AGL Energy Limited
Company typePublic
S&P/ASX 50 Component
HeadquartersSydney, New South Wales, Australia
Key people
Damien Nicks (CEO)[1]
RevenueDecrease A$1,218 million (2022)[2]
Increase A$860 million (2022)[2]

AGL Energy Ltd (ASXAGL) is an Australian listed public company involved in both the generation and retailing of electricity and gas for residential and commercial use.[3] AGL is Australia's largest electricity generator, and the nation's largest carbon emitter.[4] In 2022, 83% of its energy came from burning coal.[5] It produces more emissions as a single company than the nations of New Zealand, Portugal or Sweden, according to its largest shareholder, Mike Cannon-Brookes, who named it "one of the most toxic companies on the planet".[6]

AGL also generates a small percentage of energy from renewable sources.[7] It is, however, targeting 12 gigawatts of new renewable energy by 2035.[8] It closed Liddell Power Station in 2023, but aims to close Bayswater Power Station in 2033, and Loy Yang A Power Station in 2035.[9]

It is one of the "big three" retailers in the National Electricity Market.[10]


Main article: Australian Gas Light Company

The Australian Gas Light Company was formed in Sydney in 1837, and supplied town gas for the first public lighting of a street lamp in Sydney in 1841.[11] AGL was the second company to list on the Sydney Stock Exchange.[12] The company gradually diversified into electricity and into a number of different locations.

ActewAGL, a joint venture between the Australian Gas Light Company and Icon Water, a government-owned enterprise of the ACT Government, was formed in October 2000 as Australia's first utility joint venture.[13] Twenty-five per cent owned by AGL Energy, ActewAGL provides electricity, natural gas, and telecommunication services to business and residential customers in the Australian Capital Territory and south-east New South Wales.[14]

In 2000, AGL purchased emerging telecommunications provider Dingo Blue from C&W Optus for $22m.[15] AGL closed Dingo Blue down in 2003 [16]

AGL had New Zealand assets including a gas distribution system in the Hutt Valley and Porirua area, owned through its 71% owned subsidiary Natural Gas Corporation. This network was sold to Vector in 2004 for NZ$814 million.[17] The company bought Transalta NZ's electricity retail business for NZ$824 million in 2001.[18] Subsequently, selling the electricity retail asset for a loss.[19]

On 6 October 2006, the Australian Gas Light Company and Alinta merged and restructured to create two new listed companies, a restructured Alinta Ltd and AGL Energy Ltd.[20]

In Victoria, in June 2012, AGL Energy acquired Loy Yang A Power Station and the Loy Yang coal mine.[21] Loy Yang A has four generating units with a combined capacity of 2,200 MW (3,000,000 hp).[21]

In New South Wales, in September 2014 AGL Energy acquired Macquarie Generation from the New South Wales Government for $1.5 billion. Macquarie Generation's assets included the 2,640 MW Bayswater Power Station, the 2,000 MW Liddell Power Station, the 50 MW Hunter Valley Gas Turbines and the Liddell Solar Thermal Project.[22] From the two thermal coal power stations and two oil-fired gas turbines, Macquarie Generation supplies approximately 12% of the National Electricity Market and 30% of the New South Wales electricity market.[22] In early stages, Macquarie has commenced development of solar thermal power as a renewable source of energy.

AGL announced in April 2015 and reaffirmed in September 2017 that it intends to close the Liddell Power Station in 2022.[23] The closure of this and other coal-burning power stations in Australia led to Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, to seek advice from the Australian Energy Market Operator on extending the life of a number of them,[24] to head off future power shortages.[25] Turnbull said the government had been advised that if the Liddell plant were to close in 2022, there would be a 1,000 MW gap in base load, dispatchable power generation.[24]

In 2018, AGL was among 17 energy businesses that supported the launch of the Energy Charter, a global initiative aimed at bringing together all parts of the power supply chain to give customers more affordable and reliable energy.[26][27]

In 2019, AGL entered the telecommunications industry with the purchase of Southern Phone, a regional telecommunications company.[28]

