17 July 2018

AEMO’s new electricity plan is neither a death knell nor a shot in the arm for coal

Beholders of the Australian Energy Market Operator’s (AEMO) Integrated System Plan (ISP) see different futures for coal-fired generation: it’s either on the way out; or it’s going to be needed for decades; or perhaps even new coal plants should be built.

13 July 2018

Policy overload: why the ACCC says household solar subsidies should be abolished

The keenly awaited report on retail electricity prices, released this week by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), has made some controversial recommendations – not least the call to wind up the scheme that offers incentives for household solar nearly ten years early.

12 July 2018

Argument for subsidies has no power in economic merit based world

Australians need energy policy that is driven by neither green evangelism for renewables nor a deep-seated fear to protect the role of coal for baseload power.

12 July 2018

The ACCC has produced vital ammunition to reform energy

On Wednesday, the ACCC released its highly anticipated report on electricity affordability. This report complements the Finkel blueprint that focused on reliability and security and the National Energy Guarantee (NEG) that integrates energy and climate policy. The ACCC concludes that the National Electricity Market (NEM) has not worked for consumers and must be reset. It is unsparing in its criticism of the market participants, governments and the regulatory bodies. Its recommendations will leave none of them untouched.

2 July 2018

Higher energy prices are here to stay – here’s what we can do about it

The good news is that after two years of big rises, wholesale electricity prices have fallen somewhat since mid-2017. The bad news is that prices are still much higher than they have been for most of the past 20 years. And the worse news is that we had better get used to these high prices.

1 July 2018

Why politicians have to stop promising to cut electricity prices

Australian households and businesses are waiting with intense frustration for governments to fix the problem of high energy prices. But they will not easily forgive the same governments for more blackouts, or for failing to confront the challenge of climate change. Herein lies the trilemma for governments and the reason for the intense policy debate on the National Energy Guarantee (NEG).

18 June 2018

There is no Plan B if the states fail to approve the NEG

The National Energy Guarantee is not perfect, but it offers a credible, low-cost path to meeting Australia’s emissions reduction target while maintaining a reliable power supply. Critics have demonstrated no fatal flaws and have failed to present a credible alternative.

14 May 2018

Finkel Review and the future market

CEDA has selected an address by Grattan’s Energy Program Director Tony Wood as one of its Top 10 speeches on energy policy over the past decade. The speech, delivered in June 2017, highlighted the importance of the Finkel Energy Review, beyond its headline-attracting call for a Clean Energy Target.

9 May 2018

Budget 2018 was old news for energy policy – the next big headlines won’t come until July

As with many previous budgets, matters relating to energy and climate change were relegated to little more than a footnote in Treasurer Scott Morrison’s 2018 budget speech. And even the contents of that footnote told us nothing new.

19 April 2018

Energy ministers must beware the power of conflicts of interest

A well-designed National Energy Guarantee (NEG) for Australia will include a world-first integration of energy and climate change policy. It will deliver reliable and affordable energy as we make the transition to a low-emissions energy future. Yet the challenges ahead will test the skills of even such an energetic politician as Energy Minister Josh Frydenberg.

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