cost effective natural gas industry, it is essential to create an investment atmosphere devoid of restrictive practices and
            sovereign risk.”
            Australia has chosen to have high gas prices.

          • Ren Stimpy 3 years ago

            No we haven’t chosen that. The USA simply has a massive domestic gas market and relatively small exports. We have a small domestic gas market and relatively massive exports.

            Renewables just need dispatchables. Whether those dispatchables are gas ….. IF those are cheap enough (not now, and probably not ever here!) … or other forms i.e. pumped hydro, CST, biomass, grid batteries, or any other which can EASILY compete with gas, because gas is so high in price here, remains to be seen.

            I watched a five minute interview by Bolt of Craig Kelly yesterday, and not ONCE was the word ‘gas’ mentioned. Those two might as well have been speaking in clear sharp voice up their own clackers.

          • Mike Shurtleff 3 years ago

            Spot on!

          • Ren Stimpy 3 years ago

            I don’t want to seem like I’m casting blame, afterall NG producers are just like any other business, it’s their job to sell as much of their product as they possibly can. They’re always going to prefer selling into the largest possible market so in Australia they will always prefer lucrative overseas contracts, and their focus will mostly be on meeting those contracts. But with that in mind, if we don’t unhitch our electricity generation from gas our power prices will always be at the mercy of ‘that other’ industry. Cheaper is one thing but also if we take the fluctuating costs of ‘fuels’ out of the equation we’ll get much longer stretches of stable electricity prices.

          • Mike Shurtleff 3 years ago

            Agree with all that, but I would cast some blame too. NG electricity producers in Australia have been stacking the deck against renewables and taking advantage of Australian electricity customers. Not ok. There is fair and reasonable competition, good business, and then there is unfair and unreasonable, crooked business. The latter is not ok. Nail them to the wall on that one.

          • Don McMillan 3 years ago

            Gas prices in OZ have historically been low. Every time the gas price rose investment flowed generating supply. This time is different, high gas price has not attracted investors. Government bans and moratoriums has basically made gas exploration illegal in Tasmania Vic, NSW, Sth SA and NT. With NT off limits makes Nth Qld unviable. Combined with State Governments changing the rules, e.g. Vic new legislation banning on-shore drilling but still insisting the gas companies maintain their licence commitments to drill exploration wells. So if they do not maintain their commitment they’ll loose their licence/properties. This is why we have high gas prices and it is by Choice.

          • Ren Stimpy 3 years ago

            Gas prices were historically low, but then the export gas market went gangbusters.

            Even if government bans and moratoriums on fracking are lifted there’s no guarantee that the increased supply from those sources would be used in the domestic market to put downward pressure on electricity prices. In fact the opposite is almost guaranteed ie. that those additions to gas supply would also be sent overseas, because the export market is a bigger better market for gas producers. That’s not a choice, it’s just the way it is. So, sure we could open up our land more to destructive fracking but it won’t help domestic gas shortages.


            The best possible thing to do looks like we need to start decoupling our electricity generation from the gas market to arrest electricity prices, and the gas producers can get the best possible deal for more of their product in the insatiable Asian markets.

          • Don McMillan 3 years ago

            In the early 2000’s the project gas supply was expected to exceed demand, to the point the NSW government was promoting building LNG plants at Newcastle. This is why NSW Domgas did not object to QLD CSG being exported. The forecasts assumed no sovereign risk. WOOPS.
            You are correct lifting the bans and Moratoriums will not increase supply. Invests lost over $3.5B in NSW aren’t coming back. Also investment to gas supply takes 10 – 15 year cycle.
            Correct again – we must decouple gas from electricity. Goodluck
            This is why I recommend any energy dependent [especially gas as a feedstock] industry must move OS asap.
            This is a man-made problem,

          • Alastair Leith 3 years ago

            You continue to pitch a fiction, Don. LNG is the single and only cause of the price spike. I expect if USA started exporting major quantities their domestic price will also spike. They have until recently had a domestic use protection on exports. Fracking isn’t needed, nor will fossil gas be in the zero emissions economy (which is critical to establish to avoid the 5-8º C of warming which we are tracking towards with BAU).

