August 2016 Tasmanian Energy Newsletter

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Tasmanian Energy News

Tasmanian gas report 
The challenges facing Tasmania's energy sector continue to dominate the news. While all the focus of recent months has been on our hydro system and the impact of drought and the Basslink failure, the gas industry has been largely overlooked - until now.

Goanna undertook the first comprehensive analysis of Tasmania's 13-year old gas industry for the Tasmanian Small Business Council (TSBC). The report's findings and recommendations were released on 22 August.
What did we find? In short, the state's gas market is a wasted resource and at significant risk of failure without comprehensive reform to make it more competitive and attractive.
Evidence to date shows the gas market has failed business consumers and every effort must be made to reduce gas prices and transmissions costs - the highest in Australia - while at the same time creating a level playing field with the existing electricity industry in Tasmania.
TSBC's Executive Officer Robert Mallett described the report as a wake-up call for the Tasmanian Government and the gas industry. Goanna agrees. The gas market has a problem and finding the right solutions is a shared responsibility not just the Government's. The first logical step is conducting a major review of the gas market and its performance.
The report The Tasmanian Gas Market can be found at Tas Gas Report along with the TSBC's media release at TSBC gas media release

Energy crisis inquiries

Remember the energy crisis? How things can change so quickly in Tasmania. From a record low of 12.8 per cent on 11 April and Basslink broken, hydro storages have rebounded at an incredible rate over the past three months to be 37.9 per cent and rising as at 22 August. That's pretty much around where they should be for this time of the year.  

Basslink returned to service on 13 June and Tasmania is now able to export electricity to Victoria thanks to both the rally in National Electricity Market spot prices and the above average winter rainfall which has seen the smaller lakes, which have minimal storage capacity, overflowing and enabling Hydro Tasmania to export to avoid spilling.

The focus is now on finding out how the crisis happened and what Tasmania needs to do to ensure it is never repeated.

On August 4, Marc White from Goanna gave evidence to the Joint Parliamentary Standing Committee of Public Accounts investigating the financial position and performance of Tasmania's electricity businesses.

Marc briefed the Committee on Goanna's experiences with consumers during the crisis and the exposure of many businesses to higher prices, as well as taking questions from Committee members. Goanna's contribution can be found from Page 20 of the following link Public Accounts Committee August 4

The other inquiry into Tasmania's energy situation has just begun its work. The independent Energy Security Taskforce to be chaired by Geoff Willis is undertaking a risk assessment of Tasmania's energy security position in the wake of the recent electricity supply shortages. Goanna Energy is working closely with the Tasmanian Small Business Council on a submission to the taskforce due by 9 September. Further information on the Taskforce can be found at Energy Security Taskforce

Market update

Despite the return to service of Basslink, record inflows and a return to more normal dam levels, forward wholesale contract prices for delivery in the 2016/17 financial year, which were around 4.4c/kWh in March 2015, finished the financial year at over 6c/kWh. This represented a 55 per cent increase. See Goanna's energy and renewables price graphs at TasEnergy Market Update for more information.

This year's events smashed the myths that "leaving your 1 July energy recontracting to the last week in June is always the best strategy" and "things would return to normal after Basslink was reconnected". Download our presentation to the 22 March 2016 EUAA Tasmanian Energy Forum at Presentation to understand why. 

Residential and small business consumers on regulated tariffs will see a 3.43 per cent increase in their bills from 1 July 2016, due mainly to the increases in the wholesale market and Mandatory Renewable Energy Certificate costs. The increase could have been far more significant had it not been for TasNetworks' Energy Transport rates reducing by around 8 per cent. 

Goanna Energy briefs

Goanna had another record-smashing start to the year with a $166,000 overbilling recovery for one Tasmanian client. This broke our previous record of $124,000 for a Tasmanian council. Since its formation in 2007, Goanna has saved its Tasmanian business clients over $8 million in energy costs.
We recently launched our new multi-site, cloud-based energy intelligence service for mobiles, tablets and PCs. This service includes, daily site monitoring, budget to actuals, accruals, variance alerts and forensic bill validation. You can find out more by contacting Marc on 6223 7253.
Goanna is finalising a report to the Tasmanian Small Business Council on cross-subsidies in Tasmanian electricity tariffs and the impact they have on small business. This is the result of a long-standing concern that small business in Tasmania is currently subsidising other electricity tariffs. The report will be released by the TSBC later this year and is guaranteed to generate some public debate.
We are proud to be sponsoring the UTAS Isolated Power Systems workshop to be held on Flinders Island in November. More information on this unique event can be found at Workshop flyer
Goanna is delighted to once again sponsor the Queechy High School Engineering F1 Team. The F1 in Schools Technology Challenge is the world’s largest secondary school technology program and involves over nine million students from 17,000 schools in 31 nations. More information on the program can be found at F1 in schools We are also proud to support the Hutchins Year 11 STEM class who attended the Kid-Wind Competition in New Orleans, where the lads proudly took out 3rd place. More information can be found at kid wind
Find out more

Want to know more about Goanna Energy or any of these stories? Is there anything we can do to help your business reduce its energy costs? Phone Marc White on 0418 596 162 for more information or follow him on Twitter at

While Goanna has endeavored to ensure that the information contained within this newsletter is accurate, we do not make any warranties or representations in relation to the accuracy of the information contained herein.
This newsletter is intended as general advice only and is not intended to constitute personal financial product advice. It is has been prepared without taking into account the personal circumstances, financial needs or objectives of any one person or organisation. Accordingly, individuals or organisations who seek to rely on information contained within this newsletter should undertake their own independent enquiries and seek legal or financial advice prior to doing so.
Disclosure: Tasmanian Energy Brokers Pty Ltd is an affiliated business of Goanna Energy Consulting Pty Ltd.


August highlights
  • Challenges for the gas industry
  • Energy crisis over - now come the inquiries
  • Goanna saves customer $166,000
Want to know more?

Talk to Goanna's Marc White on 0418 596162 or follow him on Twitter
2016 Goanna Energy Consulting Pty Ltd. All rights reserved.

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