Articles by 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.




A brief look at peak NEM-Wide Demand over recent winters

This weekend, we have prepared this analysis of the entries we received for our “Peak Demand Forecaster” competition for winter 2009.

In conjunction with this analysis, we thought it would be of interest to also incorporate this chart (generated from a BETA version of the NEM-Review v6 software package) to highlight how the peak NEM-Wide demand unfolded over the previous winters…



Price cap lifted, and Tassie price spikes again

We reported previously that a price cap was invoked in Tasmania on Tuesday 16th June because the Cumulative Price Threshold was reached. In official terminology, this was an Administered Price Period (APP). At 04:00AM this morning, NEMMCO released a market notice advising the market that the APP had been lifted…


Tassie hits the Cumulative Price Threshold

For only the third occasion in the 10 1/2 years that the NEM has been operational, the Cumulative Price Threshold (CPT) has been reached. Yesterday evening, the CPT was reached in the Tasmanian region.



A review of recent winters in the NEM

For those who weren’t aware, Winter 2009 has seen us offer our “Who’s the Best Demand Forecaster in the NEM” challenge – as a chance for the market to redeem itself, following what happened in summer 2008-09 (when the market surprised us all).


Prices Surge in QLD and NSW as Demand Climbs

We noted yesterday (Wednesday 10th June) that NEM-wide demand climbed past 32,000MW for the first time this winter.

The following evening saw demand climb to similar levels (a peak of 32,054MW at 18:20 – so 35MW higher than the previous night). However the situation on Thursday night was different in two key ways…








Earth Hour

“Earth Hour” was a concept developed by the WWF to promote awareness of the risks of climate change. It first ran just in Sydney in 2007, and generated considerable interest,…


Earth Hour 2007 – Impact on Australia’s National Electricity Market

Since the first event in Sydney, 2007, Earth Hour has been held at the same time on two successive years, with an increasing number of locations around the world participating – and still continues to galvanise commentary by supporters and detractors alike. Following the conclusion of Earth Hour 2009, out of interest we thought we’d have a closer look at what happened in Australia’s National Electricity Market over the period of Earth Hour 2007.




Massive Demand, Huge Prices, Load Shedding and the Cumulative Price Threshold (and lessons learnt?)

Wednesday 28th January saw demand across the NEM jump to unprecedented levels, setting a new record of 34,843MW at 16:00 NEM time. On Thursday 29th January, we saw the demand increase still further, leading to prices that stayed high for much of the day (to the point where the Cumulative Price Threshold was reached in VIC and SA and price caps were imposed), and a relatively small amount of involuntary load shedding occurring in VIC and SA.


And the winner for summer 08-09 is…

We noted yesterday, in the midst of the excitement, that the previous NEM-wide demand record had been beaten, by virtue of the heatwave assaulting VIC and SA over the day. We spoke too soon, however, as demand continued to climb through the afternoon.