          • Don McMillan 3 years ago

            Historically when the gas or oil price increases investment flows generating supply. This is why oil price dropped from $USD145/bbls to todays price $USD48/bbl. In the US gas price dropped from $USD15/MMBtu to todays price $2.97MMBtu. Gas price in OZ has never been this high but no investment. I own a gas company but I cannot operate in most states. The biggest issue relating to climate change in our region, by far, is the deforestation of Papua, Irian Jaya, Sumatra. The $3B on subsidies last year were to curtail emissions which proved to be waste of money. Indonesia’s emissions surpassed OZ and increasing 5%/year. If we were worried about climate change we would be assisting our neighbours rather than endeavouring to force our industries to move OS.

          • Mike Shurtleff 3 years ago

            Why did NG investors lose $3.5 Billion in NSW?

          • Don McMillan 3 years ago

            That is the amount of money gas companies invested in NSW CSG & conventional gas. I helped out 4 small companies who all lost everything. The NSW took their licences to operate away. Simple. [Sovereign risk, NSW has the same risk ranking as Venezuela] The most public was Metgasco – they spent $120Million drilling in the north. The $Billion looses where Santos and AGL [ Camden & Gloucester ] Santos is the last one standing with Narrabri which I think has no chance. Santos claim could supply 50% of NSW needs. Would you invest in NSW?

          • Barri Mundee 3 years ago

            OUR gas is being sold overseas in huge quantities resulting in driving up the price. Many other countries have put in place a gas reserve system which ensures adequate supply at a reasonable price.

            I do not give a crap about sovereign risk if our domestic consumers and industry suffer.

          • Don McMillan 3 years ago

            When QLD CSG contracts were up for grabs early 2000’s the NSW Domgas guys refused to sign. QLD CSG would prefer to sell locally as they have to burn 10% to convert gas to LNG. They had no choice but to export [long term contracts] as they otherwise could not gain finance to develop. The DOMGAS guys refused because of $’s plus pipeline costs compared to Gas being produced locally – NSW. NSW gas was projected to flood to market – gas industry invested over $3.5B in NSW. With the NSW Gov kicked the gas explorers out the politicians chose populism over domestic gas customers.

          • Alastair Leith 3 years ago

            When you’re in a hole, digging deeper is not the solution, Don.

          • Alastair Leith 3 years ago

            Wrong, we’re shipping it all, which caused the domestic wholesale price to triple. Just as BZE predicted it would back when we wrote the Buildings Plan 2013 and said lets free ourselves from this dirty, soon to be expensive, redundant energy network and switch to clean, climate friendly renewable electricity.

          • Don McMillan 3 years ago

            Back in 2005 it was predicted that we would have a surplus of supply which is why DOMgas and NSW gov, Feds all supported LNG. By 2013 the horse has bolted [longterm contracts were signed years previously] and the industry warned Gov’s of what is happening now.
            Renewable energy requires a backup. Geologically [OZ] hydro is limited, Batteries is still experimental and very expensive, which leaves gas. Batteries are fine but right now, today, renewables need gas. So banning gas before infrastructure is developed to overcome intermittent behaviour of renewables is poor engineering.

          • Mike Shurtleff 3 years ago

            Also, your national politics and the death grip your coal/NG producers + utilities there have on policy. Get rid of the bastards. Looks like that is starting to happen now.

            Of course I could say the same for the USA right now. …then again they have not yet attacked Wind or Solar PV here.

            Giles is correct. Wind + Solar PV + pumped hydro + Battery Storage means cheaper and more reliable electricity. That means more competitive manufacturing in Oz …and higher standard of living. …and you are ahead of USA right now …with California solar resources for most of your entire country.

          • Ren Stimpy 3 years ago

            I don’t want to seem like I’m casting blame, afterall NG producers are just like any other business, it’s their job to sell as much of their product as they possibly can. They’re always going to prefer selling into the largest possible market so in Australia they will always prefer lucrative overseas contracts, and their focus will mostly be on meeting those contracts. But with that in mind, if we don’t unhitch our electricity generation from gas our power prices will always be at the mercy of ‘that other’ industry. Cheaper is one thing but also if we take the fluctuating costs of ‘fuels’ out of the equation we’ll get much longer stretches of stable electricity prices.

