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Summarising the COAG Energy Council meeting

For the first time in almost a year, the COAG Energy Council has come together to discuss the pressing issues in the energy industry.

The ministers discussed a number of subjects, ranging from security and reliability to the Climate Solutions Fund. The following is a brief summary of the outcomes that were agreed to at last week's meeting.

Security and reliability

The council tasked the Energy Security Board (ESB) with providing advice for decision in March 2020 on immediate measures to ensure the reliability and security of the electricity system by March 2020.

This will involve an immediate review of the National Electricity Market (NEM) electricity reliability standard to ensure that it is fit for purpose and to also assess benefits and costs to consumers.

COGATI report date pushed back until March 2020

The ministers agreed to provide the Australian Energy Market Commission (AEMC) with additional time to consider the Coordination of Generation and Transmission Investment (COGATI) reform package due to the considerable changes proposed in the reform and the need for further engagement with industry. The ministers noted that it was necessary for the AEMC to continue to engage very closely with industry on this critical proposal for reform to the way generators access the NEM.

The latest CEC submission on the COGATI market review can be found here.

Integrated System Plan

The ESB will report to the COAG Energy Council on its rules package for actioning the Integrated System Plan (ISP) in March 2020. Recognising that interconnectors should only proceed based on a positive cost-benefit assessment, the council has asked the ESB to prepare advice on a fair cost allocation methodology (both in theory and practice) as part of its work to action the ISP.

National Hydrogen Strategy

The ministers supported the National Hydrogen Strategy, which will support the development of a clean, innovative, competitive, technology-neutral and safe hydrogen industry.

Climate Solutions Fund

The council discussed the Federal Government's Climate Solutions Fund and its development of a technology investment roadmap, but few details regarding what was agreed have been released.