New EEC report identifies keys to accelerating decarbonisation
What needs to happen behind the meter to enable the rapid rollout of renewables and the decarbonisation of our energy use?
The Energy Efficiency Council (EEC) has released its newest flagship report, Clean Energy, Clean Demand: Enabling a zero emissions energy system with energy management, renewables and electrification.
Clean Energy, Clean Demand outlines the critical role demand will play in the 21st century energy system. It is a roadmap for how we integrate renewables, electrification and energy management to rapidly decarbonise our economy while getting the best possible outcome for businesses and households.
The report is a new way of thinking about managing our energy use. It illustrates how, as energy supply changes, our energy use must change with it, taking actions that:
- Maximise the direct use of low-cost, zero emissions renewable energy
- Minimise energy use during ‘pinch points’ – when supply is low and demand is high
- Closely integrate energy demand with supply to drive down system costs.
- Managing demand – as well as supply – is critical for a fast, reliable and affordable energy transition
Australia’s electricity system must deliver reliable, affordable energy while rapidly reducing emissions to near-zero. This challenge cannot be underestimated. As investments are made in generation, storage and networks, demand management will make transforming the energy system easier, faster and more affordable.
- Electrifying efficiently will support the rapid, affordable decarbonisation of electricity
To decarbonise at the rate required over the next decade, a huge amount of Australia’s gas, petrol and diesel use will need to be electrified, especially in buildings and light transport. Electrifying loads efficiently and managing the demand placed on electricity grids will reduce the amount of supply-side infrastructure that needs to be built, accelerating decarbonisation while reducing costs.
- Driving down the total cost of our energy systems will reduce bills for consumers
As Australia charts a path forward, focus should be placed on minimising the total cost to society of providing energy services through balanced investment across electricity generation, storage, networks, equipment and energy management. Reducing the amount consumers have to pay for energy services, such as warm homes and transport, is key.
- Transforming energy demand requires urgent focus
Over the past two decades, substantial efforts have been made to transform Australia’s energy supply, but far less effort has been put into how energy is used. Unlocking the potential of energy management to support the transition to net zero requires urgent action.