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News & insights

Date: April 2024 | Client: AEMC | Sector: Energy | Energy markets | Energy retail & consumers | Expertise: Public policy & strategy

AEMC forum sets the stage for a consumer driven future

The Connecting Policy and Research Forum, held by the Australian Energy Market Commission on 8 April 24, shone a spotlight on the evolution of distribution tariffs, services, and regulations in the context of a consumer-driven future. The conference brought together academic and policy practitioners to explore the critical role that researchers can play in shaping the future of the energy sector and featured a distinguished lineup of guest speakers, that included;

  • Paul Simshauser, Chief Executive of Powerlink, who shared his extensive expertise around network tariffs.
  • Lachlan Blackhall, Deputy Vice-Chancellor at The Australian National University, who spoke about the techno-economical aspects of distribution.
  • Darryl Biggar, Senior Advisor at CEPA, who asked the question - does the energy transition require an overhaul of the regulatory framework for electricity networks?
  • Sandra Gamble, Independent Chair at Marinus Link, who raised how we disrupt the status quo & allow markets to evolve.

Saying that "Just as our early ancestors adapted to changing conditions, passing on their best attributes while developing new tools and behaviours, distribution networks must evolve to meet the demands of a rapidly changing energy landscape.", AEMC Chief Executive Benn Barr emphasised that the conference theme, ‘’Distribution Evolution – tariffs, services and regulations for a consumer-driven future,’’ drew thought-provoking parallels between the evolution of technology and the anticipated changes in distribution networks.

Highlighting that "the 2024 draft Integrated System Plan forecasts that by 2050, consumer energy resources will supply a staggering 45% of total capacity and 50% of dispatchable capacity in the national electricity market." Mr Barr suggested: "This capacity will sit on the distribution network, causing dramatic shifts in how households and small businesses manage their energy use and what they expect from the network. These changes will require adaptations in the services that networks offer, how they interact with retailers and customers through tariffs and other incentives, and how they are regulated to ensure alignment among all parties in the value stream,"

CEPA looks forward to its continued collaboration with the AEMC to help shape the future of the energy sector in Australia.

To find out more, please contact our experts listed below.

Darryl Biggar
Senior Advisor Australia