AGL will fully consider AEMO’s final report into the SA Black System Event on 28 September 2016 over the coming days and weeks and may respond to it in more detail at a later date.

However, we would note the following:

  • AGL’s wind farms performed in accordance with their design, the generator performance standards and their licensing requirements.
  • Like all generators connected to the transmission network, AGL’s wind turbines have systems which enable the equipment to ‘ride through’ voltage fluctuations when there are faults in the system. On 28 September all of AGL’s active turbines rode through at least three of the multiple successive system faults that occurred.
  • AGL agrees with AEMO’s comments that the performance standards do not include specific minimum requirements to address the circumstances of 28 September 2016.
  • Both AEMO and ElectraNet have been involved in testing and modelling the fault ride through capability of AGL’s wind turbines and approved their connection to the network.
  • AGL provided AEMO with sufficient technical information for AEMO to understand that the ability of the turbines to ride through voltage fluctuations was time limited. 
  • The events that occurred on the day were unprecedented. Performance standards do not require equipment to ride through such extreme circumstances.
  • AGL notes AEMO’s acknowledgement that the failure to undertake a reassessment of power system contingencies as updated weather forecasts were received was a weakness in its process. AGL believes that further questions remain to be answered as to how AEMO set up the network on the day. For example, why was there full reliance on the interconnector and wind? AGL notes in this context that AEMO has now made specific recommendations directed at ensuring system strength and stability in circumstances where the interconnect may trip or fail. 

AGL has safely run its wind turbines in South Australia for the past nine years and is confident wind generation does not degrade the reliability of the electricity system. Wind generation is a valuable part of the energy system and contributes positively to the reliability and security of the system.

About AGL
AGL is one of Australia’s leading integrated energy companies. It is taking action to responsibly reduce its greenhouse gas emissions while providing secure and affordable energy to its customers. Drawing on over 175 years of experience, AGL serves its customers throughout eastern Australia with meeting their energy requirements, including gas, electricity, solar PV and related products and services. AGL has a diverse power generation portfolio including base, peaking and intermediate generation plants, spread across traditional thermal generation as well as renewable sources including hydro, wind, solar, landfill gas and biomass.

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