The NSW Government today announced it is directing the Consumer Trustee to run a new tender under the NSW Electricity Infrastructure Roadmap to ensure the State has the firming infrastructure it needs to provide cheap, clean and reliable energy well into the future.
Minister for Energy Matt Kean said that the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) has projected increased electricity demand over the coming years, driven by more electric vehicles, electrification of homes and businesses and updates to other inputs and assumptions in their Energy Security Target Monitor Report, meaning more firming infrastructure is required to keep the grid reliable.
“NSW has the most ambitious renewable energy policy anywhere in the country, helping to replace ageing coal fired power stations and reach net zero emissions,” Mr Kean said.
“Firming infrastructure is needed alongside renewable energy infrastructure to balance the grid, helping to keep the lights on when it isn’t sunny or windy, or when there is high demand.”
“The firming tender will be open to all technology types, but projects will be required to have an emissions intensity lower than the most recent NSW grid average and achieve net zero scope 1 emissions by 2035.”
The Consumer Trustee, AEMO Services, will now prepare an Infrastructure Investment Objectives Report to determine the size and timing of tenders, to ensure reliable energy while minimising costs to consumers.
Following the finalisation of AEMO’s 2022 Integrated System Plan and the Energy Security Target Monitor Report, the NSW Office of Energy and Climate Change anticipates that at least 350MW of firming infrastructure will be required within the Sydney-Newcastle-Wollongong sub-region, however the final size of the tender will be determined by the independent Consumer Trustee.