In June 2021, AGL announced its intention to split into a bulk power generator and a carbon-neutral energy retailer. AGL Energy was to be rebranded as Accel Energy and hold the company's coal-fired power plants and wind farm contracts, while the electricity and gas retail assets were to be spun off into a separately listed company, AGL Australia.[29] In May 2022, the proposed split was abandoned with the chairman, two board members and CEO resigning, the company citing the proposal was unlikely to gain the required 75% shareholder approval.[30]

Carbon emissions output

Aerial view of AGL Macquarie Bayswater (upper left) and Liddell (center) power stations (the latter was closed in 2023), with coal mining operations visible in the background

AGL currently owns three coal-burning power stations which produce a majority of its power generation.[31]

The Australian Government Clean Energy Regulator publishes an annual list of the ten largest emitters of greenhouse gases. In the 2019-20 financial year, AGL came first place on the list, with reported emissions of 42.4 million tonnes,[3] which is equivalent to nine million cars on the road.

AGL is responsible for more than double the carbon emissions of Australia's second-biggest electricity generator, and more than BHP, Rio Tinto, Glencore, and Qantas combined. AGL's coal-burning power stations are responsible for eight per cent of Australia's total national emissions.

Name Identifying details Total
Scope 1 emissions
AGL ENERGY LIMITED 74 115 061 375 42,227,180 tonnes
ENERGYAUSTRALIA HOLDINGS LIMITED 57 101 876 135 17,935,957 tonnes
STANWELL CORPORATION LIMITED 37 078 848 674 17,126,943 tonnes
ORIGIN ENERGY LIMITED 30 000 051 696 15,997,984 tonnes
C S ENERGY LIMITED 54 078 848 745 13,199,922 tonnes
PIONEER SAIL HOLDINGS PTY LIMITED 45 617 844 569 11,710,974 tonnes
OZGEN HOLDINGS AUSTRALIA PTY LTD 34 128 655 096 10,818,788 tonnes
CHEVRON AUSTRALIA HOLDINGS PTY LTD 60 098 079 344 10,206,589 tonnes
WOODSIDE PETROLEUM LTD 55 004 898 962 9,194,216 tonnes
INPEX HOLDINGS AUSTRALIA PTY LTD 61 150 217 315 7,623,682 tonnes

Mergers and acquisitions

This is a listing of AGL's corporate acquisitions and disposals.

Date Company Business Valuation
millions AUD
Acquisition / Sale
September 1995 Solaris 50%[32] Electricity distribution and retail $950 million (total value of Solaris) Acquisition
January 1998 Solaris 50%[33] Electricity distribution and retail $219 million Acquisition
January 2000 ETSA[34] Electricity retail $219 million Acquisition
July 2000 Australian Pipeline Trust[35] Pipeline assets - Sale
December 2000 Dingo Blue[15] Telecom $22 million Acquisition
July 2002 Pulse[36] Electricity and gas retail $880 million Acquisition
November 2005 Southern Hydro renewable generation[37] 737MW renewable generation across Victoria, NSW and South Australia. $1400 million Acquisition
February 2006 Demerger splitting retail and distribution[38] Splitting company into retail and distribution - -
February 2007 Power Direct Retail[39] Electricity retail $1200 million Acquisition
August 2020 Click Energy[40] Electricity retail $115 million Acquisition

Operations and significant assets

AGL has a diverse power generation portfolio—including base, peaking and intermediate generation plants—spread across traditional thermal generation as well as renewable sources including hydro and wind.[41] The following tables listing significant assets are based on AGL's 2016 Annual Report.[42]

Coal and gas fired power stations

Source State Maximum capacity Ref
Bayswater Power Station NSW 2,640 megawatts (3,540,000 hp)
Liddell Power Station
(Closed April 2023)
NSW 2,000 megawatts (2,700,000 hp)
Loy Yang A Power Station Vic 2,225 megawatts (2,984,000 hp)
Torrens Island Power Station SA 1,280 megawatts (1,720,000 hp)
Barker Inlet Power Station SA 210 megawatts (280,000 hp)
Somerton Power Station (Gas turbines) Vic 160 megawatts (210,000 hp)
Townsville Power Station
50% interest – not operated by AGL
Qld 121 megawatts (162,000 hp)
(50% of 242 MW)

