Australian States are progressing plans for Renewable Energy Zones which will connect high potential areas for renewable energy generation to the grid.
These zones aim to deliver clean, low-cost and reliable renewable energy from solar, wind and battery storage to the network to help power industries, businesses and homes.
The Australian Energy Market Operator’s Integrated System Plan has identified Renewable Energy Zones across the National Electricity Market for development now and into the future.
Plans for Renewable Energy Zones are well-advanced in Victoria and New South Wales, while other States, such as Queensland and South Australia, have also commenced planning. Some Renewable Energy Zones in NSW and Victoria are due to be in operation by the mid-2020s.
The New South Wales Government is initially focused on three zones: Central-West Orana, New England and South-West. The NSW Government’s Electricity Strategy and Electricity Infrastructure Roadmap sets out their plan to develop these zones. Find out more, by visiting the NSW Government website.
The Victorian Government has announced work on several Renewable Energy Zones, largely in the west of the State. It has commenced consultation on a REZ Development Plan. More information on the Victorian Government’s Renewable Energy Zones can be found on their website.
While the funding model for the Renewable Energy Zones is still to be finalised, it is likely that renewable energy generators will be charged by the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) to recover some of the costs. End user customers in States with Renewable Energy Zones may also contribute through increased network charges.
Shell Energy customers in States with Renewable Energy Zones may benefit from an increase in renewable energy generation leading to lower wholesale energy prices. However, the network charges on customers’ energy bills may increase.
Network charges are the charges related to the costs of building, operating and maintaining transmission and distribution poles and wires that deliver electricity to your sites. and for large customers are passed through directly to customers by retailers. Wholesale energy prices are reflected in the retail charges on your energy bill – the peak and off-peak prices that can be found in your energy contract.
To find out more about Renewable Energy Zones, contact your energy retailer or, if you’re a Shell Energy customer, contact your Account Manager or call 13 23 76.
6 December 2021
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