The COAG Energy Council has requested that the AEMC review the factors which contributed to the ‘system black’ event experienced in South Australia on 28 September 2016.
On 1 February 2017, the AEMC wrote to the Council outlining the approach the AEMC intends to take in conducting the review and preparing a final report to Ministers. The final report is to be provided within six months of the completion of both AEMO’s investigation report and the AER’s compliance report.
South Australia experienced a ‘system black’ event at 16:18 AEST on Wednesday 28 September 2016. A substantial program of reviews and investigations has been commissioned in response to the event, including work by the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) and the Australian Energy Regulator (AER) focussed on technical and compliance issues, respectively.
The COAG Energy Council has requested that the AEMC conducts a review that will build on the work undertaken by AEMO and the AER by identifying any systemic issues that contributed to the event or affected the response. The Commission is to provide a report to Ministers on:
any recommended actions or amendments to the regulatory frameworks that should be taken to address any systemic issues identified; and
the extent to which the recommendations will be addressed in the AEMC’s ongoing work program.
The final report to the Council is due six months after the finalisation of both AEMO’s investigation report and the AER’s compliance report. AEMO’s final report is due to be published in March 2017, with the AER’s report expected in due course after that.
In the letter accompanying the terms of reference for the review, the Commission was requested to advise the Council on how it proposes to conduct the review, and this advice was provided on 31 January 2017.
Among other things, the Commission noted in the advice that, given the period of time allowed for the review and the fact that the issues will have been comprehensively canvassed through the AEMO and AER processes, it does not anticipate undertaking formal public consultation on the issues.
There is, however, likely to be significant value in public consultation on the recommendations developed through the review. The Commission therefore intends to publish a draft report approximately four months into the six month period, and to consult on this for a period of four weeks.