Reflections on 2022 via WattClarity

At Global-Roam Pty Ltd, we appreciate the opportunity to serve an ever-growing number of people through the range of software-based services we’ve been supplying since as early as January 2000 (when we started operations).

Our WattClarity® industry commentary site is one of those services – with this one being freely accessible, and increasingly valued by a broad range of subscribers and other readers.

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We thought it would be worthwhile to invest a little time to look back on the 2022 year in the NEM, as we saw things via WattClarity…


The 2022 year, via WattClarity articles

As if 2020 and 2021 hadn’t been eventful enough; an energy crisis began to emerge mid-way through 2022 culminating in an unprecedented 12-day suspension of  the NEM.

But that was not the only important development that occurred through calendar 2022 – here’s a quick chronological review, with links to a range of articles that I found interesting this year:


Month Market Activity

January 2022

On January 10th, the AER requested further details from the AEMO on Coal Closure Assumptions in the draft 2022 ISP.

February 2022

On February 1st and 2nd, QLD experienced significant price spikes in the midst of heatwave conditions. The RERT is dispatched in the region on both days.

On February 18th, the SA Market is suspended for almost two hours after ElectraNet lost SCADA visibility.

March 2022

On March 1st, the TAS market is suspended for roughly six and a half hours after TasNetworks lost SCADA visibility.

In late February and early March, widespread flooding through QLD and NSW caused numerous outages, mainly contained to the distribution network.

On March 8th, QLD hit an all-time record high for market demand in the region.

On March 28th, we released the Generator Statistical Digest 2021 summing up generator performance for the previous calendar year.

On March 29th, the AEMO published the 2022 Gas Statement of Opportunities (GSOO).

April 2022

On April 1st, Liddell Unit 3 ceased operations, the first of the four Liddell units to do so (the other three units are scheduled to retire at the end of March 2023).

Throughout April, spot prices and forward prices surged. QLD, NSW, VIC and SA all smashed the record for the highest April average spot price.

May 2022

Throughout April and May, La Nina-related rain events interrupted operations at some generation sites. Notably, the Millmerran Power Plant began transporting coal (nearly 6 hours) by truck as a result.

On May 17th, Australian Domestic Weekly Gas Prices exceeded $30/GJ for the first time.

On May 30th, Victorian Wholesale Gas Prices hit the Cumulative Price Threshold.

On May 31st, a new record for NEM-wide wind production is hit.

June 2022

June was our busiest month, with many articles published as the a series of significant events unfolded in the NEM:

On June 2nd, the AEMO published a “Notification of Potential Gas Supply Shortfall Event” notice.

On June 7th, in a notice to the market, the AEMO flagged “‘recent challenges with fuel availability with potential ongoing implications for reliability in the NEM this winter”

On June 12th, the Administrative Pricing came into effect in the QLD region after the Cumulative Price Threshold (CPT) is reached. The CPT is later hit in NSW, VIC and SA.

On June 14th, the AER circulated a letter reminding generators of compliance obligations.

On June 15th, the AEMO declared a suspension of the market.

On June 24th, after roughly nine days, the market suspension is lifted.

On June 30th, the AEMO released the final version of the 2022 Integrated System Plan.

July 2022

On July 5th, the RERT was dispatched in QLD.

On July 6th, Alinta Energy submitted a rule change to temporarily raise the Administered Price Cap to $600/MWh.

On July 29th, the AEMO’s Quarterly Energy Dynamics report highlights no less than eight factors that contributed to extreme price outcomes in 2022’s Q2.

August 2022

On August 7th, the record for NEM-wide wind production is broken for the second time in the year.

On August 31st, the AEMO released the 2022 ESOO.

September 2022

On September 11th, QLD breaks its record for all-time lowest market demand, for the third time in five weeks. Notably, this occurred just six months after it broke the record for all-time highest market demand.

On September 29th, the Energy Security Board’s ‘Health of the NEM’ and the AER’s ‘State of the Market” reports are released just one day after the QLD Government publishes several major policy announcements in their ‘Energy and Jobs Plan’.

October 2022

On October 14th, 530MW of load was lost in Tasmania after a landslide causes the trip of the Waddamana to Palmerston line.

On October 29th, NSW recorded an all-time low for market demand.

November 2022

On November 10th, it was announced that an initial takeover bid was made on Origin Energy, one of the country’s largest retailers.

On November 12th, storms cause a line fault near Tailem Bend, SA eventually leading to the region being islanded for a period of seven days.

On November 19th, SA’s islanding event ends as the Heywood interconnector is returned to service.

December 2022

On December 1st, the Administered Price Cap is officially increased from $300/MWh to $600/MWh as an initially temporary measure.

On December 9th, the Federal Government received endorsement from state/territory counterparts to establish a ‘Capacity Investment Scheme’.

On December 15th, the AER released the “June 2022 Market Events Report”.

On December 18th, market demand hits an all-time low in VIC.



As highlighted in the table above, the way we saw things, there were a number of different ‘Headline Events’ that we used to aggregate a series of articles through the year:


Headline Event #1)  2022 Energy Crisis

From the start of 2022, but particularly escalating through Q2 2022 an energy crisis began to emerge in Australia – although other parts of the world have experienced their own crises.

We published over 55 articles aggregated under the headline of ‘2022 Energy Crisis’, as we strove to understand what what’s been a very complex (and still evolving) situation.

Headline Event #2)  Summer Heatwave

In Late January/Early February, extreme heatwave conditions caused price spikes and supply-demand tightness as market and network operators faced significant challenges to ‘keep the lights on’.

We aggregated 33 articles under this category.

