Energy & Power
Energy & Power industry in Australia and New Zealand
The electricity industry involves the generation and retail, transmission and distribution of electricity.
The Australian and New Zealand electricity industries can be divided into a few components: the transmission sector, the distribution sector and the retailer sector.
- The electricity transmission sector involves the operation of high-voltage electric power transmission systems and control electricity transmission from generating plants to distribution networks. Transmission includes the use of power lines and transformer stations. The primary activities are high-voltage electricity transmission and substation operations.
- The electricity distribution sector considers the companies that operate low-voltage electricity distribution systems to deliver electricity to consumers and the companies that transport electricity sourced from upstream high-voltage transmission networks. Some of the primary services are held on behalf of electricity retailers such as electricity distribution, streetlight operation and smart meter installation.
- Electricity retailing involves the buying of electricity from generators and selling it to the end user and involves the relationship between the retailer and consumer.
Australian the Energy and Electricity industry legislation
Some Australian legislation that may be applicable to your business in the energy and electricity industries may include, but may not be limited to:
- Australian Energy Market Act 2004
- Australian Renewable Energy Agency Act 2011
- Australian Renewable Energy Agency (Consequential Amendments and Transitional Provisions) Act 2011
- Building Energy Efficiency Disclosure Act 2010
- Clean Energy Finance Corporation Act 2012
- Clean Energy Legislation (Carbon Tax Repeal) Act 2014
- Clean Energy Regulator Act 2011
- Clean Energy Legislation Amendment Act 2012
- Competition and Consumer (Industry Code—Electricity Retail) Regulations 2019
- Emergency Management Act 2013 (VIC)
- Emergency Management Act 2005 (WA)
- State Emergency and Rescue Management Act 1989 (NSW)
- Disaster Management Act 2003 (QLD)
- Emergency Management Act 2004 (SA)
- Emergency Management Act 2006 (TAS)
- Emergency Management Act 2013 (NT)
- Greenhouse and Energy Minimum Standards Act 2012
- National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting Act 2007
- Renewable Energy (Electricity) Act 2000
- Renewable Energy (Electricity) Amendment Act 2015
- Renewable Energy (Electricity) (Large-scale Generation Shortfall Charge) Act 2000
- Renewable Energy (Electricity) (Small-scale Technology Shortfall Charge) Act 2010
New Zealand Energy & Electricity industry legislation
Some New Zealand legislation that may be applicable to your business in the energy and electricity industry may include, but may not be limited to:
- Electricity Act 1992
- Electricity Industry Act 2010
- Energy Companies Act 1992
- Energy Efficiency and Conservation Act 2000
- Energy (Fuels, Levies, and References) Act 1989
- International Energy Agreement Act 1976
These lists are not exhaustive, and there may be additional legislation that is applicable to your business’ circumstances.
Energy and Electricity Industries risk management
Energy production and transmission is expensive, requiring multimillion-dollar equipment as well as the need for high numbers of personnel to complete operations. Electricity is generally transported via transmission lines in order to be distributed to end-users. Natural disasters that affect these transmission lines can have severe impacts on personnel safety and the wider community. Equipment and resources that are essential to the generation and transmission of electricity can be impacted. Delays in production and transmission of electricity can leave towns, cities and states without energy, affecting their daily activities, transport, medical services and businesses. Electricity transmission delays that occur as a result of equipment failure or injury to personnel can impact the timeline of recovery for a business and its profitability, affecting the interests of stakeholders and its reputation. Some extreme natural disasters such as cyclones and bushfires can not only disrupt these lines but can also limit accessibility which can then further prevent the restoration of power.
While it is rare for electricity transmission lines to face outages, when experienced, they can have great impacts on the wider community. Examples include:
- 25th May 2021 – 400,000 Queenslanders lost electricity supply after a fire at Queensland’s Callide power station.
- 28th September 2016 – South Australia experienced a state-wide blackout.
- 16th January 2007 – A bushfire caused an outage of the interconnector between Victoria and New South Wales, leaving up to 200,000 people without electricity.
- 31st January 2020 – AusNet Services’ transmission’s double circuit 500 kV overhead electric line between the Moorabool Terminal Station to Tarrone Terminal Station experienced an outage.
Outages that affect distribution companies can lead to many thousands of consumers having their energy supply impacted regularly, usually with impacts being felt on a wider basis. Examples include:
- 28th- 29th January 2018 – Unexpected electricity outages in Victoria lead to over 94,000 people losing power supply to their homes. Resilient Services investigated the cause of the outage and co-authored a report for the Victorian Premier, a copy of which can be accessed via https://www.energy.vic.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0021/328260/Post-Event-Review-Power-Outages-28-and-29-January-2018.pdf https://www.energy.vic.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0021/328260/Post-Event-Review-Power-Outages-28-and-29-January-2018.pdf
- 29th January 2020 – A major storm that hit Perth left 50,000 homes and businesses in Western Australia without electricity.
- 1st March 2021 – Cyclone Niran resulted in the loss of electricity to the city of Cairns for several hours.
- February 2020 – 140,000 Sydney homes were left without electricity for several days after severe storms impacted transmission and distribution lines.
Managing such risks and having procedures in place to ensure that your business is prepared for any emergency can mean the difference between a disaster having only short-term effects on your business or having long-term effects on profitability and company value.
Energy and Electricity Industries Emergency Management Plans, Procedures, Exercises and Training
As emergency events are common occurrences in the high-risk electricity sector, it is highly regulated by state and federal legislation which require that companies and government agencies within this sector have risk mitigation systems, emergency management plans and have undergone training exercises to prepare for any emergency events.
Be it an exercise, training program or emergency management plan, Resilient Services is your go-to emergency management specialist for the energy sector. We have prepared detailed safety reviews, regulatory reviews and RTO training programs for government agencies, regulatory bodies and several ASX Top 100 companies.
We have provided a suite of resilience documents which include emergency exercises, business continuity plans, emergency management plans and crisis communication procedures to several energy companies involved in energy extraction and production within Australia and New Zealand. Our weather supply interruption modelling procedures have also helped many energy companies to reduce outage times and avoid regulatory penalties. We have also worked on energy reports and implemented management plans regarding state-wide projects.