The Gold Plating of the distribution network was known some time ago. I saw a graph in the SMH the other day ago comparing our electricity prices to comparable economies and we came out OK. The main problem is our low population and large land mass making distribution of electricity expensive.
...But somehow MT and BS have convinced many of us the pathway forward is to close down even more coal power stations and replace them with the very technology that has driven up prices. Still intent on pinning it on renewables
Unfortunately there is a very large number of lemmings that are walking into the BS/ALP light beling both power prices and wages will be better under him which is akin to Queen Cersi asking the North to join her at the dinner table!!!
The ACCC released its report into Retail Electricity Prices. Doesn't really fit in with Abbott & Co's anti-renewables agenda so I guess they need to discredit the ACCC now.
"Price increased blamed on 'gold plating' of networks
Mr Sims told AM the ACCC's report showed that so-called "gold plating" was the biggest factor behind the power price increases.
The practice allows power companies to pass through the cost of investing in poles and wires to consumers, encouraging costly over-investment."
Maybe the huge east coast network was not such a great idea and a more local network may have been cheaper.
The other issue is that electricity prices were kept artificially low under public ownership to buy votes. Maybe the public owners had no real idea how much it was costing to produce power from their respective generators.
Privatisation changed all of that and cost have blown out exacerbated by life expired power stations.With no new units coming on line it is highly unlikely private money will invest in coal fired power stations that will not come on stream for years. Hence private money will want to invest in cheaper and quicker to build re-newables.
The Gold Plating is one thing and most of the work was completed in recent years and therefore its impact on the grid prices should be constant, yet its rising? Why?
Last month, $500m of govt subsidised solar power that has an output of less than 2% of Liddel annually was annouced, one of the two projects went to AGL (owners of Liddel), the other to a project owned by KSA. Do the maths and work out how much each MW really costs?
The extended network from CQ to Adelaide and Tas has its advantages and enables power to be more easily from regions where power is surplus. ie BAsslink helps balance the peak in the grid. Wind and solar provide peaks and troughs and needs to be accounted for and dealing better with major failures. Also areas of high demand due to extreme weather.
Agree, up until 2010 at least power prices were too low to justify building new capacity and hence little was (from people in the industry). Then along came CO2 tax and loss of govt support to build new. The aging plants sold to the private sector were given upgrades not replacements are previously planned by the govt, ie Hazellwood. Then along came subsidized RE power schemes, starting with domestic roof top PV solar which is ultimately paid for by all.
As the grid supply and demand started to balance, TA cut govt support (read subsidy) for RE, so construction stopped/slowed, but did not push it back the other way to make feasible to build coal and then got replaced with the Greens favorite PM.
On current prices its is more than viable to build coal, it takes 3 years from start of construction to first units coming on line, its late to start now, but not too late. While some will argue against coal because banks won't lend them the money, issue is banks are lending money to build coal fired power stations world wide.
ie Dubai http://www.power-technology.com/projects/hassyan-clean-coal-project-dubai
Read the part where it says contracted to supply at US$0.05/kWh.
That's A$60/MWH using Australian Coal!!!!
Price is 24/7/365, they will use the existing gas power stations to match the variation in the grid load.
They also use the waste heat to desal water for the city.
The Australian govt is preventing the banks from lending the money under fear of CO2 tax or other repercussion.
To solve the power problem
- You need to force the RE suppliers to bid guaranteed supply.
- Remove any repercussion threat on bank fiance for a coal fired power station
- Remove subsidises on RE power.
Blaming it all on the Gold plating of the grid is BS if the power stations are flat just keeping the lights on.
Why is the govt working so hard to sign up people and companies willing to cut demand when the grid gets loaded? This is nothing to do with the grid!