Today’s world relies on electricity to function. As New Zealand’s system operator we perform a central role in delivering electricity safely and reliably while helping to drive the transformation towards a more sustainable and decarbonised future.
As part of this transformation, we believe our role at the heart of the industry must also evolve and are committed to using innovative technologies, enabling markets to develop and creating ways of working that support future change and add value to the end consumer.
The power system is changing, and we need to evolve with it
New Zealand’s power system currently consists of mostly synchronous generation, with predictable behaviour and controls, resulting in a stable system with mature ancillary service markets to keep the grid stable. The power flow is typically from generation, through transmission and distribution, to demand, and the way we model this demand is well established.
Security of supply is managed effectively through the market, and new generation build has been signalled via prices. But recent uncertainty arising from government policy changes and the potential closure of large industrial users, as well as changes in technology and expectations of consumers, mean the context for the power system is changing.
The future state is going to be different. Around the world, an increase in renewable generation is producing a large increase in inverter-based generation resulting in potential challenges to the power system. An increase in distributed energy resources (DER) will also make demand more difficult to forecast and affect investment risk profiles. Current ancillary services may no longer be appropriate, but there will be opportunities to use new technologies, such as batteries with their fast response technology.
We have five strategic priorities that will help us navigate into the future:
- Play an active role in enabling New Zealand’s energy future
- Sustain our social licence to operate
- Match our infrastructure to need over time
- Evolve our services to meet our customers’ needs
- Accelerate our organisational effectiveness
Find out more about the System Operators strategic priorities in our Strategic Plan.