National register of solar panel and battery installations gets underway
Home solar power and battery installations will be included in a new national register of distributed energy resources.
The Australian Energy Market Commission (AEMC) says the register will give network businesses a valuable window into the electricity market. It’s scheduled for completion by December 1, 2019.
The Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) will set up the register and also oversee the data.
Safety consideration drives new solar register
The initial distributed energy national register proposal came from the COAG Energy Council.
The Council claims it will shore up safety and security in the energy system. It will also allow more accurate forecasting of consumer demand.
The rapid growth of solar installations has raised safety concerns. Excess energy fed back to the grid can cause tripping and outages. The register will help balance resources in the national grid.
Safety is also a primary driver of the solar register. Because rooftop solar PV and solar storage batteries are included, safety risks could also be mitigated.
How the distributed energy national register will function
AEMC’s final ruling has now amended the National Electricity Rules.
This helps AEMO, network service providers and other interested stakeholders. As a result they can now obtain the information they need to make critical decisions.
They can access static data on distributed energy resources (DER) across the national electricity market.
AEMO is responsible for creating and maintaining the distributed energy national register. The body requires network service providers to gather DER data from their customers. This will include information about rooftop solar and battery systems.
Network businesses will also share its DER data in the register with other network businesses. Each business will receive data appropriate to their specific area.
Register can help authorities tackle emergencies
The register could also help authorities tackle emergency situations more effectively.
AEMO must provide relevant information to emergency services on request. This could subsequently mean a more effective response in event of emergencies like fire or flood.
It would also guide decision-making around long-term investment in the national electricity network.