The newly appointed head of the Australian Energy Market Operator says he wants the country’s main grids to be able to handle periods of 100 per cent renewable energy penetration by 2025.
In his first speech since taking up the role in mid-May, Daniel Westerman will plead for the industry to work together, and will say his aim is to harness the talents, capabilities, experience and know-how to engineer grids that are capable of running at 100% instantaneous penetration of renewable energy.
“This is unchartered territory for a large, independent grid anywhere in the world,” Westerman will tell an event hosted by CEDA in Melbourne on Wednesday.
Westerman’s comments are significant because just a year ago AEMO was talking in terms of handling up to 75 per cent “instant” renewables, and warning that it would have to cap wind and solar at levels below that without proper preparation. AEMO’s control room already regularly sees levels of 52 per cent instantaneous wind and solar in the National Electricity Market, and has seen 65 per cent in Western Australia, which has a separate grid.