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Renewables gathering pace

The Clean Energy Regulator has provided its monthly update on renewables progress in Australia. An anaemic 3MW of new accredited projects in September appears to be a temporary lull likely affected by COVID constraints on construction and similar activities. In the two prospective categories of “committed and “probable”. Committed projects are defined as those that …

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The storage wars cometh

Electricity has hosted some of the biggest technology rivalries in modern history: Edison and direct current vs Tesla and alternating current, Gates and Microsoft vs Jobs and Apple. Now the stage is set for the latest duel between bitter rivals: Yu and hydrogen versus Musk and lithium ion. Who is Yu? We’ll get to that …

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Capital punishment

One of the key reforms arising from the Finkel review was the introduction of the integrated system plan (ISP). By mapping out some plausible scenarios for changes in electricity use and the generation mix over the next few decades, the market operator (AEMO) was able to identify a business case for several large scale transmission …

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A tale of two coal plants

This morning’s news showed the contrasting fortunes of two of the NEM’s coal plant owners. While Trevor St Baker’s Delta was celebrating the Morrison government’s largesse in supporting an upgrade of his Vales Point coal plant in NSW, the AGL Board was nursing a black eye from a shareholder resolution to accelerate the closure of …

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Does voluntary abatement really work? Computer says no…

Former NSW Premier Jack Lang famously once said: “in the race of life always back self-interest – at least you know it’s trying”. The recent King Review of the Federal Government’s Emissions Reduction Fund (ERF) suggested increasing capability of voluntary action by companies to deliver further emissions reduction in Australia. Voluntary abatement was proffered as …

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It’s a gas gas gas

The latest in a series of reports from Australia’s peak gas industry bodies makes the case for low and zero carbon gas playing a key role in decarbonising the Australian energy sector. The gas collective commissioned Frontier Economics to model three ways to decarbonise: full electrification; renewable fuels (hydrogen and biogas) and zero-carbon fuels (as …

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Is this the end of central planning in the NEM, or just the beginning?

It says a lot about her nearly four-year stint in charge of the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) that the resignation of Managing Director Audrey Zibelman will be despaired by some and cheered by others. Zibelman has been a divisive and politically charged figure during her time at AEMO. To some she was a visionary, …

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