Consultation overview

The government is currently investigating the need for additional electricity market measures that support affordable, reliable and resilient electricity supply, while accelerating the transition to a more renewable electricity system.

Feedback is invited on whether additional measures may be needed during the energy transition to improve:

  • generation
  • transmission
  • distribution
  • how and when consumers use electricity.

MBIE’s consultation asks what changes we might need, and what else the government can do to ensure New Zealanders benefit from a reliable and affordable electricity supply. 

This consultation closed on 2 November 2023.

Measures for transition to an expanded and highly renewable electricity system | MBIE(external link)

Our recommendations

We welcome the focus of this consultation paper on measures to support the transition to a renewable electricity system. In particular, we welcome discussion of current regulatory settings, and whether they are fit for purpose to support the transition and deliver the outcomes consumers expect. We note that:

  • the major question for consumers is whether they're paying inflated prices as a result of current arrangements. Delays in moving to a renewable electricity system also inevitably mean there will be delays in the price and environmental benefits consumers should be able to expect from the transition
  • prioritisation of measures needs to be informed by robust analysis, which recognises the potential contribution demand flexibility can make to the electricity system. Analysis must also consider other developments, such as the likely contribution microgrids will play in delivering an electricity system that meets consumer needs
  • support for battery energy storage systems should be considered as storage systems will play a key role in a renewable electricity system. Sufficient storage to offset thermal base load will need to be available to assist in management of dry years and intermittent generation
  • it will be crucial to ensure consumers are represented in decision-making processes about investment in and maintenance of a resilient national grid
  • reliable data on existing network capacity is essential to ensure informed decision making both by networks themselves and by the regulator. Data shortfalls therefore need to be addressed.

We recommend this submission is read alongside other papers and submissions, specifically:

Promoting competition in the wholesale electricity market in the transition towards 100% renewable electricity

Assessing the New Zealand wholesale electricity market

Price discovery in a renewables-based electricity system

Targeted reform of distribution pricing