The Commerce Commission has today published a report assessing how local electricity lines companies are identifying and managing risks to their networks.
The report, prepared by Partna Consulting Group, is part of a programme of work the Commission has initiated to assess lines companies’ asset management practices in order to identify and address potential risk areas, disseminate good practice and improve the quality of their disclosures.
Partna was engaged to review the published asset management plans of all 29 local lines companies to assess their risk management practices, contingency and major events planning and their investment associated with network resilience.
Partna found that while the majority of lines companies say they have risk management policies in place, the level of detail they disclose to the public varies significantly between companies. The report recommends that lines companies provide more detail on their contingency planning to help their stakeholders better understand what to expect should a significant event, such as an earthquake, strike their electricity network.
A copy of the report and accompanying letter to the sector can be found on the Commission’s website.
The Commission has separately engaged AECOM to undertaking a review of risk management practices of the regulated gas pipeline businesses. That report is likely to be published later this year.
The Commission is seeking to encourage improvement in lines companies asset management practices and understanding of them by stakeholders. Poor management can impose significant costs on consumers through inefficient delivery of services and poor quality outcomes such as increased outages and interruptions. Responsibility and accountability for sound asset management practices and decisions rests with the lines companies. The Commission looks to disseminate good practice to encourage improvement across the sector, noting we accept that some lines companies practices may not necessarily be currently aligned with best practice.
The review released today is purely based on the information publicly disclosed within each lines company’s asset management plan.