23rd January 2006 – new record for peak NEM-Wide demand


The week started with gusto right across the NEM as demand levels in NSW soared, bringing the whole-NEM demand to about 31,000MW – as shown in NEM-Watch:

(please click on the image for a larger view)

Please see the notes on the image above.


Reference to NEM-Review the day after the event can reveal the following:

Queensland

(click on the chart for a closer look)

The first chart illustrates the solid prices exerienced in the
afternoon, when demand levels in Queensland rose to almost 8,000MW (not shown on the chart, but
you can see this in NEM-Review).

You can also note the following:

(a) A coincident reduction in output at Tarong power station (units 1, 2 and 4 reduced output
from 350MW to 280MW) would have had the impact of sustaining the price spike;

(b) CS Energy and Stanwell Corporation units can be seen to increase output to
supply the additional demand.


NSW

(click on the chart for a closer look)

The second chart illustrates the solid prices exerienced in the
afternoon, when demand levels in NSW rose to above 12,000MW (as shown above in NEM-Watch, and
which you can also trend through NEM-Review).

You can also note the following:

(a) There was a substantial drop in production at the two Hunter Valley coal plants
(Bayswater and Liddell) as 7 units collectively reduced output by 840MW.

(b) There was also a drop in production of about 180MW at Delta’s Mt Piper station.

(c) No significant change in production was noted for Eraring station.


Victoria

(click on the chart for a closer look)

The third chart illustrates the solid prices exerienced in the
afternoon in Victoria (as in the rest of the NEM).

In addition, it can be seen that the price spikes experienced early in the morning coincided
with reductions in output at both Loy Yang A and Loy Yang B stations:

(a) All 4 units at Loy Yang B reduced output from 383-425MW to 300MW in the period to 2am.
This low level of production was mostly maintained through until 7am (NEM time).

(b) Both Loy Yang B units had their output reduced from 500MW to about 392MW for the
period 1:30am to 7am.

As can be seen, 2 significant price spikes eventuated during this period. It should be noted
that this spike did not transfer through to NSW and QLD (as seen in the charts above).


South Australia

(click on the chart for a closer look)

The final chart illustrates same period in South Australia.

This chart is very similar to that for Victoria, with the spikes experienced in the morning
coupled with the solid prices experienced NEM-wide (i.e. mainland) in the afternoon. In
particular, please note that:

(a) TRU Energy (in its Torrens A & B stations) was called on to make up for the loss in
production at the Loy Yang stations during the morning.

(b) All the highlighted stations show solid contributions during the afternoon peak
in demand.

About the Author

Paul McArdle
One of three founders of Global-Roam back in 2000, Paul has been CEO of the company since that time. As an author on WattClarity, Paul's focus has been to help make the electricity market more understandable.

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