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On the Inequity of Flat-rate Electricity Tariffs

Paul Simshauser and David Downer

Year: 2016
Volume: Volume 37
Number: Number 3
DOI: 10.5547/01956574.37.3.psim
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Abstract:
Proposals to reform default 'flat-rate' electricity tariffs are rarely met with enthusiasm by consumer groups or policymakers because they produce winners and losers. Proposals to initiate more cost-reflective time-of-use rates will be met with cautious interest if the basis of customer participation is 'opt-in'. Using the smart meter data of 160,000 residential customers from the Victorian region of Australia's National Electricity Market, our tariff model reveals that households in financial hardship are the most adversely affected from existing flat-rate structures. Even after network tariff rebalancing, Hardship and Concession & Pensioner Households are, on average, beneficiaries of more cost-reflective tariff structures once Demand Response is accounted for.



On Entry Cost Dynamics in Australia's National Electricity Market

Paul Simshauser and Joel Gilmore

Year: 2020
Volume: Volume 41
Number: Number 1
DOI: 10.5547/01956574.41.1.psim
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Abstract:
In theory, well designed electricity markets should deliver an efficient mix of technologies at least-cost. But energy market theories and energy market modelling are based upon equilibrium analysis and in practice electricity markets can be off-equilibrium for extended periods. Near-term spot and forward contract prices can and do fall well below, or substantially exceed, relevant entry cost benchmarks and associated long run equilibrium prices. However, given sufficient time higher prices, on average or during certain periods, create incentives for new entrant plant which in turn has the effect of capping longer-dated average spot price expectations at the estimated cost of the relevant new entrant technologies. In this article, we trace generalised new entrant benchmarks and their relationship to spot price outcomes in Australia's National Electricity Market over the 20-year period to 2018; from coal, to gas and more recently to variable renewables plus firming, notionally provided by - or shadow priced at - the carrying cost of an Open Cycle Gas Turbine. This latest entry benchmark relies implicitly, but critically, on the gains from exchange in organised spot markets, using existing spare capacity. As aging coal plant exit, gains from exchange may gradually diminish with 'notional firming' increasingly and necessarily being met by physical firming. At this point, the benchmark must once again move to a new technology set...



Net-Zero Policy vs Energy Security: The Impact on GCC Countries

Simona Bigerna, Maria Chiara D’Errico, Paolo Polinori, and Paul Simshauser

Year: 2023
Volume: Volume 44
Number: Special Issue
DOI: 10.5547/01956574.44.SI1.sbig
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Abstract:
Gulf Cooperation Council countries have accumulated large oil portfolio revenues. However, the world economy is seeking to reduce carbon emissions, and in turn, its reliance on fossil fuel resources through investments in renewable energy resources. The aim of this research is to analyze oil portfolio risk from an exporters' perspective, highlighting how relevant determinants, such as the increasing penetration of renewables in the importer counterparties, and financial and policy uncertainty, increase the volatility of oil export portfolios.We construct oil portfolios for four Gulf Cooperation Council countries (Kuwait, Oman, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates) from 2008 to 2018, and compute volatility spillovers à la Diebold and Yilmaz. Then, the effects of policy and economic variables on volatility spillover indices are estimated using different panel linear regression models.We find rising renewable market shares significantly affects oil export portfolio risks and reduces adverse impacts on importing countries of oil market fluctuations.



The Levelised Cost of Frequency Control Ancillary Services in Australia’s National Electricity Market

Joel Gilmore, Tahlia Nolan, and Paul Simshauser

Year: 2024
Volume: Volume 45
Number: Number 1
DOI: 10.5547/01956574.45.1.jgil
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Abstract:
Over the period 2016–2021 Australia's National Electricity Market (NEM) experienced an investment supercycle with 16,000MW of new utility-scale renewable plant commitments in a power system with a peak demand of 35,000MW, and the disorderly loss of 5,000MW of synchronous coal-fired plant. This placed strains on system security, most visibly in the distribution of the power systems' frequency, requiring material changes to the NEM's suite of Frequency Control Ancillary Service (FCAS) markets. Utility-scale batteries are ideally suited for FCAS duties, but there is no forward price curve for FCAS markets, nor is there any systematic framework for determining equilibrium prices that might otherwise be used for investment decision-making. In this article, we develop an approach for quantifying long run equilibrium costs and stochastic spot prices in the markets for Frequency Control Ancillary Services, with the intended application being to guide the suitability of utility-scale battery investments under conditions of uncertainty and missing forward FCAS markets.





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