The Energy Corporation of NSW (EnergyCo) will be the Infrastructure Planner for the first five NSW Renewable Energy Zones set out in the Electricity Infrastructure Investment Act 2020. It will coordinate where the generation, long duration storage and firming capacity will be built.
EnergyCo is responsible for planning the location of Renewable Energy Zones and contracting and overseeing the suppliers delivering the transmission network infrastructure required to connect the generation built in Renewable Energy Zones to the electricity grid.
EnergyCo released the 20-year Network Infrastructure Strategy for NSW in May 2023. The strategy will guide the practical coordination of NSW network infrastructure to connect new generation and storage in NSW’s five Renewable Energy Zones. It will also meet the Electricity Infrastructure Investment Act 2020 objectives.
The Consumer Trustee is an independent role, appointed by the Minister for Energy under the Electricity Infrastructure Investment Act 2020.
The Consumer Trustee’s purpose is to act independently and in the long-term financial interests of NSW electricity customers to improve the affordability, reliability, security and sustainability of electricity supply. It does this through long-term planning and well-structured procurement processes.
The Consumer Trustee will play a pivotal role in:
- planning the level of investment in generation, storage, firming and network infrastructure over time in NSW
- authorising network infrastructure projects
- administering tenders to identify the best generation, firming and storage projects to offer Long-Term Energy Service Agreements
- appointing a Financial Trustee to establish, own and administer the Scheme Financial Vehicle and execute Long-Term Energy Service Agreements.
AEMO Services Ltd, a subsidiary of the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO), has been appointed as the NSW Consumer Trustee.
AEMO Services, as the Consumer Trustee, has published the 2023 Infrastructure Investment Objectives (IIO) Report. The IIO Report outlines to investors, developers, and the public what generation and long duration storage is required in NSW and when, while minimising costs for NSW consumers and maintaining reliable electricity supply. The IIO report sets out what is needed, including:
- the NSW Consumer Trustee’s 20-year Development Pathway for the construction of electricity infrastructure in NSW, and
- its 10-Year Plan for conducting competitive tenders for Long-term Energy Service Agreements (LTESAs) to give effect to the Development Pathway.
The Final 2023 IIO report will be published in December 2023. It is updated every two years.
Electricity Infrastructure Jobs Advocate
The Minister for Energy has appointed Dr Mark Apthorpe as the NSW Electricity Infrastructure Jobs Advocate. Dr Apthorpe is based in the Hunter and is the current chair of the Hunter Plant Operator Training School Ltd (HPOTS) and the Hunter section of the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT). He has also held senior executive roles in energy and logistics businesses.
In his role as Jobs Advocate, Dr Apthorpe advises the Minister on:
- strategies and incentives to encourage investment, development, workforce development, employment, education and training in the energy sector as New South Wales transitions to renewable energy. His focus will be on regional NSW, including the Hunter, Central Coast, Illawarra, Far West, South West, New England and Central West regions of New South Wales.
- road, rail and port infrastructure required in the regions specified above to promote export opportunities for generation, storage and network technology.
The Jobs Advocate is required to report to the Minister on his activities as soon as practicable after being appointed, and once a year after the first report. Dr Apthorpe submitted his first report to the Minister in June 2022.
The report outlines Dr Apthorpe’s findings on employment, training and workforce development in the REZs and infrastructure that promotes export opportunities for generation, storage and network technology.
These observations are informed by consultation with Roadmap entities, government agencies, local councils and business and community stakeholders. The report also sets out the Jobs Advocate’s priorities over the coming year and suggests areas for further NSW Government consideration.
Read the media release for more information about Dr Apthorpe's appointment.
Renewable Energy Sector Board
The Minister for Energy has appointed the Renewable Energy Sector Board co-chairs and members, and the NSW Government has made regulations on the Board’s functions and procedures. The Board has representatives from unions, the steel, electricity and manufacturing sectors, the renewable energy industry, and electricity customers and held its first meeting on 5 March 2021.
