Yes, we've all noticed. Some of Australia's politicians are not taking science based positions on Australia's energy supply as we lurch from crisis to crisis. They've been openly fondling lumps of coal as if fossil fuel is not a 19th century technology. They are rejecting 21st century energy solutions. Australia should be a global leader in the fight against global warming and climate change. Just ask energy billionaire Elon Musk who recently offered to step in and solve the energy crisis Australia is currently facing. Instead, Australia continues to subsidise the coal industry, which is a major threat to the Great Barrier Reef as well as our agricultural land. But the market is overtaking the fossils. TEC has worked for years to encourage the growth of a solar and wind friendly energy supply system. We’ve also campaigned hard to popularise energy efficiency. And we’ve lobbied doggedly to reform the National Electricity Market (NEM) which employs a set of laws that have protected polluting power. So what are we up to now?
Change is happening!
A revolution is transforming Australian homes. While the political debate about energy security goes nowhere, on-site battery storage is sweeping through the middle ground, making it possible for every Australian family and business to adopt green energy and become less reliant on the current dirty grid of the National Energy Market (NEM).
Innovative battery technology means we can manage the fluctuations of wind and solar power to create sustainable supply for all. But there are risks to this new and complex market. While sales of home and grid-scale batteries are booming, we could face massive price rises for years to come IF the electricity networks are allowed to to dominate the battery market. TEC believes the risks of investment must be shared fairly.
What We Do
Consumer Support: TEC invented the popular Green Electricity Guide website which ranks retailers’ green energy activity. I is being updated right now.
Energy Market Reform: The energy market is governed by rules which seriously need updating to address the swiftly changing energy landscape. TEC has proposed a rule change to encourage networks to reduce peak demand and gold-plating. We are also the proponent of a rule change to reduce network charges for local use of the network.
TEC also compiled a group submission to the Finkel Review that was adopted and will result in a reinterpretation of the national electricity objective to better integrate decarbonisation targets.
Battery Storage: TEC is developing a position with other energy consumer groups on the regulation of the battery market, using a grant from Energy Consumers Australia. Essentially, we propose that networks should be kept out of the home battery market altogether and be required to buy grid-side battery services annually through the competitive market. We are taking this position into various rule changes and other reforms in 2017.
The result of our Networks + Batteries - What's Best For Consumers? project are now in. Despite dithering in the Federal government, and the wholesale rejection of advice contained in the commissioned report by Australia's chief scientist Alan Finkel, the sector has exploded with a range of government, retailer and other private projects. The range of business cases and value streams has likewise increased greatly. For more read the Battery Boom Bulletin Board.
Australia’s first community energy retailer, Enova Energy was created from a grant auspiced by TEC.
We are also the Convenor of the North Coast Energy Forum, and a founding member of the Coalition for Community Energy.
Recently TEC intervened in a Federal Court case which prevented SA Power Networks introducing a tariff that would have discriminated against solar owners.
What You Can Do: