Hockey & Co keep China, Germany & Buffet guessing on offensive wind

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Would Joe Hockey prefer to drive past a coal mine on his way to Canberra? And what would China, the world’s installer of new wind energy, make of his remark?

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An hour after I read on-line that Joe Hockey had described wind farms as “utterly offensive”, I drove through the Andalusian plains past dozens upon dozens of wind turbines quietly turning on ridges often near towns. Spain is one of many European nations which have taken wind  energy very seriously, with currently 22.9 gigawatts of installed capacity.

chapman photo

Australia has just 3.059GW, putting us in thirteenth  position behind  nations like China (80.8), USA (60) and Germany (32.4) and six other European nations (UK, Italy, France, Denmark, Portugal, Sweden with a combined total of 26.1GW.  Already wind farms in Australia produce enough energy to power some 1.7m homes.

I first saw wind farms while living in France in 2006.  My reaction to them couldn’t have been more different to Hockey’s. Like many, I saw the non-polluting harvesting of an endless, free fuel. Here was this century’s natural progression of previous centuries’ use of wind to sail ships and turn windmills, but to a degree that offered part of the solution to a growing problem that 97% of the world’s climate scientists agree is real, man-made and likely to be catastrophic.

As has often been remarked, if 97% of the world’s leading specialist doctors told you that you needed a life saving operation and 3% said not to worry, a decision to go with the 3% would be “utterly” unwise.

Seeing wind farms and solar expanding,  I feel the growth of hope that my children and grandchildren will grow up in a world where clean energy has come to steadily complement, then match and soon help replace polluting fuels, with price falls commensurate with the fuel they used being free and boundless.  What’s not to like?

When Hockey next sits down with OECD and other world leaders, it’s likely that his revealing remark will have found its way into more than one diplomatic brief. What will nations now well into full and accelerating embrace of wind energy make of such a remark?

China is far and away the world leader in both economic growth and the installation of  new wind energy capacity – 5.5GW in just six months of 2013 (more than Australia has installed in total since 1992). I try to imagine a conversation between China’s energy minister and our government’s renewable loathing business advisory czars Maurice Newman and Dick Warburton. Then there’s that other economic basket case, Germany, which led new wind energy capacity growth in Europe with another 1.1GW in the same six months. How is it that Maurice and Dick’s sources of information on wind energy being a dud seem to have passed by Germany’s energy policy planners?

And then there’s that financial doofus Warren Buffett, who in 2013 pumped $US1.9 billion into wind development in Iowa. Joe Hockey should get on the phone and let him know where the energy bread is really buttered.

Farmers have always harvested the sun and the rain to feed humanity.  Wind farms are now harvesting the wind to put a massively increasing brake on pollution and greenhouse gas production. Anyone with solar panels on their roof knows how they silently smash your power bill. Anyone who has grown their own fruit and vegetables “gets” the natural wisdom of putting nature to work.  It’s not hard for ordinary people to understand that wind ought to be harvested.

So from what possible set of bizarre values could someone look at the application of the minds of some the world’s best  energy engineers in vastly improving the efficiency of modern wind turbines and call their work not just offensive, but “utterly offensive”?   Community studies consistently show large scale support for renewable energy, so Hockey’s comment will strike three out of four as being plain weird.

Perhaps he has swallowed the propaganda regularly churned out by Alan Jones, on whose program he made his remark, that wind farms “divide” communities.  In my study of the history and distribution of noise or health complaints regarding all 52 Australian wind farms, I found just 129 cases of people who had ever complained out of an estimated 32700 people living within 5km. A majority of wind farms have never received any complaints, and there are no records of a a single complaint in all of Western Australia where there are many farms. Moreover, 72% of all complainants live near just six wind farms heavily targeted by the anti-wind farm lobby’s efforts to spread alarm and hostility. In another paper where I went on a fact checking hunt for the likely factoid that “over 40 families”  had  “abandoned” their homes, walking away from them without sale or compensation as the word implies, I found just 12 families claiming to have moved, two only temporarily. But many of these were known to have other reasons for moving, but found it useful to blame wind farms.

Would Joe Hockey prefer to drive past a filthy open cut coal mine on his way to Canberra? I suspect not. On my drive this morning I also saw quarries, highways,  tall silos, towns, tunnels, bridges, massive power lines, radio towers, airports, rail lines, land clearance for cropping, and urban development. Over the decades, bucolic sentimentalists have used language like Joe Hockey’s for all of these. Thankfully, few of them were in positions of power to ban them.

 

Simon Chapman is Professor in Public Health at the University of Sydney. He has published 469 articles in peer reviewed journals and 17 books and major reports.
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112 Comments
  1. Arjan Wilkie SSE 5 years ago

    Its a worry when a numbers man (Hockey) can be so ignorant of the facts regarding the short- and long-term benefits of renewable energy; its a very restricted perspective that invites any other interpretation. The Govt has been captured by vested interests peddling fossil fuels. The emperor has no clothes.

    • MrMauricio 5 years ago

      “Numbers man”???? What number is his term “Eleventy”

      • Giles 5 years ago

        So just to confirm, u replace BCA? Or are they still a member?

  2. Chris Fraser 5 years ago

    We need to play the same game as all the others. We need to donate to a cause that becomes a member of the North Sydney Forum. Then, you have influence over Joe.

  3. Sam N 5 years ago

    Is our political system broken? Yes we continue to live in a privileged society, but how much of that is just social inertia? It seems we need to evolve our idea of a 21st Century politician. What does he or she need to be? Interested in the answers.

    • Chris Fraser 5 years ago

      One that doesn’t permit money to do political talking.

