AEMC publishes new rules for stand-alone power systems

The AEMC has published new rules for stand-alone power system (SAPS), outlining the terms under which distribution network businesses can supply customers with stand-alone power systems rather than connecting them to the grid. 

Consumers with distributor-led SAPS will have the same protections, reliability standards and access to competitive retail offers via their retailer of choice as those connected to the grid.

The changes will enable those living in remote locations where power supply is unreliable, or subject to frequent or extended blackouts, to have better quality services. 

This should also reduce costs for all energy consumers by avoiding expensive investment in poles and wires where customer numbers are limited.

The COAG Energy Council’s Senior Committee of Officials has asked the AEMC to develop the initial set of rules for distributor-led SAPS. The Committee has also established a working group to progress accompanying legislative changes in line with recommendations in the AEMC’s final report on distributor-led SAPS published in May 2019. 

In parallel with its work on SAPS, the working group will progress the AEMC’s recommendations to protect consumers and improve choice in embedded networks, as set out in the Commission’s final report on Updating the regulatory framework for embedded networks. 

The AEMC will liaise closely with the working group to help deliver the reform packages for both SAPS and embedded networks.

A draft report for the distributor-led SAPS rule change package will be published for stakeholder consultation in December 2019.

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