AEMC seeks views on governance of DER standards

The AEMC is looking at the governance arrangements for setting the technical standards that apply to distributed energy resources (DER) in the national electricity market (NEM).

Rooftop solar 21

With the continued growth of DER including rooftop solar systems and small-scale batteries installations, the grid is increasingly supporting two-way power flows back and forth from consumers.

This means the NEM requires technical standards for DER, which are critical to maintaining the security and reliability of the network and minimising negative impacts. For example, the technical standards ensure rooftop solar systems and batteries can withstand sharp changes in voltage and don't automatically switch off.

A rule change request, made by Energy Security Board Chair Dr Kerry Schott AO, is seeking new governance arrangements of these technical standards to help support long-term grid security and reliability across the NEM.

Work on this rule change will form part of the Australian Energy Market Commission (AEMC)'s ongoing and larger-scale project to embed solar and other distributed resources into the overall power system.

The rule change requests consideration of how existing governance of DER technical standards sits with multiple national and state-based organisations and whether there are improvements that can be made.

The AEMC has released a consultation paper and invites stakeholders to make submissions by Thursday, 7 October 2021.

Dr Schott's rule change request was received when AEMC was already assessing a rule change request from the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) seeking to establish a framework to set minimal DER technical standards for the NEM. The AEMC made a decision on this rule change in February, which covered a range of changes including new standards to help the power system handle more DER including home solar, batteries and electric vehicles. These changes take effect in December this year.

For more information and contact details, visit the Governance of distributed energy resources technical standards project page.

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