Reliability of wind energy not threatened by historical SA blackout case

Andrew Bray on ABC TV next to Angus Taylor:

Andrew Bray on ABC Australia-wide radio:

Reliability of wind energy not threatened by historical SA blackout case.

7 AUGUST 2019

“Wind energy is one of Australia’s most reliable energy sources and was not to blame for the 2016 South Australian blackout.” The Australian Wind Alliance said today.

Court proceedings by the Australian Energy Regulator (AER) over the 2016 South Australian blackout have no bearing on today’s reliable, renewables-rich energy grid.

“A once in 50-year storm saw power line and transmission damage around the state, including fossil fuel generation failure and an overloaded interconnector with Victoria. The case is a very technical issue, relevant mainly to the 2016 energy grid.”

“Wind energy a reliable, growing part of Australia’s energy grid and will even overtake brown coal energy generation in the next 2-3 years.”

Australian Wind Alliance National Coordinator, Andrew Bray had this to say: “This is a historical case that looks back at how the market operator worked with wind farms three years ago. It doesn’t reflect the way the system works today,” 

“Since the blackout, the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) have implemented 19 separate actions to enhance power system security and improve the way they manage catastrophic storms like the one that hit South Australia on September 2016.

“Wind turbines are very reliable hardware but AEMO had no requirement for wind turbine software to manage multiple system faults in a short period of time. AEMO have since rectified that requirement.”

“It’s fair to say that AEMO has been on a learning curve. Once-in-a-lifetime storms such as the one we witnessed in South Australia three years ago are something grid operators around the world are now having to plan for.”

“Today, our ageing coal fleet is proving increasing unreliable, already suffering 50 breakdowns in 2019, while continuing to pump climate-damaging emissions into our atmosphere that fuel storms like the one we saw in South Australia.”

“If we are serious about building a resilient, cost-effective grid, the government should be investing in new transmission infrastructure, like an interconnector between SA and NSW, and getting serious about a clear plan to phase out coal power.”

Please contact Matthew Curry, the Australian Wind Alliance’s Communications Coordinator on 0407 914 848 for more information, or to arrange an interview.


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