TransGrid - AER review of the planning and consultation requirements

Sector: 
Segment: 
Category: 
Compliance review
Release date: 
10 September 2010
Related provisions: 

Clause 5.6.6 of the National Electricity Rules
 

Outcome: 

TransGrid has provided a range of undertakings to the AER on future compliance

Overview

The AER has released its investigation report into the compliance of TransGrid with clause 5.6.6 of the National Electricity Rules in regard to a proposed 330kV transmission line from Dumaresq to Lismore.

The Electricity Rules require an applicant who proposes to establish a new transmission asset to comply with various planning and consultation procedures, including the conduct of the Regulatory Test. These processes aim to ensure that planning for new investment is transparent and that consultation to elicit alternative proposals is effective. Further, they are designed to ensure that non-network alternatives (such as generation and demand management) are considered on a level playing field with network options.

The AER found shortcomings in the process conducted by TransGrid in reaching its decision to build the line. Key areas of concern are that:

  • the application notice did not contain an adequate analysis of all reasonable network and non-network options

 

  • neither the application notice (April 2008) nor the final report (March 2009) adequately examined the potential for material inter-network impacts

 

  • the final report did not summarise or respond to submissions on the application notice

 

  • the decision to limit the Regulatory Test analysis to a single reasonable scenario was inadequately justified and did not meet the requirement to provide a detailed description on why TransGrid consider the asset passed the Regulatory Test.


This report notes that TransGrid has now undertaken further consultation through the issue of a Request for Proposals (RFP) in May 2010 that sought non-network alternatives in the far north coast region. TransGrid has provided the AER with a series of commitments to improve future processes.