Headline Event #3)  Flooding

Throughout February, March, and April, the eastern coast of Australia experienced one of the nation’s worst recorded flood disasters. Whilst the severity and consequences of the natural disaster were far-reaching in the community, significant risks also faced the physical electricity network.

We only attributed a single article under this category, but that should not be mistaken as signifying it was not a significant event through the year.

Headline Event #4)  The APC and Market Suspension in June 2022

As part of the broader Energy Crisis, the period of 12th June to 22nd June saw all four mainland regions reach the Administered Price Cap and operate under Administered Pricing.  There was also the overlapping period of Market Suspension (Wed 15th June to Fri 24th June).

We aggregated 70 articles under this category.

Headline Event #5)  TAS nearly split in two (14 Oct to 2 Dec)

On 14th October 2022 a landslide (following a major rainfall and flooding event) toppled a major transmission tower in northern Tasmania and almost split the Tasmanian region into two.

We aggregated 8 articles under this category.

Headline Event #6)  SA islanding event (12 Nov to 19 Nov)

For the second time in three years, a transmission failure caused part of the Heywood interconnector to trip, islanding SA from the rest of the NEM. After the initial separation, we were quick cover the event on WattClarity, with many interested onlookers trying to understand the situation, and it’s impact on the broader market.

We aggregated 27 articles under this category, and might add more later, if we have time to further explore these questions.


Authors who contributed to WattClarity

Articles on the WattClarity site are written by a range of internal and external authors:

External Authors

Whilst many of the articles are written by our Internal Authors, we would like to start by thanking the range of Guest Authors who have invested the time to contribute articles through 2022, such as the following people:


Guest Author Contributions in 2022

Allan O’Neil

Allan O’Neil is an independent analyst who we’ve worked with for a number of years.

Through 2022 Allan contributed 4 articles, which you can find linked here.

Ben Domensino


Ben Domensino is a Communications Meteorologist at Weatherzone.

Through 2022 Allan contributed 2 articles, which you can find linked here.

Carl Daley


Carl Daley is a co-founder of SavvyPlus and Empower Analytics with over 25 years of experience in energy market analytics.

Through 2022 Carl contributed 3 articles, which you can find linked here.

Josh Stabler

Joshua Stabler is the Managing Director at Energy Edge. He has extensive experience in supply-side market operations for the electricity and gas sectors.

Through 2022 Josh contributed 2 articles, which you can find linked here.

In addition to the above, we would also like to thank the other authors who contributed guest posts in 2022 – Jonathon Dyson, David Leitch, Tristan Edis, Geoff Bongers, Lachlan McLeod, James Allan, Tom Geiser, Greg Thorpe, Kate Summers, Ant Sharwood, James Martin and Richard Bean.


If you know of others who you think would make excellent contributors to WattClarity, please do let us know.


Internal Authors

Through 2022, a number of our staff here at Global-Roam have made contributions to the site – with the following the ones attributed as authors (but others helping behind the scenes, as well).


Staff About

Paul McArdle

Paul is the CEO and founder of Global-Roam, and the principal author of WattClarity.

Through 2022, Paul contributed 312 articles, which you can find all of them linked here.

Linton Corbet

Linton joined Global-Roam as a software engineer and market analyst in August 2020. Prior to joining us, he worked with the AEMO for 7 years, and before that, as an air quality scientist.

Through 2022 Linton contributed 8 articles, which you can find linked here.

Dan Lee

As the author of this update for 2022, I thought it would be worth noting that:

  • I’ve been involved with Global-Roam since June 2013.
  • After spending time away overseas on a several occasions, I rejoined the team permanently in late 2019.
  • From the start of 2022 I have been enrolled in the Master of Sustainable Energy program at the University of Queensland.

Through 2022, I contributed 22 articles, which you can find linked here.

Marcelle Gannon

Marcelle is a software engineer and market analyst who was an integral part of our team between 2020 and mid-2022.

Marcelle came to us after gaining valuable experience within operational roles within the NEM, and departed in 2022 to further her experience in operational roles.

Through 2022 Marcelle contributed 5 articles, which you can find linked here.

We’ve all appreciated the opportunity to share some insights with you!


Audience for WattClarity


Readership, and Subscribers

We’ve appreciated assisting the many thousands* of people who’ve benefited from the WattClarity service through 2022.   Readers for Wattclarity arrive at the site through a number of different mechanisms – including links on social media, references in other news sources, direct referrals, through RSS feed and so on.

* Because we’re not seeking to turn WattClarity into a paid service, or support it with advertising, we don’t invest time in understanding exactly how large the readership is.  We know it helps many thousands of people – but it might be an order of magnitude larger than that.

We’d like to especially thank the hundreds of new people who’ve subscribed directly to through 2022.
(a) The year saw us increase the number of direct subscribers by almost 25% on the total number of direct subscribers from the start of the year.
(b) If you’d also like to subscribe, you can do this at the top-right of that page.

Some of the external references

Throughout the year, we have seen many references to WattClarity from other sources, with the following being just a sample:

Kind words some of our readers have shared with us

We were also appreciative of the many compliments we received for our coverage via Twitter, LinkedIn and email. The posts below from Tim, Oscar and Steve are just a few examples of the generous compliments we received.




As we count down the last few days in calendar 2022, we wish that calendar 2023 will be smoother sailing ahead … but the evidence (such as explored in GenInsights21 (published 12 months ago) and now being updated each quarter in GenInsights Quarterly Updates) suggests that this is probably not going to be the case, unfortunately.

We’ll look forward to sharing insights freely with our readers on into 2023 … so don’t forget to subscribe there.