Traditional investment in poles and wires seems to be shifting to renewables and a decentralised grid. “Victoria’s major electricity distribution companies are seeking approval to invest tens of millions of dollars on network upgrades that will pave the way for a future where grid-connected solar is on almost every household rooftop.”
– (original article: Victorian networks plan for grid where 95 per cent of households have rooftop solar)
Victoria’s grid is currently not equipped for the growing uptake of rooftop solar and the network operators recognise that if systems are allowed to export to the grid, it will benefit everyone.
This ‘solar enablement’ plan has been submitted to the Australian Energy Regulator for approval.
The current ageing centralised energy generation & distribution system needs to address the forecasted growth of solar to avoid future network failures and to maximise the benefits of rooftop solar. The investment should digitise the grid, create greater insight and control for network operators ease of management & control for users so that they can maximise self-consumption. Energy management software and the hardware needs to be part of this new de-centralised system. At the network level, it will eliminate market blindness and at the individual user level, it will facilitate maximum export capacity and the ability to respond to demand response initiatives and manage peak demand.
Digitising the grid is a crucial step forward to transitioning from the current ageing centralised coal & gas’s generation energy system to a robust decentralised digital energy system, designed to embrace renewables.