Enel X successfully completed a three-year emergency Demand Response (DR) program in partnership with the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) and the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO). The Enel X Demand Response Project ran under ARENA’s Advancing Renewables Program from December 2017 to 2020, and was designed to trial how DR can help to stabilise the grid during extreme demand peaks.
Enel X’s virtual power plant (VPP) delivered 50MW of commercial and industrial (C&I) flexible energy load as a reserve resource to support the grid, with 30MW in Victoria and another 20MW in New South Wales. The VPP is ‘virtual’ because it combines the loads of customers who power down, which has the same effect on the grid as turning new power generation online.
Participating C&I energy users were on standby to safely reduce their electricity consumption during dispatch events called by AEMO. Cold storage and logistics facilities, water utilities, agriculture and food processing facilities, industrial gas and manufacturing sites, tertiary education and retail locations were called to respond when there was extreme weather over the past three summers.
Carl Hutchinson, Head of Operations at Enel X Asia Pacific said, “We are extremely pleased with the results of the trial, which further demonstrated that DR can play an crucial role in maintaining a stable electricity grid. Our VPP provides a critical resource for times when the grid is under immense stress, including the peak of summer when electricity demand outweighs supply. When called on by AEMO, our VPP reduced the possibility and impact of power outages over the past three years, proving DR is an effective demand management technology in providing much needed emergency reserves.”
“Through the program, we invested in our customers’ DR capability, who over the trial period received ~$4.5 million in availability and event payments. We installed our own metering technology onsite, allowing us to monitor customer loads and potential DR performance, to ensure they could respond when needed, either automatically or manually. We are proud that our VPP exceeded its performance targets across 12 dispatch events during the trial.”
Enel X’s VPP offers multiple DR programs to support the grid, as well as battery storage projects. With unmatched market access and operating independently of retail contracts, Enel X can help you access the most value from the energy markets. Get in touch with one of our experts to learn more.