The work of EAGA and the Greenhouse Alliances intersects with Victoria’s Distribution and Network Service Providers (DNSP) in a number of ways. To assist Local Governments and DNSPs to establish a shared vision for an intelligent sustainable energy network, an engagement framework has been developed to guide collaborative activities between the two sectors.
The framework includes a series of policy statements which detail the specific outcomes that councils are seeking to achieve through structured a coordinated engagement with distribution businesses, across the areas of:
- Public Lighting
- Demand Management
- New Technologies
- Data Exchange
- Climate Change Adaptation
Under the guidance of the framework, a number of current and past initiatives have been undertaken:
Electricity Distribution Price Review (EDPR)
Every five years, the Greenhouse Alliances develop a joint submission to the regulatory process on behalf of the Victorian Local Government sector. The submissions provided a technical analysis and evaluation of the five regulatory pricing proposals provided by Victoria’s electricity distribution businesses, with the objective of capturing cost savings for councils through public lighting charges and supporting innovative initiatives that reduce emissions. The EAGA led response to the 2016 pricing determination will save Victorian council $22M over the 2016-20 regualtory period. Read more on the EDPR here.
Customer Consultative Committees
Local Government’s are represented on the primary stakeholder consultation committees for each of the State’s distribution businesses by their Alliance Executive Officers. This enables key issues and opportunities to be raised directly with the DNSP executive teams on a regular basis. EAGA’s Executive Officer is a standing member on AusNet Services Customer Consultative Committee.
Smart lighting trials
Following Glen Eira’s successful smart lighting trial (in partnership with United Energy), EAGA members are now participating in a program to enable metering of variable street lighting dimming, trimming and other energy savings options so that councils can gain the benefit of these functions on their bills. The primary work is expected to take 6-9 months, with a further 12 months for AEMO to progress changes to the National Energy Rules.
United Energy’s residential demand management program was established in 2015 and pays households for changing their behaviours in response during peak times of demand, typically summer days over 35 degrees and last for 3 hours. The 2018/19 summer program was promoted in partnership with a number of councils across the region, with customers in the United Energy network receiving over $250,000 in incentives for reducing their overall consumption by 31.46 MWh, or 28.31 tonnes of CO2 equivalent. A number of MOUs of have entered into between United Energy and councils detailing the collaborative activities for the 2019/20 summer period.
Land use planning and network planning
Currently, electricity network planning and land-use planning occur in isolation, meaning long term, sustainable energy opportunities are missed. To address this lack of coordination, EAGA partnered with NAGA in 2017 to deliver the Future Energy Planning project – a cross sector engagement project seeking to build better collaboration between electricity networks and local government planners in Victoria.