The AEMC held a public forum in Sydney on 4 May on a proposed fundamental change to the national electricity market’s design – changing the settlement period for the wholesale electricity spot price from 30 minutes to five minutes.

A recording of the webcast is now available on our website, as well as a transcript.

Consideration of this important rule change proposal rests on the need for price signals that help drive investment in generation, not only using the technologies of today, but the technologies of the future. This forum was part of the project’s consultation on evidence for and against moving to five minute settlement.

The request, from Queensland zinc refinery Sun Metals, would signal more accurately the value to consumers of fast response technologies, such as aggregating distributed storage, new generation gas peaker plants and rapid demand response, which are needed to support the increasing penetration of intermittent wind and solar generation in the sector.

The forum, which featured presentations by a diverse range of stakeholders, was an opportunity for stakeholders to provide feedback on the AEMC’s recently released directions paper, in particular the Commission's views on:

  • the costs and benefits of changing the settlement period for the electricity spot price from 30 minutes to five minutes
  • a proposed three year transition period, if the change were to be made.

The Commission outlined its initial support for the rule change request based on the fact that five minute settlement would provide a more accurate, technology-neutral price signal that reflects consumer demand.

The AEMC aims for market and regulatory arrangements that adjust to whatever the future brings, and that enable consumer choices to drive the way the sector develops, the technologies that get deployed and the business models that succeed.

Stakeholder input, through public forums, submissions, meetings and other engagement with the AEMC is crucial in informing the Commission’s analysis and rule changes. The AEMC will consider the views presented at the forum and comments from webcast participants. We also encourage submissions on the directions paper by 18 May 2017.

The draft determination is due to be published on 4 July 2017.

Media: Bronwyn Rosser 02 8296 7847 or 0423 280 341