In 2017 Victoria enshrined its renewable energy targets into law via the Renewable Energy (Jobs and Investment) Act 2017 (Vic). The VRET aims to ensure that 25 per cent of the State’s electricity generation comes from renewable sources by 2020, and 40 per cent by 2025.
Through the reverse auction program, the Victorian Government awarded commercial contracts in support of over 900 MW of new wind and solar energy generation.
The Victorian Government selected a reverse auction mechanism to support achievement of the VRET to incentivise renewable energy in Victoria in a way that is reflective of the market and allows the Government to learn from practice and adapt to changes in technology costs, broader market conditions and national policy settings when conducting the auction.
MinterEllison's role in the design and implementation of the reverse auction involved:
- support agreement design;
- parallel negotiation of support agreements;
- providing tender process and risk mitigation advice;
- providing overarching conformance and consistency advice to maximise competitive tension and secure value for money outcomes for the Victorian Government; and
- working with DELWP's other legal, technical and commercial advisors throughout the RFP process.
"We've worked in close partnership with DELWP on a number of key Victorian Government energy and climate change initiatives, and we are extremely proud to have helped roll out the VRET reverse auction for Victoria," said Kylie Diwell. "In a time of considerable national uncertainty regarding energy and climate policy, we assisted the Victorian Government to design and implement the reverse auction process which achieves both private sector commitment and a value for money outcome for the State, providing a strong platform for kick-starting Victoria's renewable energy future."
"In addition to VRET we've advised DELWP on the $50 million Energy Storage Initiative, the Energy for the Regions Program where we acted for Regional Development Victoria in its $100 million grant funding program for the delivery of gas to regional Victorian towns, and the CarbonNet Project where we advised the Victorian Government on its long-term objectives of developing a carbon capture and storage network."
The MinterEllison team was led by Kylie Diwell (Partner). She was supported by Peter Block (Partner), Darshini Nanthakumar (Senior Associate) and Fiona Lewis (Special Counsel).