Posts tagged #Ann Whitfield

ElectraNet public forums in Port Lincoln

November 2017


HoustonKemp has been working with ElectraNet on a RIT-T assessment of options for electricity transmission upgrades on the Eyre Peninsula.  We have undertaken the wholesale market modelling for the RIT-T assessment and also applied real option valuation – the first time this has been done formally for a RIT-T.  Ann Whitfield, Tom Graham and Sam Forrest are presenting on this approach at the ElectraNet public forums in Port Lincoln (November 20) and Adelaide (November 27).  ElectraNet’s RIT-T assessment can be accessed here.

Posted on November 23, 2017 and filed under Reports.

HSC Economics at Sydney University

August 2017

Ann Whitfield is pleased to be speaking at an upcoming event aimed at high school economics students considering studying economics at university. The event is to be held by the School of Economics at the Charles Perkins Centre, University of Sydney on Tuesday 5th September from 4pm. Ann is one of several economists who will be speaking at this event, which also includes a hands-on workshop session. For more information on the event, or to register to attend please click here.

Posted on August 21, 2017 and filed under Presentations.

Dispute over regulatory investment test outcome

May 2017

HoustonKemp provided an independent report in relation to the first formal dispute of a regulatory investment test outcome.  The review related to SA Power Network’s RIT-D assessment of the Kangaroo Island submarine cable.  We were asked by the AER to consider whether the RIT-D had been applied in accordance with the regulatory framework and, if not, whether this is likely to have materially affected the outcome.  Our report has been published by the AER is and available here.

Posted on May 22, 2017 and filed under Reports.

Powering Sydney's Future

May 2017

As part of its Powering Sydney’s Future (PSF) RIT-T assessment, TransGrid has published a report prepared by HoustonKemp on the issues to be considered in determining a commercial discount rate for a RIT-T application.  Our report also provides a “first-pass” indicative commercial discount rate that we consider appropriate to apply to the PSF RIT-T.  Our report can be accessed here.


Posted on May 9, 2017 and filed under Reports.

Retail margin methodology

May 2017

HoustonKemp has prepared a report for ActewAGL Retail, in relation to the ICRC’s draft decision to change the methodology for determining the retail margin component of regulated electricity standing offer prices. We considered the adequacy of the ICRC’s approach in light of the factors that may be expected to affect the costs recovered by the retail margin, the rationale provided by the ICRC and the approach adopted by other regulators. Our conclusion is that the ICRC’s central assumption that retail margin costs move in line with changes to CPI is not supported by any evidence, and our own assessment indicates that there are other drivers of these costs.  Our report is available here.

Posted on May 4, 2017 and filed under Reports.

VCR estimates and transmission reliability

November 2016

We were engaged by TransGrid to determine Value of Customer Reliability (VCR) estimates suitable for customers experiencing low probability but high impact supply outages in the Sydney CBD and Inner Suburbs regions.  We were asked to determine these VCR estimates by drawing on existing, publicly available VCR studies.  The values we derived were $90/kWh for Inner Suburbs customers and $150-$192/kWh for customers in the Sydney CBD. 

IPART has subsequently adopted our $90/kWh estimate in recommending reliability standards to apply to the Inner Sydney transmission network from 1 July 2018, available here.

Posted on November 2, 2016 and filed under Reports.

Microgrids – into the void

June 2016

Ann Whitfield presented at the ENA Networks 2016 conference in Adelaide.  She spoke about the current lack of a framework for customers ‘to go off grid’, both in cases where the network business has identified that that would be a lower cost solution overall to supplying those customers, and in cases where a group of customers have themselves decided that they would like to form a separate microgrid.  In the absence of a framework, network businesses will be spending above efficient costs, and customer choice in electricity supply risks being frustrated.  Ann’s presentation can be found here.

Posted on June 9, 2016 and filed under Presentations.

Australian Energy Storage Alliance conference in Sydney

June 2016

Ann Whitfield recently presented at a Market Update Briefing held as part of the Australian Energy Storage Alliance conference in Sydney.  Ann spoke to a group of potential investors in the Australian storage sector on the regulatory and institutional arrangements applying in the National Electricity Market, and in particular how the application and development of these arrangements will affect the investment opportunities for both grid-scale storage and behind-the-meter storage.  Ann’s presentation is available here.


Posted on June 9, 2016 and filed under Presentations.

Ann Whitfield to speak at Electricity Networks 2016 – Energy in Transition, Adelaide

March 2016

Ann Whitfield will be part of a session on Innovating Regulatory Frameworks at Energy Networks 2016.  Ann will be speaking on the topic ‘Electricity Micro-grids – into the Void?’.  The conference, organised by the Energy Networks Association, is being held in Adelaide 18-20 May 2016.  More information on the session and the conference can be found here.

Posted on March 9, 2016 and filed under Announcements.

AER Determination for ActewAGL Distribution

13 February 2015

Greg Houston prepared an expert report for ActewAGL Distribution, evaluating the Australian Energy Regulator’s  draft distribution determination for the 2015–19 regulatory control period. Greg’s report, prepared with the assistance of Ann Whitfield and Dale Yeats, provides an opinion on whether the AER’s determination is likely to contribute to the achievement of the National Electricity Objective (NEO) and to represent a materially preferable NEO decision.  Our report can be found here.

Posted on March 8, 2015 and filed under Reports.

Efficiency Benefit Sharing Schemes

11 February 2015

Ann Whitfield, Brendan Quach and Ehson Shirazi prepared a report for ActewAGL Distribution illustrating Efficiency Benefit Sharing Schemes that could be applied where the network business’ operating expenditure allowance in the following regulatory period is set on the basis of either the network’s revealed opex costs or by reference to comparative efficiency.  Our report is here.

Posted on March 2, 2015 and filed under Reports.

Electricity Networks Service Standards: An Overview

2 September 2014

The NSW Department of Premier and Cabinet has released a report it commissioned from HoustonKemp. The report provides a summary of the reliability standards applying to the NSW electricity transmission and distribution businesses, and describes the current framework under which these standards are set.

The report was commissioned in the context of the proposed partial lease of the NSW electricity network businesses. It highlights that the framework for setting reliability standards for these network businesses, and the reliability standards themselves, are independent of ownership and therefore will not change as a consequence of the proposed partial lease of the businesses.

The report is available here.

Posted on September 2, 2014 and filed under Reports.

Comments on AER Draft Benchmarking Report

21 August 2014

Ann Whitfield and Oliver Nunn provided a report for Grid Australia commenting on the AER’s draft Annual Benchmarking Report  for Electricity Transmission Network Service Providers, which notes the limitations of applying the performance measures included in the report to the task of assessing efficient capex and opex as part of a regulatory determination.  Our report is here.

Posted on September 1, 2014 and filed under Reports.