In May 2020 the Prime Minister announced the cessation of the Council of Australian Governments (COAG), including the former COAG Energy Council. The COAG Energy Council has been replaced by the Energy National Cabinet Reform Committee (ENCRC) and the Energy Ministers’ Meeting (EMM). These are Ministerial forums for the Commonwealth, states and territories and New Zealand to work together on priority issues of national significance and key reforms in the energy sector.
ENCRC and EMM are chaired by the Honourable Minister for Energy and Emissions Reduction, Angus Taylor.
Energy Ministers work closely with Energy Consumers Australia, and have oversight of the following energy market institutions responsible for the operation of national energy markets:
- The Energy Security Board (ESB)—whole of system oversight through transition
- the Australian Energy Market Commission (AEMC)—the rule maker and market development adviser
- the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO)—the system operator
- the Australian Energy Regulator (AER)—the economic regulator and rule enforcer
As a sub-committee of the National Cabinet, ENCRC have been tasked with the following key priorities to deliver in 2021:
- immediate measures to ensure reliability and security of the electricity grid ahead of the 2020-21 summer
- the redesign of the National Electricity Market to take effect after 2025
- a package reforms to unlock new gas supply, improve competition in the market and better regulate pipelines
These reforms will ensure an affordable and reliable energy system that will support job creation and economic growth to benefit consumers.
Energy Ministers meet as needed—by telepresence or face to face. The agenda for each meeting reflects the key priorities. Officials also progress issues and consult with stakeholders out of session.