Australian Daily Electrical Power Generation Data – Monday 9th July 2018

Posted on Tue 07/10/2018 by


By Anton Lang ~

This Post details the daily power consumption data for the AEMO coverage area in Australia. For the background information, refer to the Introductory Post at this link.

Each image is shown here at a smaller size to fit on the page alongside the data for that day. If you click on each image, it will open on a new page and at a larger size so you can better see the detail.

Note also the scale change for some of the images. That scale (the total power shown on the left hand axis) has been changed to show the graph at a larger size.

Monday 9th July 2018

Total Power Generation All Sources

Here, the black line is the total power generation from every source. This is also the same as for total power consumption, which is slightly lower after minor grid losses are taken into account.

The Blue line is all fossil fuelled power generation. The orange line is hydro power generation. The purple line is wind power generation, and the red line is for solar power generation.

Both of those (exact) figures for total power consumption for the daily minimum and the daily Peak are taken directly from the AEMO site, adding up the totals for each of the five States in this coverage area.

Note the slight difference between Total Consumed Power and Total Generated Power. That indicates some of the losses in the grid system.

Daily Minimum Power Consumption – 18140MW

Daily Peak Power Consumption – 29550MW

Daily Minimum Generated Power – 18500MW

Daily Maximum Generated Power – 30100MW

Average Total Power Generation – 24000MW

Total Power Generation In GWH – 576GWH

All Fossil Fuels Total – Coal Fired and Natural Gas Fired Power Generation

Here, the upper black line is the total from all fossil fuels, and this is the same as the blue line in the image directly above.

The black line just under that top black line is the Sub Total just for coal fired power. Note here how closely that coal fired line follows the shape of the upper Load Curve, and this indicates that coal fired power can be ramped up and down to follow actual power consumption.

Daily Minimum Coal Fired – 14900MW

Daily Peak Coal Fired – 19900MW

Average Coal Fired Generation – 18000MW

Total Generated Power – 432GWH

Average Percentage Of Total – 75%

Natural Gas Fired Power Generation

This image for Natural Gas Fired Power Generation shows the gap between the total for all Fossil Fuelled Sources of power generation and Coal Fired Power Generation in the image directly above.

Note here how closely the shape follows the total power generation Load Curve in the top image, indicating how these natural gas fired plants are used to smooth out the load curve to match actual power consumption.

Note also that while coal fired power provides the bulk of the power, these natural gas fired plants are used to add more power to the system during those time periods during the day when consumption rises for the morning peak, and the main evening Peak

Daily Minimum – 1000MW

Daily Peak – 4900MW

Average Natural Gas Fired Generation – 2360MW

Total Generated Power – 56.64GWH

Average Percentage Of Total – 9.83%

All Renewable Power Generation Versus Total Power Generation

This Image shows just the gap between total power generation from every source and the total power from renewable sources only. It is the same image as the first image at the top here, only with the fossil fuelled total (the blue line) removed from the graph, As in that top image, it shows Hydro Power, (orange line) wind power, (purple line) and solar power. (red line) What I have then done is added the black line just above those coloured lines and this indicates the Sub Total of power from those three renewable sources only. This is to highlight the gap between the total power generation and the total from renewable sources alone.

All Renewable Power Generation (Does not include rooftop solar generation)

This image is the same as for the one directly above for all renewable power, only with the total from all sources removed from the graph. As the scale of the left hand vertical axis has now changed, you can better see the detail of all renewable power. Again, the orange line is for hydro, the purple line is for wind, and the red line is for solar, and the black line is the Sub total for all renewable power. The other colour just showing indicates smaller plants, mostly using biofuels as their fuel source, tiny plants adding up to a very small total and for a short time duration.

Daily Minimum – 2600MW

Daily Peak – 5500MW

Average Renewable Generation – 3640MW

Total Generated Power – 87.36GWH

Average Percentage Of Total -15.17 %

Hydro Power Generation

This image shows all Hydro power generation. It is the same as the orange line in the top image for power generation from all sources.

