Renewable Energy and Load Management

Date Published: February 2019

This study examines the potential for end-use customers to adopt load flexibility in parallel with distributed energy systems in Australia. Known as The Renewable Energy and Load Management (REALM) project, the study provides insight into the opportunities for flexible load, methods for integration, and needed reforms to achieve rapid uptake. Emerging technology in data systems and controls, falling prices in clean energy onsite generation, and innovative demand response tools are creating an environment ripe for load management in Australia. The paper highlights four key findings:

1. The potential for commercial and industrial sites to deliver load flexibility already exists through on-site storage such as thermal storage.

2. Load management (through the REALM configurations) improve the value proposition of renewable energy, facilitating high on-site and grid penetration.

3. REALM improves business case, but current tariff structures prevent sufficient incentive for sites to invest in load flexibility.

4. Falling technology costs will continue to enhance the business case for REALM systems in the short-term.

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