New maps of energy grid to identify opportunity

maps, distribution

New mapping technology of Australia’s energy grid will help identify optimal areas for new renewable projects and demand management, ultimately saving customers money in power bills.

Energy Networks Australia has released new interactive maps, The Network Opportunity Maps, produced with the University of Technology Sydney (UTS).

The maps identify areas where the grid is ‘constrained’ and not easily able to cope with new connections.

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Energy Networks Australia CEO Andrew Dillon said the maps provided important information that would ultimately save customers money by helping networks avoid spending as much on traditional poles and wires.

“The network opportunity maps are a valuable resource for measuring and tracking areas that would most benefit from renewable energy investment or alternative demand management programs,” Mr Dillon said.

“They are a great tool that identify how we can build an increasingly responsive grid for new energy services without high infrastructure spend being passed on to customers.

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“This is part of a commitment by energy network businesses to further advance renewable energy’s integration into the grid and support value for money for energy customers across the country.”

First launched in 2017, the maps were the culmination of a three-year project by the Institute for Sustainable Futures at UTS and Energy Networks Australia.

They were developed with support from ARENA, the NSW Government, CSIRO and industry partners including Ergon Energy, AusNet Services, Powerlink, ElectraNet and Transgrid.