July 27, 2018 Read More →

Australian regulators give big boost to batteries, demand response

Renew Economy:

Tesla and other proponents of virtual power plants and demand management schemes have scored a significant win after the country’s main energy market rule maker gave its support to the idea that they can compete freely on the wholesale electricity market.

The decision announced by the Australian Energy Market Commission on Thursday is likely to encourage new players in the market to aggregate solar and battery storage installed in homes and businesses, as well as load controls, in a major shift to the way demand and supply is managed.

It is also likely to encourage proponents of technologies that would manage the charging of electric vehicles, and the use of their combined battery capacity in the grid, and it could encourage peer-to-peer trading.

In short, it means that customers with battery storage and electric vehicles can strike contracts with providers other than their main retailers to provide power to the grid when needed. It sets a signal that the Australian grid is finally moving to embrace 21st century technologies.

That said, the AEMC – after years of deliberation and after initially rejecting the idea – has only given approval in principle. The idea still awaits a specific rule request that will likely repeat the battle between the proponents of new technologies, and those locked in the past.

The decision by the AEMC in its Reliability Frameworks Review shapes up a major victory for the likes to Tesla, sonnen, Simec Zen, Reposit, Redback, Sunverge, and others who have argued for the development of “virtual power plants”. These are essentially rooftop solar and battery storage installations located “behind the meter” in homes and businesses which are connected by software. These “distributed energy resources” can be harnessed to help moderate prices and meet demand peaks.

More: Win for Tesla, batteries, EVs and smart tech in Australian grid

 

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