Northern Territory Power Supply

The Northern Territory currently relies on conventional offshore and onshore gas as well as diesel as its primary source of energy input for electricity generation. The current energy generation mix is approximately 60 per cent natural gas, 30 per cent imported diesel and a limited amount of renewable energy.

The Northern Territory is unique in that it is not connected to the National Electricity Market, which is responsible for servicing the five interconnected eastern Australian jurisdictions. This connected grid provides these connected jurisdictions with a ‘back up’ or secondary source of power in the event that there is a system failure in their own jurisdiction. The Northern Territory doesn’t have access to a connection to other jurisdictions, which means that we need to be innovative as well as responsible to ensure we always have a sufficient supply of energy to use as a back-up if there is a system failure.

The Northern Territory also has three comparatively small and geographically separate electricity networks (grids).

  • Darwin-Katherine
  • Tennant Creek
  • Alice Springs

In addition to these three separate and standalone grids, there are numerous smaller, isolated networks that support remote towns and communities throughout the Northern Territory (72 major communities, 66 grid connected outstations).

A key part of the Expert Panel’s deliberations is how the Northern Territory can safely, reliably and securely integrate renewable energy into these electricity grids.