Category Archives: Renewable Energy

Why is Tasmanian wholesale electricity price the highest in the NEM?

My chart of 10 day smoothed daily AEMO prices shows that Tasmania has been the NEM price pusher for over a month now and was also near the top of the price skein through much of 2017.
My attention was guided to Tasmania by seeing our PM on TV news offering Commonwealth largesse in Hobart and he mentioned Tasmanian renewable energy and the “Battery of the Nation” project that he seems smitten by. Note there is a State election looming and the Liberal Govt is behind in polls. “Battery of the Nation” seems to be a scheme for the State to bludge more money out of Canberra to increase wind power, pumped hydro and general hydro. Facts are Tasmania is a large importer of power now with average net imports of 5,761 MWhrs per day which is ~23% of demand (see figures in Table for Mar and Apr 2017).

So a fiscally sensible Fed. Govt. would say to Tasmania – look you are big importers of electricity now so you are far from being the “Battery of the Nation” in fact you are one of the “bludgers of the Nation”. Contact us again when you develop your own projects and your electricity supply situation is near import/export neutral.
I am trying to get data for all 2017. Does anybody have costings for the “Battery of the Nation” boondoggle which is probably on a par with Snowy 2.0 in the $5 to 10Bn range of extra Commonwealth debt.

Electricity AEMO wholesale prices good news

This Christmas-New Year there has not been a huge synchronised price hike across the eastern States like there was last year – that is the good news. With a hot weekend on us gas prices have spiked – PM should pick up the phone again. The general decline in prices after summer demand passed has been helped by the PM and Ministers yakking the subject but they need to keep talking this year. Good news could be improved if the Feds took over Liddell to ensure that asset could be productive for as long as economically possible in the national interest. Not remaining a plaything of the interest of AGL.
A puzzling feature of my price chart is that tiddler Tasmania with all their hydro is so often the price pusher – why is this so? My suspicion is that the answer is related to their monster hydro debt but whatever – they should be put back in their box. AEMO and NemWatch – Large version chart.

ANAO torpedoes Kevin Rudd’s Clean Coal & CCS after $450Mill spent

We canned “CCS” years ago when it was deserved. Video memories and Puzzle of the missing cap rock But it is interesting that near a decade after Kev747 kicked off his Global CCS Institute – CO2 from Vic coal fired electricity (CarbonNet Project) apparently can not be pumped into nearby empty oil and gas reservoirs in Bass Strait where there must be many pipelines and wells already in place. What the hell do public servants do?
CO2 can be pumped into mature petroleum wells to maximise recovery – EOR = Enhanced Oil Recovery. Google – enhanced oil recovery (eor) techniques – Aust. Nat. Audit Office report scroll down here to 12 Dec 17
More info on CCS projects check out the Road Map.

World bank getting out of fossil fuel exploration

A bit of show for the One Planet Summit and nosh up in Paris called by Macron. The vast majority of global oilex funds would be from the oil majors. The sum involved said to be about a $Bn would be chickenfeed compared to the drop in oil exploration post the 2014 oil price crash. I read where global rig numbers have halved. All that said it does add to the ever present GreenLeft lawfare and idiot Govt actions against the use of fossil fuels.

Hey Ross Garnaut SA power prices fell because gas prices fell

I checked gas and electricity wholesale prices data for 2017 and the claim in the AFR Monday – South Australia’s power now cheaper than coal-fired states – Ross Garnaut
Any notion that this is due to some triumph of wind power fails to examine the dominant driver of SA electricity which is gas. The main sources of dispatchable electricity for SA are the Adelaide gas fired power stations. Then there are the interconnectors drawing on Vic coal fired power.

The three large States which are all dominated by coal fired power are all seeing reduced wholesale prices in 2017 as the Feds and Prime Minister attack high power prices.

Updated chart AEMO wholesale electricity daily prices

For what it is worth there has been a divergence last month with SA, VIC and Tas reducing in price. NSW reducing a little and Qld now more expensive than NSW.

AEMO source data – AEMO NEM Dispatch OverviewNemWatch is useful as a snapshot of generation type and demand. There was more wind in September than August but October started with a wind-drought. Large vers chart

AEMO schedules Liddell generation but AGL regards Liddell as worthless junk

There appears to be a huge disconnect here. AEMO schedules 1800MW from Liddell for the next five summers screenshot from AEMO NSW xlsx file.

Yet if you Google “agl liddell” you see a plethora of AGL statements such as.
Liddell power station is “Geriatric” says AGL –
Liddell power station on ‘sliding scale to oblivion’, AGL ays –
AGL has said it is “fighting a losing battle”…at its ageing Liddell power station –
Liddell power station in NSW is seen by its owner as ready to close –
AGL faces a huge daily challenge to keep Liddell coal-fired power station running –
OK, you get the impression. No wonder AGL values Liddell at $0.
Let us get back to the huge disconnect I referred to. Does AGL say one thing to the media and another to AEMO? Or does AEMO just invent scheduled numbers for Liddell? Is there any obligation on AGL to tell the truth to AEMO?