            Yeh the politics has been really dodgy around all of it – energy, environment, emissions, climate change. It’s enough to get one hopping mad (and it often does).

          • Alastair Leith 3 years ago

            Beyond Zero Emissions researchers have envisaged this since the original Stationary Energy Plan:

            The Renewable Energy Superpower Report. We could have some of the cheapest ore processing, green steel smelting and fabrication and liquid energy exports in the world.

          • Alastair Leith 3 years ago

            Part of the reason gas is now expensive in Australia is the export hubs are now sucking in as much as they can, their estimations of availability were out by a large amount (and Australia pays for their negligence/selfishness)

        • Giles 3 years ago

          Energy is 5 times cheaper than grid power in Australia if you use wind or solar, as businesses are slowly starting to realise – Sun Metals, Telstra, Nectar farms, Whyalla Steel, the WA garnet mine and the list goes on. If they only relying on Murdoch media for their news, they would have been completely stuffed.

          • Don McMillan 3 years ago

            I rely on actual energy costs business show me, not the media. It is useless to have “cheap” solar and or wind if you have to pay ridiculous $’s when the sun is not shining and no wind. My criticism is that we introduced renewables without thought to what happens when the sun is no shining and no wind. Bad Engineering. We are now in catch up mode. The cost to our industry is evident and how damaging to our economy yet to be determined. In the meanwhile the poor suffer – Letter to the OZ Mr Zajac last sentence “My wife is cold, I am cold.”

          • Barri Mundee 3 years ago

            One huge problem is the politics. The Conservatives have been doing their level best to stymie renewables and boost coal. Ferderally rhe Coalition has been treading a fine line between supporting the inevitable rise in renewables and placating their right wing.
            Due to this political gridlockthere has been no effective overall planning for a high renewables future.

          • Don McMillan 3 years ago

            When it comes to Natural Gas it’s the Conservatives [NSW VIC] that banned gas exploration. Labor has been very supportive until NT Labor party stated if elected they would place bans on the gas explorers. Its the conservative that has damaged the gas industry. The unintended consequences has generated bad press for the renewables as they require [now today] gas as a backup.

          • Alastair Leith 3 years ago

            Don, you do realise that with fugitive emissions at 2.5-3%, burning fossil gas to produce electricity is just as bad for the climate as burning coal don’t you? I’d suggest 3% is optimistic for unconventional gas, as data from USA indicates levels anywhere from 5-15% FE are common enough. THe oversight of that industry is non-existant and Dick Cheney signed into law a provision which exempts them from the clean air and water legislation which the EPA is supposed to enforce (I say enforce advisedly as Scott Pruitt takes the helm).

            Fracking is a nightmare Australia doesn’t need, and it’s already out of control in QLD. There’s a glut of gas, thing is the LNG trains are taking it all and too many of them were allowed.

          • Don McMillan 3 years ago

            There three main industries working in the outback, Agriculture, Mining & Natural Gas. When it comes to fugitive emissions NG comes a poor third. There is no requirement when drilling Agricultural water bores to identify the gas and water zones or a requirement to isolate the gas zones. This is why TV shows farmers igniting gas from their kitchen tap. Some wells in NSW which I studied have been emitting gas for over 50 years.
            Fracking. So many government, university inquires have concluded it is safe. But the real proof is litigation. The technology is over 150 years old [Col Roberts 1865] and no Fracking company has ever been sued. When an oil company does environmental damage the litigation is unrelenting [Eg BP Gulf of Mexico] Remember the guy in gaslands [lighting up the kitchen sink] no lawyer would help him out. Reason it was biogenic gas flowing out of his tap not the thermogenic gas the gas company was producing. It’s his water bore – not identifying or isolating the gas.

          • Alastair Leith 3 years ago

            “My criticism is that we introduced renewables without thought to what happens when the sun is no shining and no wind. ”

            Er, we did? On the NEM RE is around 17%, CSIRO says 50% penetration is trivial and presents no challenge to grid resilience or security. In fact Wind can do primary frequency response and inertia cheaper and better than coal if it’s fitted with the right technology (which they fit as a matter of course in TExas because it’s mandatory, and now is in SA).

