Australia’s energy regulator took control of the national grid on Wednesday, suspending market activity affected by rising prices and the threat of widespread blackout.
Australian Energy Market Operator Announces “Spot market stopped“Electricity”All regions“Because he’s not insured anymore.”Secure and reliable supply“.
Electricity used to power Australian homes is usually bought and sold in the most populous East of the country, a system designed to reduce aggregate costs and diversify distribution.
But, the market was pushed into crisis by the continuous supply and demand shocks. The controller then sets prices and intervenes to regulate distribution.
Australia is also one of the top three gas and coal producers in the world, but nearly a quarter of the thermal power plants on the East Coast are currently closed due to malfunctions or maintenance work.
Gas exports are on the rise
The war in Ukraine has raised the demand for Australian gas exports, which are absorbing the surplus that could reduce the deficit in the domestic market.
Distribution problems were exacerbated by a cold weather on the east coast, with electricity suppliers asking homes to control their energy consumption.
Most people on the east coast, including the 10 million people in Sydney and Mayborne, have been warned of a possible power outage.
The regulator has already intervened on several occasions and asked companies to produce more and control prices.
“Consumer interests always come first“Energy Minister Chris Bowen promised shortly before the regulator’s announcement.
His Labor government blamed the crisis on the Conservatives, who remained in power until May, when they defended coal over renewable energy.
Last year, according to official figures, 71% of electricity came from fossil fuels and 51% from coal.
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