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Transmission Load Connections Process

When a load project obtains a firm commitment to connection and available network capacity, TasNetworks is required to follow the connections process in the National Electricity Rules (Rules). A high level process flow diagram of the connections process is set out in the AEMO connections process diagram.

The Rules contain a number of different definitions of “committed project” for various different, unique purposes mainly related to generation projects. The Rules do not explicitly define when a load project becomes “committed” for the purposes of:

(a) obtaining a firm commitment to connection and available network capacity; or
(b) being required to be considered as part of system studies for other projects moving forward (including in flight projects).

Implicitly the natural point at which this occurs is when the connection contracting arrangements are entered into with the Network Service Provider, along with achieving a number of key milestones required to reach the point of entering the contracting arrangements.

To provide clarity to connecting parties, TasNetworks has prepared the below “committed project” criteria and is making these publicly available for comment. The criteria will be incorporated into the Load Connections Document moving forward. The criteria reflect the internal approach that TasNetworks currently takes to making a connection commitment to a connecting party. TasNetworks recognises that this is the first time that the criteria have been explicitly set out and published and will consider any feedback provided. The draft criteria are set out below; comments should be provided to loadconnections@tasnetworks.com.au by 27 August 2021.

TasNetworks will consider any comments provided, and determine whether any changes to the criteria will be made in its absolute discretion. Individual responses to comments provided may not be provided.

Criteria* Proposed TNW Description
Site Proponent has firm rights to the land (purchased/settled/acquired/legal right to acquire) on which the project will be constructed
Connection Application Submission of a complete Connection Application to TasNetworks
Suppliers Selection of suppliers of major plant or equipment components, nomination of primary plant, and provision of associated models
Planning and approvals Proponent has obtained all required planning and construction consents. This does not include consents and approvals required after construction has commenced. Progression of performance standards for the facility (which ultimately require approval by TasNetworks and AEMO) to a stage where there are no material issues preventing connection, as determined by TasNetworks acting reasonably.
Commitment to proceed Proponent and TasNetworks Board approvals for connection obtained. Execution of an Asset Development Agreement and Customer Connection Agreement with TasNetworks, and all proponent-controlled conditions precedent of the Asset Development Agreement satisfied within nominated timeframe (including financial close).
Finance** Financial close has been achieved, with written confirmation provided on behalf of proponent and any financiers
* This criteria may be impacted by changes to the National Electricity Rules.
** It is anticipated that financial close can be achieved with signed connection contracts with TasNetworks, with committed project then being achieved immediately following once the proponent’s conditions precedent are satisfied.