Grid-scale Batteries Will Reshape Energy Markets – AGL

AGL has recently named grid-scale batteries as potential game-changers in the electricity markets of Australia as it prepares for a big shift in its own consumer base towards household batteries and electric vehicles, Renew Economy reported.

During a presentation to the Macquarie Australia Conference, AGL also stated that short-run marginal costs for the current coal and gas plants are assumed to increase. This is due to the end of legacy supply contracts – a development which is considered to underpin the long-term switch to renewable energy alternatives.

In his presentation, AGL CEO Brett Redman stated, “Grid-scale batteries, although expensive now, have the potential to be the game-changer once costs decrease.”

“The bow-wave for change in the scenario for renewables will be falling battery costs. Having commissioned the Dalrymple battery in South Australia in January, we are looking for more opportunities in this space,” he added.

To date, the country has four large-scale battery storage installations in the primary National Electricity Market and many other off-grid locations which include the Pilbara and Alice Springs.

Presently, AGL is also considering two pumped hydro storage facilities in New South Wales and South Australia. It has also determined potential battery storage projects to replace Liddell.

“Government policy should facilitate private sector investment, not hinder it and should be focused on encouraging clear market signals for investment,” Redman said vouching for the National Energy Guarantee and expressing that the success and speed of Australia’s clean energy transition still depends on government policies.

Redman also highlighted the huge potential in batteries and AGL’s intention of implementing its own offering by the start of July.

He said, “To date, nearly 700 of our customers have registered their interest in this rollout. Our offering will be about building capability and ramping up as government schemes do, expanding on what we have learnt through our Adelaide virtual power plant, which is still the largest operating retailer-led project of its kind in Australia.”

Aside from these, Redman also spoke about electric vehicles and cited the possible change to dynamics of the country’s electricity markets beyond 2025.

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