Again, note here that the shape of this load curve follows the shape of the main load curve for all power generation, in that it has similar peaks in the morning and for the man evening Peak. The coloured lines at the bottom of this graph indicate the power generation from each of the hydro plants in this coverage area.

Daily Minimum – 1000MW

Daily Peak – 5100MW

Average Hydro Generation – 2570MW

Total Generated Power – 61.68GWH

Average Percentage Of Total – 10.71%

Wind Power Generation

This image shows the total power generated by every wind plant in this vast coverage area. It is the same as for the purple coloured line in the image at the top showing generation from all sources.

The total Nameplate for all these wind plants is just under 5225MW.

Note that the shape of this load curve does not follow the shape of the main load curve for total power generation. Wind power generates its power only when the wind is blowing, hence it does not follow actual power consumption levels.

Daily Minimum – 320MW

Daily Peak – 2080MW

Average Wind Generation – 970MW

Total Generated Power – 23.28GWH

Average Percentage Of Total – 4.04%

Solar Power Plant Generation

This image shows the total power generated from all the solar power plants in this coverage area. This is the same as for the red coloured line you can just see in that top image.

The total Nameplate for all these 16 solar plants is just lower than 1000MW.

Daily Minimum – Zero

Daily Peak – 400MW (cloudy conditions at some plants)

Average Solar Plant Generation for hours of generation – 240MW (7.30AM till 5.30PM)

Average Solar Plant Generation across the whole 24 hour day – 100MW

Total Generated Power – 2.4GWH

Average Percentage Of Total across the whole 24 hour day– 0.42%

Rooftop Solar Power Generation

As this source of power generation is classed as ‘behind the meter’, it is not included in the total power generation. Note here that the State of Queensland (QLD on the legend under the graph) is broken down into four separate areas as this is the largest State with the largest number of installations.

While the total Nameplate changes often, the latest information is that the total is now 7800MW, and that is a large total. However, that total equates to 1.8 Million homes with panels on their roof. That equates to an average sized installation of 4.3KW. Most of the power is consumed by the homes with the panels, and what is fed back to the grid, while seemingly still high is spread across that huge number of installations across the whole of this coverage area.

Daily Minimum – Zero

Daily Peak – 3650MW

Average For Hours of Generation – 2300MW (7.30AM till 5.30PM)

Average Rooftop Solar Generation across the whole 24 hour day – 960MW

Total Generated Power – 23.04GWH

Average Percentage Of Total across the whole 24 hour day – 4%


  1. Finding Averages – On each graph there are 9 time points. Add the total at each time point together, and divide by 9. For coal fired power, I do this on a State by State basis (for the 3 States with coal fired power) and then add the total for each State together.
  2. For both solar power averages, I have used the average for a (half) Sine Wave which is 0.637 of the Peak value.
  3. For total power in GWH, multiply the average daily power by 24, and then divide by 1000.
  4. The total percentages for coal fired power, natural gas fired power and all renewables adds up to 100%.
  5. The total percentages for Hydro, Wind, and Solar adds up to the total percentage for all Renewables.
  6. Total Generated Power is expressed here as GWH (GigaWattHours) and a GWH is a MWH (MegaWattHour) multiplied by 1000

Comments For This Day

This was a back to work week day, and power consumption, and power generation, rose across the board. Added to that, it was a cold Winter’s day as well, adding to the increase in power consumption.

At the minimum power consumption time, (the 4AM Base Load) power consumption rose by a relatively small 460MW, but at the peak power consumption time of 5.30/6PM, it was a pretty large 2760MW higher, and that’s a substantial 10.3% rise over yesterday. Overall power generation figures rose to reflect those changes.

Because of that, the average power generation from every source rose across the day to an hourly average of 24000MW, and that is a rise of 7.5% over yesterday, and that rise was 1700MW per hour.

ALL of that rise was covered by the increase in coal fired power generation to an hourly average of 18000MW, a rise of that same 1700MW, and coal fired power was delivering exactly 75% of every watt of power being consumed.

While overall power consumption rose, covered by coal fired power, the mix of power generation in the other four power generating sectors varied wildly.

