ESCOSA content iconElectricity generation licence exemption – Virtual Power Plant Operations, Electric Vehicle Charging Operators, and Sub 5MW Operators

  • Project Released: 3 Dec 2021
  • Project Closes: November 2025
  • Contact: Adam Abrahams-Zelko

Overview

Following the approval of the Minister for Minister for Energy and Mining, Hon D van Holst Pellekaan MP, the Commission has granted exemptions from the requirement to hold a licence to Virtual Power Plant operations, Electric Vehicle Charging Station operators and persons who carry on the generation of electricity in South Australia utilising generating plant that have a rated nameplate output of five megawatts or less.

Status

Current status is Initiate

  • Final
  • Final
  • Further info

Final

Extension to the temporary class exemptions

On 24 November 2021, the Commission, following the approval of the Minister for Energy and Mining, granted exemptions from the requirement to hold a licence to Virtual Power Plant operators (VPPs), Electric Vehicle Charing Station operators (EV charging stations), and sub-5MW generator operators. The exemptions were issued due to the commencement of a review of the electricity licensing framework by the Department for Energy and Mining.

The Department for Energy and Mining is continuing to review the licensing framework set out by the Electricity Act 1996 to determine if changes are required. 

The Commission has considered it appropriate to extend the temporary class exemptions for VPPs, EV charging stations, and sub-5MW generator operators, to align with the anticipated timeframe of the electricity licensing framework review. 

The temporary class exemptions for EV charging stations and sub-5MW generator operators will now expire on 30 November 2024. The temporary class exemption for VPPs will now expire on 30 November 2025. A copy of the extended exemptions can be accessed below. 

As a result of the exemptions, VPP, EV charging station, and sub 5MW operators who do not already hold a licence will not need to obtain and maintain a licence from the Commission.

For the period of the exemption, any existing VPP, EV charging station, and sub-5MW licence applications to the Commission will remain on hold and no further action is required.

 

Exemption history

Issued 3 December 2021

Following the approval of the Minister for Energy and Mining, Hon D van Holst Pellekaan MP, the Commission has granted an exemption from the requirement to hold a licence to persons who carry on virtual power plant (VPP) operations, electric vehicle (EV) charging station operations and the generation of electricity in South Australia utilising generating plant that has a rated nameplate output of five megawatts or less (Sub 5MW Operators). A copy of these exemptions can be accessed below.

As a result of the exemptions, VPP, EV and Sub 5MW Operators who do not already hold a licence will not need to obtain and maintain a licence from the Commission.

This exemption will remain in effect until 30 November 2023 (unless there is a need for the Commission or Minister to revoke the exemption on an earlier date). During this time, the Department of Energy and Mining will be reviewing the licensing framework set out by the Electricity Act 1996 to determine if changes are required, including whether a permanent exemption for VPP, EV and Sub 5MW Operators is warranted. The Department will shortly release an Issues Paper for stakeholder consultation.  

For the period of the exemption, the Commission will place any current licence applications on hold and no further action is required. 

End Accordion

Further information 

The current temporary class exemptions may be accessed on the licence register or refer to the publications below for additional information. Please email [email protected] if you have any further licensing related queries.
 

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