The AEMC-established technical working group on grid access reform held its eighth meeting last week on the approach and methodology for modelling the net benefits of grid access reform in the national electricity market (NEM). 

The technical working group is a key part of the grid access reform work the AEMC is leading as part of the Energy Security Board’s post 2025 market design process. This work is fundamental to better integrating new technologies into the national grid. Reforming grid access is crucial to ensuring the rapid change in Australia’s power system is cheaper, faster and fairer across the board. 

During the course of the year, we are working with stakeholders to inform our thinking as we refine the model for access reform. This work has emerged from the AEMC’s Coordination of Generation and Transmission Investment (COGATI) review.

In January this year the AEMC commissioned NERA Economic Consulting to evaluate the net benefits of grid access reform in the NEM. This work is to be done in two stages:

  • Stage one: An assessment of the net benefits of grid access reform as applied in a number of international jurisdictions. 
  • Stage two: detailed modelling of the net benefits of the reforms as applied to the NEM

Stage one has been completed and was the subject of a report and public forum held on the 29 May. 

Stage two, detailed bottom up modelling of the NEM, is now under way. This technical working group session was held to help inform the methodology used and to provide market participants with an opportunity to provide input and insight from their experience of operations, investment and analysis of the NEM.  

NERA provided an overview of their approach to the modelling and an outline of the methodology to be used in assessing the impact of grid access reform on key elements of the operation of the NEM and investment in new infrastructure over time. 

At the meeting the group discussed:

  • An overview of the approach to the modelling, including the set-up of the models to be used and the key assumptions. 
  • The approach to modelling the impact of access reform on the efficiency of dispatch
  • The approach to modelling the impact on the efficiency of investment in generation and storage
  • The approach to modelling the impact on the efficiency of investment in transmission

Discussion notes  from the technical working group are now available. A record of questions asked at the technical working group will also be forwarded to TWG members. 

Some of the key points raised by participants are now being considered by NERA and the AEMC. A subsequent public forum will address the draft results and outcomes of this analysis later in the year.  Stakeholders are encouraged to register for this public forum on the AEMC website once registrations open. 

The technical working group includes representatives from consumer groups, energy investors, large consumers, generators, transmission businesses, retailers, the Energy Security Board and market bodies. The group has also now expanded to include members of the ESB technical working group on the post 2025 market design process. 

Anyone who would like to meet with us to discuss the technical working group and the issues and questions raised can contact Russell Pendlebury

Media: Kellie Bisset, Media and Content Manager, 0438 490 041 or (02) 8296 7813