ARENA to Fund USD 12.9 million to AEMO for its Distributed Energy Project

The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) has today announced USD 12.9 million in funding to the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) for the development of a major Victorian Distributed Energy Resources (DER) Marketplace trial named Project EDGE (Energy Demand and Generation Exchange).

Project EDGE is a multi-year project to demonstrate an off-market, proof-of-concept Distributed Energy Resource (DER) Marketplace that operates DER to provide both wholesale and local network services within the limitations of a specific area of the power distribution grid.

With a total project cost of USD 28 million, the leading organization has been partnered with Ausnet Electricity Services and Mondo Power to coordinate the development of a replicable model for the trading of electricity and grid services from DER that can be expanded across the National Electricity Market (NEM).

Project Edge will initially involve around 50 residential customers, and then reach up to 1000 residential, commercial, and industrial customers.
The three-year trial will create a model market for DER to be dispatched and traded as part of the NEM.

Registered market participants, using customers’ DER, will submit bids to the market platform, and in turn, will make these bids visible to distribution networks to increase the reliability and flexibility of the whole system.

ARENA’s funding will support the development of the software and support systems of the first DER marketplace in Australia, aiming to provide necessary insight and visibility over the distribution electricity system to AEMO and network operators to optimally balance the provision of grid services, additional services, and energy from DER within the operational constraints of the distribution network.

Darren Miller, CEO ARENA, said, “This landmark trial would provide the blueprint for integrating DER into the grid. As the uptake of rooftop solar, home batteries, home energy management systems, electric vehicles, and smart appliances is expected to grow, it is clear that these technologies are going to transform our electricity system.”

This trial will help to develop trading mechanisms to maximize the economic benefits to customers and the system and minimize the costs of supply to all energy customers. We look forward to developing a marketplace for the services these technologies can provide, and paving the way for widespread adoption across Australia,” he further added.

AEMO’s Executive General Manager of Emerging Markets and Services, Violette Mouchaileh commented, “AEMO is working with the industry to design and test a world-first, two-way energy system and sophisticated market for consumers to participate in the NEM.”

He also enlightened, “Our trial with AusNet Services and Mondo, and financial support from ARENA, will facilitate the trading of aggregated electricity services from energy devices in peoples’ homes and businesses in north-east Victoria.”

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