Renewable energy

Source State Maximum capacity Ref
Dartmouth Hydroelectric Power Station Vic 180 megawatts (240,000 hp)
Eildon Hydroelectric Power Station Vic 120 megawatts (160,000 hp) [43]
Kiewa Hydroelectric Scheme Vic 391 megawatts (524,000 hp)
Burrendong Hydroelectric Power Station NSW 19 megawatts (25,000 hp) [44]
Coopers Gap Wind Farm

(20% Ownership)
in development

Qld 453 megawatts (607,000 hp) [45]
Hallet Wind Farms (1,2,4 & 5) SA 350 megawatts (470,000 hp)
Macarthur Wind Farm
(50%, sold 2015)
Vic 420 megawatts (560,000 hp)
Oaklands Hill Wind Farm Vic 63 megawatts (84,000 hp)
Silverton Wind Farm

(20% Ownership)

NSW 200 megawatts (270,000 hp) [46]
Wattle Point Wind Farm SA 91 megawatts (122,000 hp) [47]
Broken Hill Solar Plant

(20% Ownership)

NSW 53 megawatts (71,000 hp)
Nyngan Solar Plant

(20% Ownership)

NSW 102 megawatts (137,000 hp)

AGL holds 20% of the Powering Australian Renewables Fund, which is Australia's largest privately owned renewable energy company.[48]


Source State Maximum capacity Ref
Newcastle Gas Storage NSW 1.5 petajoules (0.42×10^9 kWh)
Silver Springs Gas Storage Qld 35 petajoules (9.7×109 kWh)

Upstream gas projects

In 2015 the New South Wales Environment Protection Authority ordered the suspension of AGL's Gloucester operations after finding toxic chemicals had been introduced into Hunter Water's systems.[49] The EPA subsequently found no "evidence of harm to the environment or pollution of waters"[50] and AGL was allowed to continue its Gloucester operations.[51]

In February 2016, AGL announced that exploration and production of natural gas assets would no longer be a core business for the company. This followed years of campaigning, including protests at shareholder meetings and a non-violent blockade of exploration sites, by anti-CSG community group Groundswell Gloucester.[52] This announcement included clarification that AGL would not proceed with the Gloucester gas project and that it would cease production at the Camden Gas Project in South West Sydney in 2023, twelve years earlier than previously proposed.[53]

AGL has implemented a decommissioning and rehabilitation program for its well sites and other infrastructure in the Gloucester region.[54] In November 2016, AGL commenced the progressive decommissioning and rehabilitation of wells at the Camden site.[55]

Power generation projects in development

Coopers Gap Wind Farm

In August 2017, it was announced that the Coopers Gap Wind Farm would proceed to construction, with AGL securing funding from the Powering Australian Renewables Fund.[45] When completed the 453 MW Coopers Gap Wind Farm will be the largest in Australia.[56] The final wind turbine at the Coopers Gap Wind Farm was completed in April 2020.

Silverton Wind Farm

In May 2017, it was announced that construction had commenced on the 200 MW Silverton Wind Farm in north western New South Wales.[46]

Barker Inlet Power Station

In June 2017, AGL announced the development of a new $295 million gas-fired generator in South Australia. The Barker Inlet Power Station, will replace two of the four Torrens Island A turbines which are expected to be decommissioned in late 2020. The island's B turbines will continue to operate as usual.[57] The Barker Inlet Power Station was officially completed and handed over to AGL in early 2020.

Crib Point Gas Import Jetty

In August 2017, Crib Point Import Jetty was announced as the preferred location for a new terminal importing gas from other markets.[58] The project is expected to cost $250 million, with construction expected to commence in 2021.[59]

In 2021, the Andrews State Government halted the project, despite gas shortages being forecasted, forcing AGL to announce that it would no longer proceed with the project.

Kanmantoo pumped hydro

In April 2019, AGL announced that it had acquired the right to develop a pumped hydroelectric energy storage project in the mined-out main pit of the Kanmantoo mine on the eastern side of the Adelaide Hills in South Australia.[60] The project is expected to be capable of storing and generating 250MW of electricity from 2024.[61] In early 2020, AGL announced that it would not be proceeding with the Kanmantoo Pumped Hydro project.

