Level 22

North Sydney, Australia
North Sydney, Australia
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Nelson T.,Level 22 | Nelson J.,Level 22 | Ariyaratnam J.,Level 22 | Camroux S.,Level 22
Energy Policy | Year: 2013

In 2001, Australia introduced legislation requiring investment in new renewable electricity generating capacity. The legislation was significantly expanded in 2009 to give effect to a 20% Renewable Energy Target (RET). Importantly, the policy was introduced with bipartisan support and is consistent with global policy trends. In this article, we examine the history of the policy and establish that the 'stop/start' nature of renewable policy development has resulted in investors withholding new capital until greater certainty is provided. We utilise the methodology from Simshauser and Nelson (2012) to examine whether capital market efficiency losses would occur under certain policy scenarios. The results show that electricity costs would increase by between $51 million and $119 million if the large-scale RET is abandoned even after accounting for avoided renewable costs. Our conclusions are clear: we find that policymakers should be guided by a high level public policy principle in relation to large-scale renewable energy policy: constant review is not reform. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.

Nelson T.,Level 22 | Orton F.,Level 22
Energy Economics | Year: 2013

Electricity pricing has traditionally been based on average cost pricing where consumers pay a 'flat' tariff based upon the average cost of production and transportation of electricity. The introduction of new 'smart' meters allows electricity providers to differentiate tariffs on the basis of time. Utilising congestion pricing theory, the energy industry has embraced 'time-of-use' (ToU) tariffs with a view to more efficiently pricing electricity. This paper demonstrates that pricing as a function of demand variability (reflecting capacity utilisation) is a more appropriate alternative to existing ToU tariffs for more efficiently allocating costs to end users. We call this new alternative pricing model 'first derivative ratio' FDR pricing. This new approach to congestion pricing could be applied to markets other than electricity, such as road transportation. © 2013 Elsevier B.V.

Energy-only markets are prone to the Resource Adequacy problem, i.e. the timely entry of new plant. The reason for this is that competitive energy-only markets struggle to be remunerative given reliability constraints and market price caps. Historically, Australia's 45,000. MW National Electricity Market has managed to navigate this well understood problem, albeit with government entities directly or indirectly responsible for a surprisingly large 73% of all new plant investments to 2007. But government involvement in direct investment has now ceased. So what will enable the industry to navigate the Resource Adequacy problem into the future? Quite simply, industrial organisation, the presence of merchant utilities with investment-grade credit ratings and setting any regulated retail prices or 'price to beat' with an LRMC floor. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd.

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