In today’s talking points: South Australia on track to meet 75% renewables target Liberals promised to scrap; China factories with onsite power plants to pay fees, help fund broader energy price cuts; Beijing bids to extend its global clean energy lead; Relief in sight as data shows power bills might have peaked
South Australia on track to meet 75% renewables target Liberals promised to scrap
Although the Liberal party initially rejected the target to draw 75% of the state’s energy from renewable source by 2025, set by the previous Labor government, the state’s energy minister, Dan van Holst Pellekaan, has announced that they are on track in achieving this regardless. The state and federal Liberal party were highly critical of the policy when it was announced, however several experts have predicted that they will either hit or exceed that target. The energy minister has pledged that it won’t come at too high a price and that his focus in energy is on helping consumers.
Read More: The Guardian
China factories with onsite power plants to pay fees, help fund broader energy price cuts
In a move which aligns with Li Keqiang’s promise to lower electricity prices by 10% by the end of 2018, China is set to force factories with onsite power to pay additional fees. This will help to fund $12 billion worth of price cuts in both the industrial and commercial electricity markets, as well as restrain the use of onsite coal-fired electricity plants as part of the government’s “war on pollution”. The construction of new plants in smog-prone regions will be banned and a crackdown on illegal plants were both announced by the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC). The size of fees to be paid by the plants will be determined by the provincial government, according to the NDRC.
Read More: Reuters
Beijing bids to extend its global clean energy lead
For the past decade, China has been the largest manufacturer of solar photovoltaic cells. Now China is also dominating the production of wind turbine and lithium-ion battery globally, consolidating its position as the world’s leading producer of clean energy technologies. Developing countries aim to decarbonise in ways which will not inhibit their economies’ growth, a strategy on which Beijing capitalizes by investing in foreign utility companies; China’s Three Gorges Company (CTG) has attempted an acquisition of Energias de Portugal (EDP) – Portugal’s largest energy company which delivers to nearly 10 million clients in North and South America and Europe. Though having initially rejected the attempt, EDP has now offered a higher price for CTG’s takeover, leaving the possibility of the acquisition open.
Read More: The Jamestown Foundation
Relief in sight as data shows power bills might have peaked
Electricity prices begin to decrease, creating relief for many consumers who have been suffering from high power bills. However, despite a national decrease in electricity prices, not all states will benefit from savings to the same extent; in the June quarter, electricity prices in Victoria fell by 3.5% whereas New South Wales only experienced a 0.6% price drop. The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) has suggested that these price changes may be due to the increasing provision of bill discounts to consumers by electricity retailers, or due to seasonal changes, with prices being driven higher in the summer due to the increased use of air-conditioning in those months.
Read More: The Sydney Morning Herald