Powering Australian Renewables

In February 2016, AGL announced the creation of the Powering Australian Renewables Fund.[62] The Powering Australian Renewables Fund or PARF (now PowAR), owns and develops more than 1,000MW of large-scale renewable energy projects to support Australia's renewable energy capacity and transition to a low-carbon economy. Once fully invested, PARF expects to own approximately 10% of Australia's renewable energy capacity.[63]

In June 2016, Queensland Investment Corporation and the Future Fund joined AGL as investors in Powering Australian Renewables.[64]

See also


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  2. ^ a b "FY22 Results Announcement" (PDF).
  3. ^ a b "Australia's 10 highest greenhouse gas emitters 2019-20". Retrieved 15 November 2021.
  4. ^ "Australia's 10 highest greenhouse gas emitters 2020-21". Clean Energy Regulator. 28 February 2022. Retrieved 28 July 2022.
  5. ^ "Green electricity guide".
  6. ^ "AGL 'one of the planet's most toxic companies': Cannon-Brookes". Australian Financial Review. 11 August 2023. Retrieved 3 September 2023.
  7. ^ Wilkinson, Marian (30 August 2007). "Energy giant backs 20% renewables". Sydney Morning Herald. Archived from the original on 3 March 2016.
  8. ^ Kruger, Colin (22 October 2023). "Australia's green future at stake as Origin takeover hangs in balance". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 23 October 2023.
  9. ^ "Climate Transition Action Plan" (PDF).
  10. ^ "State of the Energy Market 2022" (PDF).
  11. ^ "History of Natural Gas in Australia". Energysafe Victoria. Victorian Government. Archived from the original on 16 February 2011. Retrieved 28 February 2011.
  12. ^ "ASX history". ASX. March 2014.
  13. ^ Wright, B. (2003). Canberra & the Capital Region, a new focus. NSW: Focus Publishing.
  14. ^ Doherty, Megan (20 July 2012). "Actew's 'water' bill hits $2.5m". The Canberra Times. Archived from the original on 22 August 2012. Retrieved 18 April 2013.
  15. ^ a b Clegg, Brett (19 December 2000). "AGL buys Dingo Blue for $22m". Australian Financial Review.
  16. ^ Staff Writers (16 September 2003). "AGL closes Dingo Blue mobile business, settles Optus dispute". ARN. IDG Communications.
  17. ^ "AGL sells NZ gas arm for $814m". The Age. 12 October 2004.
  18. ^ "AGL powers to top of NZ energy tree". NZ Herald. 30 June 2000. Retrieved 18 November 2021.
  19. ^ "AGL profit goes right off the boil". The Age. 8 March 2002. Retrieved 18 November 2021.
  20. ^ "AGL – Alinta Transaction: Class Ruling" (PDF) (PDF). AGL Energy. 27 December 2006. Archived from the original (PDF) on 13 March 2014.[self-published source]
  21. ^ a b "Loy Yang Power Station | About AGL". Retrieved 17 November 2021.
  22. ^ a b "AGL Macquarie | About AGL". Retrieved 17 November 2021.
  23. ^ "AGL Energy statement on Liddell Power Station". AGL Energy. 6 September 2017. Retrieved 6 September 2017.
  24. ^ a b Osborne, Paul (6 September 2017). "Turnbull throws his weight behind coal power". InDaily. Retrieved 6 September 2017.
  25. ^ Hannam, Peter (7 September 2017). "Liddell power plant operating below 40 per cent capacity, faces 'mammoth' woes". The Age. Retrieved 18 November 2021.
  26. ^ Latimer, Cole (31 January 2019). "Energy companies launch industry charter to win back consumers' trust". Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 18 November 2021.
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  28. ^ "AGL rings in a new era with acquisition of Southern Phone Company finalised" (Press release). AGL. 19 December 2019. Retrieved 23 April 2020.
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  30. ^ AGL Energy Withdraws Demerger Proposal AGL Energy May 2022
  31. ^ "Electricity output by primary energy source". AGL 2021 Data Centre. 2021. Archived from the original on 5 March 2022. Retrieved 28 July 2022.
