What is energy security?
Energy security is about Australia’s ability to meet the energy needs of the Australian community and industry—both in the short and in the long term.
The energy sector is fundamental to Australia’s functioning and prosperity. It underpins every form of economic activity from powering our industries to turning on the lights in our homes. The secure supply of energy is essential to economic growth, jobs, and the prosperity and wellbeing of all Australians.
In an Australian context, energy security is defined as the adequate, reliable and competitive supply of energy where:
- adequacy is the provision of sufficient energy to support economic and social activity
- reliability is the provision of energy with minimal disruptions to supply
- competitiveness is the provision of energy at an affordable price which does not adversely impact on the competitiveness of the economy and which supports continued investment in the energy sector.
Factors affecting the supply of energy include issues such as short-term disruptions to supplies as a result of human and natural hazards, or longer-term impacts resulting from inadequate energy sector investment.
There is also a growing recognition of the importance of building resilience against hazards and balancing reliable energy supplies and environmental impacts.
How is RET involved?
The Department of Resources, Energy and Tourism (RET) is engaged in a number of initiatives to help ensure energy security in Australia.
In 2011 RET released the National Energy Security Assessment (NESA) which considers the key influences on the supply of energy in Australia in the short, medium and long terms covering the period 2011–2035.
The NESA provided a key input into the development of future energy policy including the Energy White Paper.
The department is also engaged in emergency response and critical infrastructure protection initiatives.
For more information about energy security in Australia visit the National Energy Security Assessment page or email AustralianEnergySecurity@ret.gov.au.