SA shows the way to the future with Wind and Other

A detailed analysis of the four-figure numbers for power in SA last Monday. Whoops, five digit numbers!

•the physical supply-demand balance
•the detailed reasons for and impact of the constraints on the Heywood interconnection
•bidding behaviour of the key thermal generators
•the patterning of prices within half hourly settlement intervals, highlighting the “5/30” effect we’ve previously commented on here
•what ended the period of volatility?

PLUS. A bonus, some things you always wanted to know about the science of making sweet biscuits but were afraid to ask.

AND RIP Nancy Sinatra aged 101.

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20 Responses to SA shows the way to the future with Wind and Other

  1. duncanm

    The salient point:

    With over 2,000 MW of potential competition for dispatch from Victorian imports and wind generation absent, South Australia’s largest generator, the AGL Torrens Island Power Station, held much higher than normal market influence for the moderate demand conditions on 9 July. By structuring its market offers with substantial volumes offered at 5-digit prices, well ahead of events (note that no significant upward price rebidding occurred on the day), AGL was able to establish conditions conducive to significant price volatility unless peaking generators chose to offer far more than their normal bid volumes at low prices.

  2. Dr Fred Lenin

    Any source of power which cannot supply power 24/7 or on demand should not be allowed on the national grid . Intermittent power suppliers disrupt the even flow of power should be outside of the grid ,power which has become a nescessity,like water,sewage, medical services , security, clean food,transport and shelter . All governments have a bound duty to supply these services for the betterment of society,any government which fails this duty should be dismissed and replaced by another which will do it’d duty.

  3. Confused Old Misfit

    Rafe,
    The intricacies of the NEM and electrical prices and the associated cronyism are no doubt interesting. However, more deserving of analysis are the actions that have driven the supply and delivery of electric energy to the edge of reliability and the peak of cost. Cui bono? And why? Who is responsible for having got us to this ridiculous and parlous state?
    Even more critical and necessary is serious consideration of the measures that must be taken to get us out of this condition. Clearly, and with the assumption that policy at any government level presets no impediment, supply must be increased. Nuclear, gas, coal; all should be used to provide power to a proper grid system.
    Any politician that insists that this is not possible, for whatever reason is too stupid to warrant one’s time or vote.

  4. duncanm

    note the push for ‘5 minute settlement’.

    Those stockmarket types here may want to tell us how great that will be for the generators and their manipulators.

  5. Tel

    note the push for ‘5 minute settlement’.

    Problem is that under the current 30 minute settlement system, you have generators that cannot even make a firm guarantee to deliver on the next 30 minutes of power. The only options are shorter settlement periods or penalties for non-delivery.

    If penalties were in place for non-delivery the wind farms would get smashed because wind can drop out any time, and they would need to find something to fill in the remainder of the 30 minutes. Unfortunately, there’s no politicians with the testicular fortitude to front up and say, “I’m going to apply penalties to wind farms for intermittent power”.

  6. Up The Workers!

    The only essential activity that our various Labor/Laboral misgovernments consistently supply us with, without regard to cost, is sewage. (Just listen to their ‘policy’ speeches.)

    Sewerage, not so much.

  7. RobK

    I seem to recall reading somewhere that in Canada RE has to be backed by dispatchable energy in order to feed into the grid. This is similar to some suggestions here. Essentially RE is a lower value energy source due to its non-dispatchability.

  8. RobK

    Tel,
     The only options are shorter settlement periods or penalties for non-delivery.
    Iirc, Finkel’s report suggests that with modern data handling, there is no reason to do the 30min average; it was a relic of times past. It would relieve some of the posturing i think.

  9. Rafe Champion

    RobK no technological fix gets over the problem that the system has to be designed to deliver 24/7. That means as someone suggested that Wind and Other have to be disconnected from the grid until they can deliver 24/7 or at least as close as the system used to do. Or they have to pay the price, which would drive them out of business.

  10. RobK

    Rafe,
    ……but Bruce Springsteen would say that. ☺

  11. Confused Old Misfit

    Rafe Champion
    #2763758, posted on July 15, 2018 at 1:29 pm

    All of which would be a VERY. GOOD. THING.

  12. RobK

    Rafe,
    I agree, there needs to be a penalty or an agreement with a dispatchable source to underwrite it. As i understand it, in Canada the RE is bid into the grid either as dispatchable (being produced on the same site as the conventional generators) or underwritten, taking that capacity out of the bidding. Either way there’s a cost which our RE doesn’t have yet. It will make RE more expensive and the RET is still going to give false market signals . In the end the RET has to go. Sooner will be less painful than later, obviously much damage has been done.

  13. Dr Fred Lenin

    Rafe, I suggested that the grid only accept sources which can reliably supply power ,all this pissing about with rich peoples solar pittance and crony capitalist carpetbaggers windmills must cost a mint to connect ,the cost of supporting something that rarely works properly is probably enough to pay for new coal fired plants in say, Port Augusta on the site of the one the globalists blew up , to update Hazelwood ,and one each on the coalfields of NSW and Qld. Tasmania could dam the Franklin river the one the communists stopped them from years ago . Not only would this plan supply the power we need it would piss the gangrene u.n.communists off no end ,be worth it for that reason alone .

  14. Confused Old Misfit

    The penalty rate needs to be so onerous that the renewables are priced out of the market. I can’t understand why people even consider adjusting such a critical system to accommodate what is such a small proportion of the overall supply.
    It should be the other way round. If renewable want to be part of the mix they should be required to adapt to the system that carries the main load.

  15. The guts of the argument is that the squeaky wheel gets the oil.
    Unfortunately, the oil dispenser is dry and the operator is deaf.
    It will only be fixed when the bearings seize and irreparable damage is done.
    So stop worrying – there is nothing you can do.
    …and don’t buy a genset – it will be appropriated by the state for emergency use, along with your fuel stocks – to power the police station beer fridge.

  16. Rafe

    A bit of wind today. As the sun sets Wind and Other deliver 8% of demand.

  17. Rafe

    Price only 82 in SA. LOL.

  18. John Constantine

    Once deindustrialised, all the proles will need is a personal Dune style stillsuit to keep warm and hydrated.

    Plus a small handcranked generator to keep the cellphone charged.

    Rations three days a week and survival of the fittest.

    No power, no water, no worries.

    The seige of Stalingrad was a great victory and a template for how proles can endure.

    Comrades.

  19. Up The Workers!

    Nancy Sinatra…

    “She did it Franks’ way!”

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