Top Australia regulator sees no future for coal-fired generators.

14 05 2021 | 12:07

Australia’s fleet of ageing coal fired generators are going broke and are likely to become less reliable in the future as operators stop maintaining them, according to the chair of the federal government’s key energy advisory body.

Chair of the Energy Security Board, Kerry Schott told the Smart Energy Conference on Wednesday that there was no need to worry about the ongoing presence of coal fired power stations in the electricity market, telling the conference that economic pressures on incumbent generators was mounting and will push them out of the market.

“The coal generators are going broke. So those of you who are worried about coal retiring, please don’t. It’s happening, and it’s happening for commercial reasons,” Schott said.

“Just have a think about the way electricity gets dispatched – they get dispatched on the basis of who’s the cheapest, and the cheapest is wind and solar. They have fuel costs that are zero. So their marginal cost is effectively zero.

“But if you run a coal plant, you’re buying coal, and you could well be, if you’re buying black coal, paying $40 a tonne, and you’re burning this stuff because of the technology, every minute of the day,” Schott added.



13 May 2021