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Ergon Energy submission to COAG consultation


On 20th September 2016, Ergon Energy provided this 16 page submission to the COAG consultation process .  In their submission, they provide strong support:

“Ergon Energy is a global and Australian leader in the research of energy storage systems and their integration into electricity networks.  We strongly support the development of a national energy storage register

In our summary page here we list the 4 key reasons we identified (up front) as to why an Energy Storage Register could be required – to which other reasons have been added as they have come to light to us (or been pointed out to us directly).

With respect to these 4 key reasons, Ergon provides these specific comments:

Reason 1 = To assist First Responders 

A number of specific comments are made to the needs of First Responders:

“… in regards to the safety of first responders, the risks UPS and off-grid systems present are equal to that of export capable energy storage devices, due to the threat of ignition

and:

“New battery chemistries will result in different risk profiles and as these are emerging chemistries, all risks and impacts are not known.

Where they are provided, we link to other articles referencing assistance to first responders as a reason for the Energy Storage Register.

Reason 2 = To assist in any potential future product recalls

Ergon provided a number of comments about future product recalls:

“Energy storage is an emerging field and based on experience in the solar industry, safety related product recalls are not unusual.

Where they are provided, we link to other articles referencing potential future product recalls as a reason for the Energy Storage Register.

Reason 3 = To assist with life-cycle management

Ergon concurs with the need for the ESR, with respect to life cycle management:

“Ergon Energy questions the discussion paper’s suggestion that energy storage has a lifespan of 10 years minimum.  Our experience with energy storage, particularly early model and new technology systems, suggests that despite manufacturers’s quoted lifespans there will be significant early failures.

Where they are provided, we link to other articles referencing life-cycle management as a reason for the Energy Storage Register.

Reason 4 = To assist with electricity system operations and planning.

A number of specific references are made with respect to electricity systems operation and planning:

“DNSP sight of and ability to collaborate with manufacturers to access such features could provide considerable network benefits.  To capture these and other opportunities will require a more granular level of information, such as inverter model and capabilities, which Ergon Energy is not currently able to collect.

This is another reference to the need for a broader register of “distributed energy resources” (as distinct from something solely focused on batteries).

Where they are provided, we link to other articles referencing electricity system operations and planning intelligence as a reason for the Energy Storage Register.

The attachment is quite detailed, and provides some excellent perspectives we are factoring into what we are doing.