The AEMC has made a submission to the Economics and Industry Standing Committee of the Western Australian Parliament on its inquiry into microgrids and associated technologies in Western Australia.
The Committee is investigating the emergence and impact of microgrids and other types of standalone power systems that are not connected to Western Australia’s main electricity grid. Changes in technology mean that microgrids are becoming an increasingly viable option for providing electricity services to customers, particularly where the costs of providing of a grid-connected service might be high, for example in remote areas.
While the AEMC does not make rules for the wholesale electricity market (WEM) that applies in south-western Western Australia, the Commission notes that the issues associated with microgrids and stand-alone power systems appear similar across the national electricity market (NEM) and the WEM.
The AEMC’s submission to the WA inquiry highlights our work on off-grid systems and standalone power systems, particularly our current review into the regulatory frameworks for standalone power systems. We have been consulting extensively by meeting stakeholders across Australia and through publication of an issues paper for stakeholder feedback.
As part of our review, the Commission will recommend appropriate regulatory arrangements that allow standalone power systems to be used where it is economically efficient to do so, while maintaining appropriate consumer protections and service standards.
The Commission looks forward to sharing the progress of its review with the Western Australian Parliamentary Committee. We will publish a draft report on the standalone systems review in December 2018.
Media: Bronwyn Rosser, Communications Specialist, (02) 8296 7847; 0423 280 341; firstname.lastname@example.org