            You know what did happen with RE in this country? Tony Abbott that’s what. He rolled Turnbull in opposition chiefly around energy policy and white anted RE in this country since, with gentailers in gushing support and emboldened to not sign PPAs with wind and solar for years hence. We’re still suffering the effects today. And his support from forked toungue business, industry and manufacturing lobby groups hasn’t help one bit to have cheaper energy prices, quite the opposite and some of them now seem to realise the mistake they made opposing carbon pricing and the RET.

          • Don McMillan 3 years ago

            When I woke up this morning the electricity price QLD I was about $60 [5am] now it is $161 [7:40am]. No energy dependent business can operate and remain competitive with this uncertainty.

  6. david H 3 years ago

    “We need an intensive effort around planning. Time is short.”
    If we de-couple the politics of climate change from the equation and just focus on cheap reliable electricity to replace the old coal fired generators, all the evidence says renewables is the only solution – It shouldn’t be that hard even for the hard headed politicians to get it.
    Two sayings come to mind:
    “Rome burns while Nero fiddles” and “Piss poor planning = piss poor performance!”

    • Jordan Moulds 3 years ago

      The trouble is that the “skeptic” politicians don’t reject climate change because they genuinely have a problem with the science, they reject climate change because to accept it means that you need to action to avert it – by switching to clean renewables & putting a cost on carbon. They are paid handsomely by mining companies to oppose this – and oppose they do. Taking climate change out of the picture is not going to magically solve that problem, because the mining interests their campaigns are shackled too won’t ever allow renewables without a fight, as it directly affects their business.

  7. George Michaelson 3 years ago

    What might the additions to transmission networks look like? Whats a resilient way to form the extra links, and whats the (plausible) cheap way?

    I am keen to see a distribution of wind and solar which will knock into the corner the bugbear of ‘entirely flat days’ -the more diversity in locations we add, the less likely it is any one point is knocked out as well as all the others due to cloud cover or still air.

    • Alastair Leith 3 years ago

      You can use a tool like SIREN to see what the generation patterns in different locations are. Locate any turbine on the market in any place you like, or PV or solarCST.

  8. Marg1 3 years ago

    Transgrid should tell Malcolm and the other neanderthals in the LNP this.

  9. Miles Harding 3 years ago

    I’m not sure the savings will be as great as they caim. The final 10 ro 20% is likely to be more expensive, as the renewable resources are overbuilt to reduce the frequency of shortfalls that have to be made up by gas turbines, possibly burning bio-oil.

    In any case, the first 80 or 90 %is an enormous improvement over where we are now.

    From a balace of payments point of view, a rapid transiton away from oil in transport (just ignore those idiots running the big oil catrels) would go a long way balancing the payments for the impoted hardware and improve the nations resilience.

    • Alastair Leith 3 years ago

      Agree, lets get to 90% and then work out how to do the last 10%. By then we’ll be adding demand for electrification of transport systems, industrial processes and buildings currently using fossil gas for space and water heating. But also reducing demand through EE programs and ever less energy demanding products.

  10. Ian 3 years ago

    Time is short for the grid. The longer grid prices stay high the quicker will distributed S&S increase. Since renewables generation is dirt-cheap and wind and hydro complimentary to distributed solar, trans grid is right to want a 100% renewables grid, with the transmission lines to connect it all. They will need, however, to get rid off the ‘administrative’ bloat that so vastly inflates grid prices. Grid electricity has got to match average S&S prices to be competitive, time is short for them to do some serious discounting.Once people have invested in off-grid capabilities, they are unlikely to go back to grid electricity, even if grid electricity becomes cheaper that behind the meter electricity, simply because they have already bought their off-grid capable systems.

  11. Alastair Leith 3 years ago

    “We are seeing very much the start of the transition,” Meehan said. “We have got 1,000MW in wind and solar under construction as we speak. The transition is underway ….. but we need to facilitate a lot more, we need an intensive effort around planning. Time is short.”

    This sense of urgency — from a Public Utility manager no less — is fantastically encouraging and if more people in positions of influence like Meehan start to communicate these facts and the sense of urgency that climate change insists on then just perhaps Ministers of Mistruths like Josh Frydenberg will have no place to hide.

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