The Australian Capital Territory (ACT) will hold an auction for 200MW of wind power this year, its government announced today.
The ACT – the territory that includes Australia’s capital city Canberra –
said the auction will be the biggest step yet towards its ambitious 90% renewable
energy target for 2020.
According to environment minister Simon Corbell, staging the process
this year means the ACT can benefit from the wider uncertainty dogging Australian
wind development under the less sympathetic regime of a federal Coalition government
led by Tony Abbott, which is scrapping or reviewing key policies.
Corbell said: "Because of the Commonwealth Renewable Energy Target
(RET) review, wind is currently a buyer's market.
“By moving quickly, the ACT can expect lower prices now than if we were
to defer the required investments to a later time.”
The reverse auction will be open to regional power producers “but also
to generators further afield in circumstances where they demonstrate
exceptional local economic development benefits and competitive pricing”,
"Opening up the wind auction to a geographically broader base means
more competition, more innovation and potentially lower prices. But the
conditions on broader participation mean this cannot be at the expense of local
The wind output bought via the process is expected to supply almost a quarter
of the ACT’s power needs, equivalent to about 80,000 Canberra homes, said the
No date was announced for the auction, but a statement said it will be completed
The territory expects the auction to cost about A$1.30 ($1.16) per
household per week, as part of the already-announced A$4 per week cost of meeting
the 2020 renewables goal.