Engie to invest in new large scale solar farms as it prepares to close Hazelwood, confirming the rapid shift from coal fired power to solar in Australia. Still, conservatives and fossil fuel lobbyists are continuing to attack renewables.
Articles by Giles Parkinson
Giles Parkinson is a journalist of 30 years experience, a former Business Editor and Deputy Editor of the Financial Review, a columnist for The Bulletin magazine and The Australian, and the former editor of Climate Spectator.
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Two major forces stand opposed in 2017. One is the falling cost of solar, wind, storage and other smart controls – heralding an “unstoppable” energy transition away from centralised, polluting fossil fuel plants. The other is political.
Tesla was the dominant news force in 2016. The other big themes were battery storage, the price falls in wind and solar, the big shift from centralised energy, and politics, politics, politics.
Despite predictions that consumers – households and businesses – will be supplying half of all electricity needs within a few decades, the automatic reflex of the institutions that govern our electricity market remains to protect the incumbents. This needs to change.
We’ve read and reported on some remarkably misinformed analysis in recent weeks, including from country’s principal energy rule maker and government’s favourite energy consultant. But this one on solar and battery storage just about takes the biscuit.
Northern Territory appoints leading lights in wind and solar to panel devising strategy for its 50 per cent renewable energy target.
GE technology chief says days of “relying solely on synchronous generation for everything are over”. In a direct challenge to those who say grid security can only be assured by spinning coal and gas turbines, the world’s biggest provider of energy equipment says wind and solar can do the job just as well.
Enova Energy decides to lift solar feed in tariff to 12c/kWh, good news for solar households, including those about to lose premium tariffs. The small community owned retailer is rattling the big boys in the energy market – not because of its size, but what it stands for.
NSW and Queensland – which still own their networks – block reforms that could lower network costs. Meanwhile, Finkel sings praises of pumped hydro and household battery storage to COAG energy ministers.