Elephant in the room? No energy policy

Report Overview

Elephant in the room? No energy policy

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Elephant in the room? No energy policy
On 13 August 2019, Infrastructure Australia tabled a comprehensive Audit on Australia’s infrastructure across transport, water, energy, telecommunications and social infrastructure[1]. The objective of the Audit is to take a user perspective of Australia’s infrastructure and create discussion around key challenges and opportunities. We believe the Audit is an excellent forum for lively debate around key issues that will have material impacts on Australians.  We welcome the Audit and congratulate Infrastructure Australia on bringing this Audit forward and into the public domain for healthy and constructive debate.
Venture Insights is a market-leading commentator on how technology disrupts the world we live in. We believe that technology can be a force for good and that if harnessed well can provide significant benefits to people. We call this the “technology dividend” and have focused on a number of key sector groups including digital media, telecommunications, finance, energy and health.
In this report, we review the energy component of the Audit and provide some of our own views on what is being presented. The Audit was broken into 6 areas (which originated from the Finkel review): (a) Affordability and competitive prices; (b) Secure and reliable and sustainable energy); (c) Planning for our future energy networks; (d) New opportunities for community choice; (e) Delivering energy in remote communities; and (f) Harnessing Australia’s energy advantage. We respond in turn to each of these areas.

Contents

Key takeaways

Introduction

The process involves submissions to be made

Infrastructure Australia’s overall message (across all infrastructure areas) is that (a) we are moving in the right direction, (b) that low-density areas and lower socioeconomic groups and being let down overall and (c) that prices are growing in real terms (of which energy is the main culprit)

The Audit highlights that energy costs are impacting our global competitiveness and a major contributor to greenhouse gas emissions

The state of the energy sector: household users are for both dissatisfied with rising prices and frustrated with the leaderless and uncoordinated approach taken by governments to tackle climate change

  • Affordable and competitive prices
  • Secure and reliable and sustainable energy
  • Planning for our future energy networks
  • New opportunities for community choice
  • Delivering energy in remote communities
  • Harnessing Australia’s energy advantage

Conclusion: why are we not transitioning faster and chasing a bigger market share of the global renewables’ technology market?

Appendix

Key data points and charts

List of charts/tables

Figure 1. Outcomes and impacts on the Infrastructure Australia Audit

Figure 2. Challenges and opportunities in the energy market - affordable and competitive prices

Figure 3. Challenges and opportunities in the energy market - secure and reliable and sustainable energy

Figure 4. Challenges and opportunities in the energy market - Planning for our future energy networks

Figure 5. Challenges and opportunities in the energy market - new opportunities for community choice

Figure 6. Challenges and opportunities in the energy market - delivering energy in remote communities

Figure 7. Challenges and opportunities in the energy market - harnessing Australia’s energy advantage

Figure 8. Gas connection rates by state and territory, and between cities and regions

Figure 9. The electricity price index for the last decade

Figure 10. Cost of electricity breakdown (2007 to 2018)

Figure 11. Growth in distribution asset bases and capital costs per customer

Figure 12. Growth in transmission asset bases and capital costs per customer

Figure 13. Energy cost as a percentage of income

Figure 14. Electricity price relative to purchasing power in comparable countries (2004 vs 2016)

Figure 15. Energy cost, inputs cost and the value of outputs indices

Figure 16. Consumer willingness to reduce energy consumption at times of hot weather

Figure 17. Levelised cost of energy

Figure 18. The projected cost of solar PV and batteries

Figure 19. Number of solar households by income quintiles

Figure 20. Demand peak shifting

Figure 21. Australian wind and solar resources