Prior to these studies being undertaken, there was limited evidence and supporting information as to the relative benefits of a Renewable Energy Target versus a carbon price in terms of the transition to a low carbon energy system.
By taking multiple approaches to simulating the least cost technology mix to meet projected demand using only renewable energy generation technologies, the project has demonstrated that by optimally placing wind and solar PV plant around the NEM the variability in output can be minimised, and that combined with hydro, concentrating solar thermal and biogas to provide dispatchable generation for times of low output from wind and PV, the system can be run in a stable fashion.
The Achieving Cost-Affective Abatement project led by the University of Melbourne has produced state of the art modelling tools to be used to examine the pathway to a low carbon electrical energy system. The models have demonstrated that the pathway to large carbon abatement is technically feasible and viable from an economic point of view.
A low carbon energy system for the National Energy Market (NEM) is technically and economically feasible, and under certain circumstances may be cheaper than a business as usual scenario energy system with mostly fossil generation.
Read more about hybrid technologies.