  32. ^ Skulley, Mark (6 December 1997). "AGL adds spark to its gas business with Solaris purchase". Australian Financial Review. Retrieved 18 November 2021.
  33. ^ "The great Australian power sell-off". Crikey. 23 April 2004. Retrieved 18 November 2021.
  34. ^ Guy, Robert (29 January 2000). "Power sale helps slash SA debt". Australian Financial Review. Retrieved 18 November 2021.
  35. ^ "APA Our History". APA Group. APA. 2021. Archived from the original on 25 May 2020. Retrieved 22 July 2021.
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  37. ^ "AGL defends $1.4m Hydro deal". ABC News. 6 November 2005. Retrieved 18 November 2021.
  38. ^ "AGL releases demerger Scheme Booklet". ABN Newswire. 13 February 2006. Retrieved 18 November 2021.
  39. ^ "AGL buys PowerDirect for $1.2 billion". Sydney Morning Herald. 19 February 2007. Retrieved 18 November 2021.
  40. ^ "AGL finalises acquisition of Click Energy". Renew Economy. 30 September 2020. Retrieved 18 November 2021.
  41. ^ AGL Annual Report 2013 (PDF) (Report). 18 September 2013. Retrieved 18 November 2021.[self-published source]
  42. ^ Page 17, "AGL Annual Report 2016", September 2016
  43. ^ "AEMO Participant Registrations List". Retrieved 7 November 2016.
  44. ^ "AEMO Participant Registrations List". Retrieved 21 June 2022.
  45. ^ a b Morris, Katherine (17 August 2017). "Coopers Gap Wind Farm given the green light". South Burnett Times. Retrieved 7 September 2017.
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  48. ^ Fowler, Elouise (3 August 2021). "Nation's largest renewable energy company calls for net zero". Australian Financial Review. Retrieved 28 July 2022.
  49. ^ Hannam, Peter (14 March 2015). "CSG more trouble than it's worth for AGL". Retrieved 13 March 2015.
  50. ^ "EPA investigations find no harm to the environment from AGL's Waukivory Pilot Project and recommend additional monitoring requirements" (Press release). NSW Environment Protection Authority. 19 May 2015. Retrieved 21 August 2015.
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  52. ^ Watts, John; Lyford, Julie (19 July 2023). "Groundswell Gloucester: fighting and winning against fracking". The Commons Social Change Library. Retrieved 23 October 2023.
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  54. ^ "AGL outlines plans to rehabilitate CSG wells near Gloucester". ABC News. 17 February 2016. Retrieved 7 September 2017.
  55. ^ "AGL WILL CLOSE 17 WELLS IN 2017–18 AS IT PREPARES TO CLOSE THE CAMDEN GAS PROJECT BY 2023". Macarthur Chronicle. 28 November 2016. Retrieved 7 September 2017.
  56. ^ "All turbines go for Coopers Gap Wind Farm, set to be Australia's largest". The Queensland Cabinet and Ministerial Directory. 17 August 2017. Retrieved 7 September 2017.
  57. ^ Harmsen, Nick (7 June 2017). "AGL announces plans for new gas-fired power station in South Australia". ABC News. Retrieved 7 September 2017.
  58. ^ Andrews, Jon (20 August 2017). "$250m gas import terminal slated for Crib Point". Herald Sun. Retrieved 7 September 2017.
  59. ^ Clure, Elias (11 August 2017). "Proposed AGL pipeline at Mornington Peninsula potential 'game changer' for energy prices". ABC News. Retrieved 7 September 2017.
  60. ^ Spence, Andrew (16 April 2019). "Pumped hydro future planned for Kanmantoo's big pit". InDaily. Retrieved 4 July 2019.
  61. ^ "AGL secures right to develop pumped hydro energy storage project in South Australia". 16 April 2019. Retrieved 4 July 2019.
  62. ^ Macdonald-Smith, Angela (10 February 2016). "AGL Energy going greener with launch of $3b renewable energy fund". The Sydney Morning Herald. Archived from the original on 13 February 2016. Retrieved 7 September 2017.
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  64. ^ "AGL gets QIC and Future Fund as partners". The Sydney Morning Herald. 27 July 2016. Archived from the original on 7 September 2017. Retrieved 7 September 2017.