January 24, 2019 18:56:45
Temporary diesel power generators owned by the South Australian Government have been switched on for the first time, as the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) deals with record-breaking heat conditions across SA and Victoria.
The State Government said AEMO ordered the generators to deal with a supply shortfall in Victoria.
The diesel generators were installed by the former Weatherill government ahead of last summer as an emergency measure to prevent load shedding blackouts.
But the emergency reserves were not called upon last summer, with the market operator instead paying major industrial power customers to reduce their usage.
AEMO chief executive Aubrey Zibelman said demand for power had been higher than anticipated and the operator decided “having resources in case we lost another generator was a prudent thing to do”.
Victorian Energy Minister Lily D’Ambrosio said the state was seeing “an extraordinary heat event”.
“It is putting extreme pressure and stress on our energy system,” she said.
Heat records tumbled across South Australia today as Adelaide hit a sweltering 46.6 degrees Celsius, topping its 1939 heat record of 46.1C.
It also topped the nation’s previous capital city record of 46.4C set in Melbourne in 2009.
Port Augusta reached the highest temperature across South Australia peaking at 49.5C just after 4:00pm, while Ceduna set a record for the second day in a row reaching 48.6C.
More to come.
January 24, 2019 18:31:32