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    Australia's east coast power crisis not a gas crisis: EnergyQuest

Summary

Electricity demand has increased but coal generation has fallen due to coal outages and closures and problems with coal supply in NSW, it said.

by: Shardul Sharma

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Australia's east coast power crisis not a gas crisis: EnergyQuest

The ongoing energy price crisis in Australia's east coast states is not a gas crisis, energy consultant EnergyQuest said on June 3.

“I see the east coast energy price crisis as more an electricity crisis than a gas crisis. Electricity demand has increased but coal generation has fallen due to coal outages and closures and problems with coal supply in NSW,” EnergyQuest CEO Graeme Bethune said. “Renewables have only been able to partially fill the gap so gas-use has jumped from supplying 6% of NEM [national energy market] generation in May 2021 to 9% in May 2022, with predictable gas price consequences."

According to EnergyQuest, there has not been any big change in LNG exports. In May 2022 the east coast exported 1.98mn metric tons of LNG, down slightly from 2.07mn mt in April and the same as 1.98mn mt in May 2021.

The NEM data shows that east coast coal-based power generation was 10,312 GWh, down 7.8% year/year in May while gas-based power generation stood at 1,600 GWh, up 55% yr/yr.

The Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) on June 2 enforced a cap on gas prices in some east coast states owing to the recent rise in wholesale prices. It has also announced a guarantee mechanism to call on more gas supply.