Global Insight

Each week we post an update of some of the interesting developments relating to future energy systems that have caught our eye. Within the IGov research we are focusing on developments in a number countries including Germany, Denmark, New York, California and Australia, but are also tracking developments more broadly across a number of continents. The weekly update will report on these.

  • Global Insights: 20th February 2018

    February 20, 2018

    Global Insights: 20th February 2018

    Australia See our latest series on postcards from Australia, so far from Sydney and Canberra. Coming soon…Melbourne. Europe Share of German citizen renewable energy shrinking A few weeks ago we reported an infographic which indicated that up to 2016 citizens (households and farms) accounted for 42.5% of renewables ownership in Germany. At the same time the ‘Big Four’ German utilities, who used to cover 75% of the market, only account for 5.4%. Whilst at first glance these figures are impressive energytransition.org argue that these statistics don’t show how recent changes to renewable energy support is making community or citizen ownership

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  • Global Insights: 13th February 2018

    February 13, 2018

    Global Insights: 13th February 2018

    Australia See our latest series on postcards from Australia, so far from Sydney and Canberra Europe European Commission approves capacity markets in six Member States The European Commission has given State Aid clearance for capacity markets in Belgium, France, Germany, Greece, Italy and Poland, covering more than half the EU’s population. This follows Commission approval for capacity markets in Great Britain in 2014, and also in France and the Irish Single Electricity Market. The design of these most recent capacity markets differ: strategic reserves in Belgium and Germany, market-wide mechanisms (i.e. like the UK’s own

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  • Global Insights: 6th February 2018

    February 6, 2018

    Global Insights: 6th February 2018

    Australia South Australia’s state premier has just announced a plan to create a network of 50,000 home solar systems backed by Tesla Powerwall batteries, in effect creating one of the world’s largest virtual power plants. The project will begin with a trial on 1,100 public housing homes which will have a 5kW PV system with a 13.5kWh Tesla Powerwall battery. Government grants will provide installations free of charge to homeowners. Europe German renewables growth – when is the grid ‘full’? As a new governing coalition takes shape in Germany it appears that the ambitions of the

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  • Global Insights: 31st January 2018

    January 31, 2018

    Global Insights: 31st January 2018

    Australia Household grid services  In a blog from Reposit Power, a company providing storage controllers on PV homes and a market mechanism to enable householder access to be rewarded for providing grid services, they set out how their customers responded to recent grid problems in the South Australia. Looking a two recent incidents when the grid could not cope with demand, they show how their household customers in Victoria and South Australia stepped in to prop the electricity grid up, through the sale of the stored energy in their solar batteries. This is shown over

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  • Global Insights: 23rd January 2018

    January 23, 2018

    Global Insights: 23rd January 2018

    AUSTRALIA ‘Reliable Coal’ breaks again – and has to be saved by renewables and storage In another heatwave last week – with temperatures reaching 40C+ the 1100MW Loy Yang B coal generator in Victoria tripped, losing 530MW of capacity and sending prices in the energy market to $12,900MWh in Victoria and $14,200MWh in South Australia.  This is the thirteenth time a coal generator has failed this summer causing commentators to question whether they can be relied upon for peak generation. The good news for both industrial storage and domestic solar and storage is that they

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  • Global Insight 27: 16th January 2018

    January 16, 2018

    Global Insight 27: 16th January 2018

    AUSTRALIA Storage making headway in the start of 2018 In a ‘first of its kind’ project, a hydroponic agri-business in Victoria will power its entire business with renewable energy.  Powering and heating the extension of Nectar Farm’s site from 10-40 hectares with gas proved too expensive – but electrifying the entire operation has meant that it will be able to be powered from a 204MW wind farm and a 20MW/34MWh battery storage facility to be built nearby.  A deal between the Bungala Green Power Hub, the Victorian Government and Nectar Farms will see 15% of

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  • Global Insight 26: 8th January 2018

    January 9, 2018

    Global Insight 26: 8th January 2018

    Australia Hottest day in 80 years Unlike the ‘snowbomb’  hitting the USA , New South Wales, and in particular Sydney, had its hottest recorded temperatures for 80 years this weekend with the Penrith area reaching 47.3C.  Previous heat events have seen large areas losing power due to back-up generation being unavailable, whereas although 31,000 people lost power this weekend only 4 of the 42 outages were caused by overloading of the networks.  Critics have argued that the loss of power would have been much worse had the heatwave not been at the weekend and suggest

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  • Global Insight 25: 18th December 2017

    December 18, 2017

    Global Insight 25: 18th December 2017

    Australia Demand management incentive scheme The Australia Energy Regulator (AER) has this week released details of its Demand Management Incentive Scheme and the Demand Management Innovation Allowance.  The scheme will give more choice to how consumers use their household electricity and solar PV and storage systems by signing up to schemes such as virtual power plants.  This will enable distributors and consumers to work closer together to alleviate pressure on the grid. The AER estimates $1bn worth of demand management investment may be realised over 5 years. Report from the ISF suggests alternatives to

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  • Global Insight 24: 12th December 2017

    December 12, 2017

    Global Insight 24: 12th December 2017

    Australia The unseen benefits of renewable energy Last week’s Global Insights highlighted the official opening of the Hornsdale Power Reserve – the Tesla Big Battery – in Jamestown, South Australia.  As well as providing reliable, sustainable energy to the district it has also provided other benefits as Neoen, the owners of the Hornsdale wind farm, have shown foresight in how to make renewable energy have a positive impact on a local community. At all stages of the development Neoen worked with local stakeholders. During construction 250 jobs were created over three years which led to

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  • Global Insight 23: 4th December 2017

    December 5, 2017

    Global Insight 23: 4th December 2017

    Australia The Big Battery officially switched on On the 1st December South Australia officially turned on the Hornsdale Power Reserve – the Tesla Big Battery.  The battery, the world’s largest at 100MW/129MWh, was the result of tweets between South Australia Premier Jay Weatherill and Tesla CEO Elon Musk.  Musk had promised to install the battery within 100 days or it would be free.  The battery is connected to the grid next to the 315MW Hornsdale wind farm and proved its worth even before the official switch on.  The battery discharged 70MW into the grid in

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