According to The Australian Financial Review, power consumption is going to remain flat for the next 20 years despite a 30 per cent increase in population growth as households and businesses cut their power usage and embrace new technologies to avoid rising power prices, according to the Australian Energy Market Operator.
With double-digit price increases to hit from this weekend, the electricity forecasts report said the prediction of static consumption was partly the result of consumers changing their behaviour, by becoming more energy efficient and generating their own power in "behind the meter" initiatives such as solar photovoltaic.
This off-sets an increase in energy consumption from big industrial users such as the $80 billion liquified natural gas industry in Queensland which has been a big driver in power usage in the National Electricity Market in the past few years.
The report confirms the profound changes underway in the energy market as the influx of renewables and new technologies such as battery storage undermine the status quo.
"The recent spike in rooftop PV installations, and reported actions by large consumers, provide some evidence that many businesses and households are already acting, and this trend is forecast to continue, supported by projected falling costs for PV systems, battery storage, and energy-efficient appliances," the report said.
The report predicted the uptake of rooftop solar PV would remain strong until the late 2020s then level off, with about 20,000 megawatts of installed rooftop PV by 2037. The shift to solar PV will move peak demand on the grid until later in the day.
Residential and commercial battery storage is expected to exceed 5500 megawatts by 2037 - an increase of 2000 megawatts compared to last year's 20 year forecast, the report found.
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