Forecasting Electricity Demand from New Iron Ore Mines in Western Australia

Forecasting Electricity Demand from New Iron Ore Mines in Western Australia

Western Power owns the largest electricity network in Western Australia. The Mid West region of Western Australia has substantial magnetite iron ore resources. Western Power’s role is to extend the electricity grid such that there is sufficient capacity to accommodate the increased demand for electricity from several prospective iron ore mines.

An accurate forecast was required to estimate the size of new demand from greenfield iron ore mines and assist in demonstrating the need for a new 330 kV transmission line. GoldSim was used to forecast electricity demand from new iron ore mines in the region. The GoldSim model's visual orientation made it easy for auditors to vet the model. More importantly, GoldSim's powerful probabilistic simulation capabilities allowed the modelling to explicitly recognise uncertainty.

Western Power needed to demonstrate the robustness of the new demand to its funders. Given that risk assessment invariably requires a series of judgements to be made, the incremental revenue model developed in GoldSim allowed financial analysts to work through those judgements in a systematic manner. Moreover, it allowed analysts to focus on the assumptions underlying model outcomes. Often, disagreements between negotiating parties revolve around differences in judgements about key assumptions. The GoldSim model allowed an evaluation of which assumptions were the most critical, in turn facilitating a consensus view.

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Using GoldSim to Forecast Electricity Demand from Iron Ore Mines