‘Minimum Demand’ records pushed lower in QLD on Sunday 11th September 2022 … re ‘Emergency backstop mechanism’

I’m working on other things, but thought it would be worth noting that the SMS alerts have started again today – this time to note the ongoing decline in minimum demand in recent years’ record for the Queensland region.

(A)  Recapping historical records

On 31st October 2021 we’d posted this ‘Updated tabulated record of minimum demand points – for each region, and NEM-wide – following 31st Oct 2021’, which itself was an update on this tabulated record of 18th October 2021.

We’ve not updated this table since, but note that some of the discrete records mentioned in the table have already been superseded!

For instance:

1)   In the record of 31st October 2021 the lowest point for ‘Market Demand*’ in the Queensland region was 3,672MW …

2)  But this has since been dropped lower (first to to 3,506MW on 7th August 2022 and then to 3,365MW on 14th August 2022)

(B)  Thus far, on Sunday 11th September 2022

Remembering that AEMO tends to talk about ‘Operational Demand’ (or ‘Grid Demand’) whereas we tend to look at ‘Market Demand’, as we hit publish on this article (around ~13:23 NEM time) we see that:

(B1)  New lowest point for demand in the QLD region

This is a snapshot of the initial run of SMS alerts:


… with the ‘Market Demand’ down at  3,316MW in the 12:50 dispatch interval …. which would be the new lowest point (at least at this point of the day).

Here’s a snapshot of the 12:55 dispatch interval in NEMwatch showing the QLD ‘Market Demand’ risen by 88MW, back up to 3,404MW five minutes later:


Given the time of day, it might be that the record at 12:50 lasts … at least until next weekend?

Using the AEMO’s measure of ‘Operational Demand’ the low point thus far is 3,469MW in the half-hour ending 13:00

1)  which would also be a new record low point.

2)  but will have to wait for AEMO to announce the official figures.

(B2)  Quite low in the NSW region

Also seen in the NEMwatch snapshot is that the NSW ‘Market Demand’ is also well down into the ‘blue zone’ … but (at 4,634MW) is still above the minimum demand in recent years’ record for the NSW region.

(B3)  Earlier forecast for lowest point for demand on a NEM-wide basis

A combination of these factors means that the NEM-wide demand is also pressing down.

We’ve been using this ‘14-day Overview (Whole NEM)’ trend produced with the ‘Trends Engine’ function within ez2view online  to keep tabs on the NEM-wide supply-demand balance:

1)   It had been forecast earlier that this would press lower (e.g. I’d seen a forecast for 12,922MW for the 13:00 dispatch interval);

2)  But the lowest we’ve seen NEM-Wide Market Demand drop (in reality) has been 13,331MW at 12:45 … which is not quite as low as the all-time minimum of 13,273MW.

That’s all for now…

PS1 about QLD’s proposed ‘Emergency backstop mechanism’

Early Sunday evening I noted that Chris Cormack shared this comment on LinkedIn, where he said:

‘Hi all – ICYMI in a couple of months time Energy Queensland is planning to make mandatory the installation of a device to manage excess solar in their network and the grid more generally. What they are planning is a $70 “kill switch” for every 10kVa or kW system installed – it will shutdown the solar system for both local and grid export- this will be controlled by the distribution network using an existing over the wires control system. Minimum Demand is Queensland is a problem (we hit a new minimum today) and rooftop solar is a big part – is this the right solution? Submissions to their consultation close soon….’

… and pointed to this page on the Department of Energy and Public Works website, which includes the note:

‘Ergon Energy Network and Energex are seeking feedback on the emergency backstop mechanism through a consultation paper and webinar.

Visit Energy Queensland’s Talking Energy website to view the paper, register for the webinar and have your say on the implementation of these new requirements.

A firm commencement date will be communicated once customer and industry feedback has been sought and taken on board.’

That page again is here, and:

1)  it links to this ‘Emergency Backstop Consultation Paper’ and these ‘Emergency Backstop FAQs’.

2)  consultations close on 7th October 2022 (now under 4 weeks away).

Also might be worth readers noting that this topic has been discussed:

1)  By Michael Bloch with ‘QLD Emergency Solar Backstop Mechanism Nears’ on 12th September via Solar Quotes.

2)  elsewhere?

PS2 about AEMO’s confirmation

As expected, the AEMO has confirmed the new low point – in this tweet and on LinkedIn here:


About the Author

Paul McArdle
One of three founders of Global-Roam back in 2000, Paul has been CEO of the company since that time. As an author on WattClarity, Paul's focus has been to help make the electricity market more understandable.

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