Powerlines in Perth, WA

The Western Australia State Government has announced an across-the-board power supply allocation will soon be in place for regional and metro areas across the South West Interconnection System (SWIS).

Western Australia Energy Minister, Bill Johnston, announced the standard power supply allocation and said it will meet the evolving energy needs of Western Australians.

“We’ve listened to the community and sought advice on how we can best serve the power supply demands of Western Australians now and in the future,” Mr Johnston said.

“I’m pleased to announce that we now have one equitable power supply allocation across the network – that means regardless of whether you live regionally or in the metro area, everyone will have the same standard supply.

“Western Power has successfully undertaken a trial to test this and ensure network infrastructure is built for increased rural loads.

“The comprehensive assessment used Advanced Meter Infrastructure data to verify that a standardised connection service can be applied across the network safely and reliably.

“The new standard demonstrates Western Power’s commitment to transforming the network to facilitate the growth of renewables and electrification.”

Western Power will now offer a standard connection service capacity of 63 amps for small-use, single-phase (240V) connections regardless of location, ensuring that all homes and businesses across the entire network have the same allocation .

The increase to regional supply followed Western Power’s trial, which successfully established that a standardised supply allocation could be managed in a safe and reliable way for community benefit.

The 24-week trial involved seven regional local government areas ensuring that a representative sample of a diverse range of rural customers with different energy needs was included.

The trial enabled the installation of a 63 amp-rated main switch circuit breaker for all new single-phase connections to the network, or when altering an existing electrical installation.

Data from 140,000 single-phase meters across the network was analysed to understand load demand and network usage in metro and rural areas, which proved that existing electrical infrastructure could accommodate increased rural load requirements.

The installation of a main switch circuit breaker is critical in providing overload protection for a household if its capacity is exceeded. It prevents more widespread outages and damage to equipment, ensuring that the whole community has safe and equitable access to power supply.

The one standard supply will enable greater electrification and uptake of renewables and aligns with state/national compliance frameworks including Australian standards. 

Electrical contractors are required to assess household demand requirements when adding new circuits for property owners and apply for an upgraded supply allocation where necessary.

Homeowners are responsible for managing their electrical load and should seek electrical contractor advice when adding or replacing larger appliances or equipment.

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