The Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) this week released its update to the
optimistically named Electricity Statement of Opportunities (ESOO) and the news isn’t good.

NIC CEO Isaac Jeffrey said: “NIC supports the transition of our national energy market to
incorporate renewables, helping to move the country towards net zero emissions by 2050. As
a nation though, we cannot afford for the transition to be rushed, poorly planned or built on
ideology and hope.

“AEMO’s most recent update on the National Energy Market reliability has sent a signal in
flashing lights – and sadly, they aren’t flashing to attract attention, they’re flashing because
of a dodgy, intermittent energy supply.

“The agency has confirmed that the transition is being held together with new and delayed
retirements of gas generators which provide base load power. Wind and battery
developments have plugged some holes, but ultimately we need gas and coal to continue
to bridge the gap until renewables and storage technology can catch up.

“It’s no wonder energy bills are skyrocketing, when the operator has had to call in every bit
of help it can muster to try to keep the lights on.

“The more worrying note in the report is the huge energy cliff the National Energy Market will
fall off in 2025 with at least five coal generators closing, collectively responsible for 13% of our
energy needs. AEMO has called for major, ‘urgent and ongoing investment’ in renewables or
we risk breaching the reliability standards by 2027.

“Farmers need reliable and affordable energy to keep pumps and equipment running, and it
needs to be delivered on a stable energy grid. Food and fibre manufacturing businesses up
and down the supply chain also need to know when they turn on their machines, that they’ll
start and it won’t be prohibitively expensive to operate and they can stay globally

“Failure to deliver affordable and reliable energy will cause productivity issues which will
significantly harm businesses and jobs, and will increase the cost of living for all Australians as
the price of food and fibre rises as businesses try to recover costs.

“The Federal and State Governments must urgently meet and act to address these issues if
Australia has any chance of being able to transition our energy market without bankrupting
businesses, families and our nation.”

Ends. Media Contact: Isaac Jeffrey 0407 083 890