To help secure Victoria’s energy system, the Australian Government will support the Portland aluminium smelter’s continued delivery of emergency power reserves to the market.
The Alcoa-owned Portland facility is a major user of electricity, representing around 10% of Victoria’s electricity demand. To ease pressure on the grid and prevent blackouts, particularly on hot days, Portland can reduce its demand.
The Australian Government will provide up to $76.8 million over four years from 2021-22 to 2024-25 to secure Portland’s participation in the Reliability and Emergency Reserve Trader (RERT) scheme. Under the RERT scheme, Portland can be paid to reduce its electricity use when the supply-demand balance is tight.
The Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) and AusNet also have an obligation to ensure Portland is able to continue to provide these energy services to the grid to deliver affordable, reliable power for consumers.