Emergency solar management ‘low load event day’
- Western Australians are yet to experience an emergency solar management (ESM) low load event day requiring remote management of solar PV systems under the ESM arrangements introduced by the WA Government.
- On 9 March 2023, Synergy with the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) and Western Power, conducted a routine end-to-end ESM compliance test affecting all solar PV systems subject to ESM requirements. This compliance test of all systems replicated an ESM low load event and will be conducted at the start of each peak low load 'season'.
- Peak low load ‘seasons’ generally occur in the Spring and Autumn shoulder periods. You can learn more about ESM, ESM low load event days and compliance testing for ESM in the FAQs below.
- Synergy will periodically test that rooftop solar systems subject to ESM requirements can be remotely managed to ensure that appropriate actions can be taken when required.
Emergency Solar Management
To maintain the stability of the electricity system and support the continued installation of rooftop solar, the WA State Government has introduced emergency solar management (ESM) – the capability to remotely turn off (and on again) new and upgraded rooftop solar systems.
From 14 February 2022, all new and upgraded rooftop solar systems with an inverter capacity of 5kW or less, and participating in the Distributed Energy Buyback Scheme (DEBS), must have the capability to be remotely turned off in an ESM low load event.
On mild, sunny days (usually weekends), the electricity generated from rooftop solar systems in the network is generally high while demand for electricity is low – affecting the stability of the electricity system as supply and demand are unbalanced. This can cause an 'ESM low load event ', requiring the remote management of rooftop solar systems to balance supply and demand in the electricity system.
ESM low load events are expected to be infrequent and required only for short time periods to prevent the interruption or loss of electricity supply during these times. Remote management is only intended to be used when all other available options to protect the electricity system have been exhausted.
ESM does not interrupt electricity supply from the network – only rooftop solar generation is turned off. You will continue to receive electricity from the network if your rooftop solar system is remotely managed on an ESM low load event.
The introduction of ESM and the delivery of the WA State Government’s Distributed Energy Resources Roadmap, a plan to integrate solar PV, batteries, electric vehicles, and other energy storage and generation devices into the electricity system, are part of WA's Energy Transformation Strategy.
ESM represents a stepping-stone, to assist in maintaining security and reliability in the electricity system, that could enable renewable generation to continue to be installed and connected to the network.
For more information on ESM and more, please see FAQs below or:
Synergy is committed to assisting solar retailers and installers understand ESM requirements.
General ESM FAQs
Here you will find general information on Emergency Solar Management.Find out more
ESM Low Load Event and Testing FAQs
Find out more about ESM Low Load Events and testing,Find out more
ESM and the Solar Application process FAQs
Find out more about how ESM works within the Solar Application process,Find out more
Understanding ESM Event data in My Account FAQs
Understand what is displayed in the MyAccount portal.Find out more