Energy ministers reboot energy market reform agenda 14 July 2017

News that the COAG Energy Council is supporting 49 of the Finkel Review's 50 recommendations – including endorsement of a new 'demand response' measure that will push down power prices – is a significant achievement that deserves recognition says the Energy Efficiency Council.

Council CEO Luke Menzel highlighted decisive action on demand response as an example of the Finkel Review's effectiveness in clearing the logjam of energy market reform.

"Today Australia's energy ministers rebooted our energy market reform agenda. Among a raft of other measures, they have asked the Australian Energy Market Commission (AEMC) to make a recommendation on how to bring demand response into the wholesale electricity market."

"More importantly they have given them a deadline – the new rule needs to be in place for the summer of 2018-19. That deadline is crucial, because last time the AEMC looked at this, it ping ponged back and forth between energy market institutions for four years."

"We need to take the time necessary to get it right. But glacial, bureaucratic processes just don't cut it in a 21st century energy system."

Clean Energy Target unfinished business

Mr. Menzel also welcomed the creation of a new Energy Security Board that will focus on strategic planning across the National Electricity Market and help co-ordinate action between energy market institutions.

However he said action is still needed on the Clean Energy Target, which was not signed off today, but is still under consideration.

"Australia's energy debate is pretty willing, and there are a huge diversity of perspectives."

"But when the Australian Energy Council, the Clean Energy Council, the Business Council of Australia and the National Farmers Federation are all saying we need to back in a Clean Energy Target as part of the full package of Dr. Finkel's reforms, it sends a strong signal to politicians in Canberra and around the country: lets get this done."