On September 28 we had the first anniversary of the dirty big storm the brought down the power pylons in South Australia causing a state-wide blackout, as the Heywood interconnector exceeded capacity and tripped.
Mr Vesey spent the bulk of his address explaining how AGL would replace the capacity lost at Liddell, including new wind and solar farms, up to 750 megawatts of new gas-fired plants and a 100-megawatt upgrade to the more modern and larger Bayswater coal plant nearby. A 250 MW battery at Liddell and demand response will also come into play, he said.
The AFR reports that Josh Frydenberg and Labor’s Mark Butler had a bit of a love-in when they shared a platform late last month. Ben Potter said they were peas in an energy pod.
Frydenberg waxed lyrical about the shrinking cost of solar photovoltaic – from $1.6 per kilowatt installed in 2014 to 19 cents per kilowatt last year. Battery storage has also halved in cost and added half as much capacity again in just five years, he enthused, and “demand response” – where customers curtail their usage or offer their batteries and smart appliances to the grid during demand spikes to avert blackouts – has an “incredibly” important role.
Butler took his cue, noting that the system is undergoing a “massive, profound and irresistible transition which will just continue whether we like it or not”.