ARENA conducting energy security tests

electricity prices

The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) will be conducting a three year pilot in South Australia and Victoria to temporarily free up energy supply during extreme weather and unplanned outages.

The pilot demand response initiative will aim to trial 100 megawatts of demand response capacity by this December, with the potential for demand response to be scaled up in the next few years.

‘Demand response’ involves paying consumers to reduce their energy consumption on request during peak periods, extreme weather or other emergencies, helping to avoid blackouts.

The Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) and ARENA are consulting with energy industry stakeholders on the proposed program. Participants at ARENA’s A-Lab workshop will help ARENA and AEMO design a program that tests the capabilities of demand side resources.

“A key outcome of the proposed ARENA demand response program is that it will assist in identifying options to support the electricity system to manage peak demand in real-time,” said environment and energy minister Josh Frydenberg.

“This initiative will inform any regulatory changes that are needed for demand response to be an option in the long term.

“The initiative is in line with the government’s commitment to delivering affordable and reliable electricity as we transition to a lower emissions future and could be used to reduce costs around network infrastructure.”