That was because there was a huge fall in wind power as that large High pressure weather system moved across the area where most of the wind plants are located. That average for wind power fell to 970MW on average throughout the day, and if you look at the graph for wind power, you’ll see it was at its peak at Midnight, carrying on from the high of yesterday and the previous week. It fell steadily across the day to as low of only a little over 300MW, right at that peak power time, so wind power was only delivering only 1% of the power required at that peak time, and that also meant that the renewables of choice, wind power, solar power, and rooftop solar power were only delivering that 1% in total, as there was nothing at that time from either of the solar sources, as the Sun had set by then, a further indictment on renewable power, if it goes missing when it’s needed the most. That fall in wind power was 1870MW to that total of only 970MW, giving wind power an operational Capacity Factor for the day of 18.6%

That large fall in wind power was made up, as it always is, in the increases in natural gas fired power and hydro power.

The average for natural gas fired power rose the most, by 1160MW in all, most of that at that peak power time, when it was almost 2000MW higher than yesterday.

The average for hydro power was also up, by 700MW, also higher at the peak power time as well, but not by anywhere near the amount natural gas was up at that same time.

And, just in passing, the power delivered by solar power plants was up by 10MW, still only supplying 0.4% of what was actually required during the day.

I mentioned above that the average for coal fired power rose considerably across the day, and have a look at these two graphs, in these two images below, and as with all images on the page, they are small to fit the text area here, but if you click on each of the images they will open in a new window at the larger size so you can better see the detail.

These two images are for the coal fired power generation only, and just for the State of New South Wales. The image at the left is for this day, the Monday, and the image at right is for yesterday, Sunday 8th July 2018.

Note that yesterday, (the graph on the right) when overall power consumption was lower that the coal fired Units in the State were not required to work as hard, and so, they ‘took a bit of a breather’ on the day. Note the dip between the morning peak and the main evening peak, and it fell to 4700MW. The highest it was on that day was around 7500MW.

Then, on the following day, when power consumption ramped up considerably, this was most felt in that State of New South Wales, the most populous State, and the largest power consumer in Australia by State.

Power generation, to cover that increased consumption rose quickly in the morning from the Base at around 4AM to over 8000MW at 7AM, two hours earlier, and 1500MW higher than the day before. The slight drop after that morning peak was to a level 3000MW higher than at the same midday time period yesterday, and then it rose to above 8000MW again at the peak, 600MW to 700MW higher than at the peak yesterday.

Keep in mind here that two of those Units in New South Wales are currently off line, so the total available maximum power that can possibly be delivered is only 9020MW, so at that figure of almost 8200MW means those Units on line were delivering at 91% of their maximum, and some of those older Units cannot make their original design maximum power any more due to their age, so this is an amazing response from coal fired power, considering the most recently opened plant is the one at Mt. Piper, which came on line in 1993, so every one of those coal fired units is older than 25 years, incidentally, older than the expected best case life expectancy of any wind or solar plant, which might only last for 20 years or so.

This again is an astonishing example of not just the longevity of coal fired power, but more importantly, their reliability, and their ability to deliver large amounts of power from one source, and to do that day in day out, only off line when being maintained, power, that when added together CAN actually supply power from one centralised location to cover a whole State. There are only five coal fired power plants in New South Wales, and only 16 Units in all. The total Nameplate for coal fired power in New South Wales is 10180MW.

Compare that with wind power which has a total Nameplate for the WHOLE of Australia of 5222MW. There are 53 separate wind plants and between 2800 and 3000 individual units. (wind towers)

The total power delivered from EVERY one of those wind plants on this day, Monday, was delivered by just those coal fired Units in New South Wales alone in ….. seven and a half hours.

This sheets home two things.

  1. When you have large power consumption, it’s only coal fired power which can be relied upon to actually do that.
  2. The inability of wind power to supply power when it is needed the most.

That again is why coal fired power is so important.

Anton Lang uses the screen name of TonyfromOz, and he writes at this site, PA Pundits International on topics related to electrical power generation, from all sources, concentrating mainly on Renewable Power, and how the two most favoured methods of renewable power generation, Wind Power and all versions of Solar Power, fail comprehensively to deliver levels of power required to replace traditional power generation. His Bio is at this link.