Rooftop solar systems, batteries, electric vehicles, microgrids and other technologies are transforming Western Australia’s electricity system. These small-scale devices, known as Distributed Energy Resources (DER) present both challenges and opportunities for the way we produce, manage and consume electricity in our State.
The DER Roadmap outlines the actions we must take in order to meet these challenges and harness the potential for cleaner, more affordable energy.
Distributed Energy Resources, or DER, are smaller-scale devices that can either use, generate or store electricity, and form a part of the local distribution system, serving homes and businesses.
Examples of DER are rooftop solar systems, batteries, electric vehicles and microgrids.
The DER Roadmap is a set of actions (36 in total) that the State Government, Synergy, Western Power, Horizon Power and AEMO plan to undertake over the next 5 years to keep the power system stable and allow more DER to connect.
The DER Roadmap is the State Government’s response to the challenge being posed by the amount of rooftop solar generation in our power system. Solar generation is great, but it is intermittent, which means its output can drop quickly when cloud cover comes in or the sun goes down. It is also displacing large generators that have traditionally provided system support services.
We want people to continue to connect solar, and to enable that we need to make some changes to our power system, including helping the system operator see what distributed generation and other resources like batteries are doing. We will also need to adapt the way we use electricity. The Roadmap outlines the actions that will help make this happen.
The DER Roadmap has been developed by the State Government’s Energy Transformation Taskforce, with broad engagement with industry and our consumer advocate; and in close consultation with Western Power and the Australian Energy Market Operator. Our Roadmap is designed for the specific needs of the WA energy sector, learning from work done in Australia and worldwide where DER poses a similar challenge.
We’re looking at pilot projects to test community batteries and how to combine and coordinate DER systems such as rooftop solar, batteries and electric vehicles (DER orchestration). A small number of customers will be approached to participate in the various pilots. Participation will be entirely voluntary.
No. The initiatives under the Roadmap are designed to ensure electricity prices are affordable and allow us all to benefit from the clean, inexpensive electricity rooftop solar can provide.
The Roadmap identifies pilot projects to explore how we might offer greater choice for customers, including ways to reduce bills and integrate new technologies.
Yes. The Roadmap is designed to ensure Western Australians connected to our main grid can continue to install rooftop solar panels, while allowing other forms of energy resources to be connected that can help improve the resilience of our power system.