The Board has developed a plan for the NSW renewable energy sector to achieve objectives in relation to the construction of generation, storage and network infrastructure in a cost effective way. These objectives include:
- the use of locally produced and supplied goods and services
- employment of suitable qualified local workers
- opportunities for apprentices and trainees.
The Minister has approved the plan.
The Board’s plan also advises the NSW Government on additional actions intended to drive sustainable growth and competitiveness of local industries and realise benefits for local workers and communities.
The NSW Government supports, or supports in principle, all 15 of the Board’s recommendations. Download a copy of the NSW Government’s response to the NSW Renewable Energy Sector Board’s advice.
To inform development of the Board’s plan, the Office of Energy and Climate Change commissioned the following studies:
- ACIL Allen’s Consumer costs and economic benefits for Renewable Energy Sector Board’s Plan
- MBB Group’s Supply Chain Analysis Report: NSW Electricity Infrastructure
- MBB Group’s WHS Baseline and Opportunities Study: Renewable Energy Sector
- ISF and SGS Economics and Planning’s Employment, Skills and Supply Chains: Renewable Energy in NSW – Final Report
- ISF and SGS Economics and Planning’s Employment, Skills and Supply Chains: Renewable Energy in NSW – Appendices
- Daniel Walton, National Secretary, Australian Workers’ Union
- Craig Memery, Director, Energy and Water Consumers’ Advocacy Program, PIAC
- Mark Cain, Chief Executive, Australian Steel Institute
- John Coyle, Director, Varley Group
- Anita Talberg, Policy Director Workforce Development, Clean Energy Council
- Grahame Kelly, General Secretary, CFMEU (Mining and Energy Division)
- James Hay, Chief Executive, Energy Corporation of NSW
- Brian Salter, Executive General Manager, Legal, Governance & Risk, Transgrid
- Trevor Gauld, National Policy Officer, Electrical Trades Union
- Matthew Robertson, National Strategy & Market Development Manager, BlueScope Steel Australia
- Stacey Sleeman, Chief Financial Officer & Company Secretary, Tomago Aluminium
- Rod Stowe, former NSW Fair Trading Commissioner
- Cory Wright, State Secretary, Australian Manufacturing Workers’ Union
Australian Energy Regulator
The Australian Energy Regulator has a number of statutory functions under the Electricity Infrastructure Investment Act 2020, including determining the amount payable to network operators for network infrastructure projects. Its functions may be divided, and more than one body or person may be appointed.
On 12 November 2021, the NSW Government appointed the Australian Energy Regulator (AER) as a regulator under the NSW Electricity Roadmap.
The key functions the AER has been appointed to under the Electricity Infrastructure Investment Act 2020 include:
- making 5-year revenue determinations for network infrastructure projects authorised by the Consumer Trustee, including the calculation of the prudent, efficient and reasonable capital costs of these projects
- making annual contribution determinations in relation to the Electricity Infrastructure Fund
- approving a risk management framework developed by the Consumer Trustee
- reviewing tender rules in relation to long-term energy service agreements.
The Energy Security Target Monitor
The NSW Government has appointed the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) as the Energy Security Target (EST) Monitor for the Electricity Infrastructure Roadmap, under the Electricity Infrastructure Investment Act 2020 (EII Act).
Under the appointment, AEMO is responsible for calculating and setting a 10 year energy security target for NSW. This target is designed to provide market certainty as it ensures that there will be reliable supplies of electricity available to meet electricity demands over the medium term. Find out more about Energy Security Target Monitor
Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal NSW
In December 2021, the Minister for Energy (Minister) appointed IPART as a regulator under the EII Act. A key function of IPART’s role is to prepare an annual report on the exercise of functions under the EII Act by the Consumer Trustee, the Financial Trustee, the Infrastructure Planner and the Regulator.
IPART is also responsible for undertaking performance audits on the entities delivering the Roadmap, as well as recommending the Renewable Energy Sector Board’s plan to the Minister, to ensure it protects the financial interests of NSW electricity consumers and is consistent with Australia’s international trade obligations.