  4. mark duchamp 5 years ago

    Simon Chapman refers to his trips to Europe where, he says, wind turbines are “quietly turning on ridges often near towns”. I live in Spain half of the year, and in France the other half, and I can tell you that in Spain 5 turbines have been dismantled in Barracas because they made their neighbours ill. In the state of Catalonia, 45 wind turbines are to be dismantled: the judgment is presently under appeal. More court cases are in progress.

    In France, there are over 800 associations fighting to save their village or their home from existing or planned wind farms. Look up “Federation Environnement Durable” on the Net.

    And if you go to http://www.epaw.org, you’ll see that a great many Europeans are very unhappy about the wind farms covering their once gentle countryside, killing birds and bats by the million (www.wcfn.org), and making their neighbours sick.

    • George Papadopoulos 5 years ago

      Mark, I concluded long ago that the dear professor is probably playing his sociological tricks on Australians – he can’t be that ignorant of the true situation…

      Hitler too realised that repeating lies often enough made them facts. I suppose that such tactics are part of any sociology curriculum.

  5. Jim Wiegand 5 years ago

    Simon Chapman’s argument for wind energy is very misleading because of the imminent extinction coming to dozens of species from wind turbines. Not to mention the world wide destruction to ecosystems taking place from these sprawling tax guzzling monsters. His argument that if 97% of Specialist Doctors recommended lifesaving surgery in away does makes sense. But with the wind energy, there has always been is a malpractice issue. In the case of the wind industry, their answer for a life saving heart surgery is equivalent to a leg amputation.

    • Nick Valentine 5 years ago

      Bold claims Jim Wiegand: “…imminent extinction that is coming to dozens of species from wind turbines. Not to mention the world wide destruction to ecosystems taking place…”

      As an environmental scientist I’m concerned. Can you offer any substantiation of your claims (preferably peer reviewed)?

      • Jim Wiegand 5 years ago

        As an expert you should know exactly what I am talking about, Look up the endangered species being slaughtered in Hawaii. Fifty have been reported and these were from rigged studies. And if you are not sure read how these guys are rigging their studies read some of my articles. You might start with “Exposing the Wind industry Genocide.”

        • Nick Valentine 5 years ago

          Any chance of a citation or two Jim? I’ve asked you to substantiate your claims and you’ve asked me to go and find the evidence? I don’t believe you Jim. Please validate your claims with independent commentary.

          • Jim Wiegand 5 years ago

            Quit trying to be cute. Do some reading on you own then come back. There are citations used in many of my articles. In fact why don’t you tell me about something you have written so I can review it.

          • Jim Wiegand 5 years ago

            Hey knot head, go to the article at KITV and click on the link at the bottom of the page. There you will find a list of the endangered species killed by Hawaii wind turbines. There are 50 on the list. This list is very important because in Hawaii, the wind industry has been slaughtering endangered species for years. It has been going on for about 7 years but has only just come out. Fifty endangered species have been recorded killed but the number is very likely in the 300-500 range because of the way that the industry routinely rigs their mortality studies. The other 49 states are still hiding this endangered species slaughter along with thousands of unreported eagles killed by wind turbines. An audit of the
            Eagle Depository in Denver will help to expose some of this.

          • Nick Valentine 5 years ago

            “Hey knot head”? Elegant prose Jim. You are certainly showing your credentials in rational argument.
            I’m afraid you are giving me nothing that gives your claims any credibility. Your own work? That’s essentially vanity press.
            I will give you a final opportunity to present credible scientific literature. If you are unable to do so, please don’t reply further.
            In the interim other readers should be aware that your claims about species extinctions are simply not credible.
            Over to you Jim. And if you’re unable to be civil, don’t trouble yourself with any further replies.

          • Jim Wiegand 5 years ago

            Sorry but I could have taught you a few things and you could have used you credentials to do some good. Instead you tried to discredit me, you also chose not to believe me, so I consider you a knot head. If something is not done about this industry, Species extinctions most definitely are coming from these turbines.

          • Nick Valentine 5 years ago

            Hi Jim, I commend the following to you from the Australian Government’s Chief Scientist: http://www.businessspectator.com.au/article/2014/5/8/policy-politics/science-lesson-maurice-newman-and-senator-brandis?utm_source=exact&utm_medium=email&utm_content=748420&utm_campaign=cs_daily&modapt=
            Incidentally, Jim, what are your credentials in wildlife biology? If I am to discredit you I will need to know your credentials first.

          • Jim Wiegand 5 years ago

            I have decades more research and observations that you ever will. You can try as many others have but you will never be able to discredit me. I advise you to stop trying and to think long and hard about your connection to this industry.

          • Nick Valentine 5 years ago

            Any research published in peer-reviewed journals Jim? Or any document following scientific method?

          • JA R 5 years ago

            Here’s just one item you might like to read by Andrew Pereira, Endangered nene among birds killed by Hawaii wind turbines http://www.kitv.com
            I am sure there are plenty more out there.

          • Nick Valentine 5 years ago

            JA R, Andrew Pereira is a journalist. I’m after expert assessment. I don’t believe there is any despite your assertions of “plenty more out there”. If there is an issue it needs to be credibly substantiated.

          • Jim Wiegand 5 years ago

            Nick give it up. The story is true. I have the documents that prove it. I have sent them out to a number of people. If I were you, (clearly I am not) I would be far more concerned with how this industry is fraudulently rigging the studies you embrace while wiping out rare species across the world.

    • Mike Barnard 5 years ago

      Jim Wiegand neglects to mention his qualifications to make assertions related to wind energy and wildlife, so I’ll just clear that up. He’s an antiques dealer and sometime painter from California. He’s the American outpost of a European anti-wind organization called STEI, which was founded by a guy who has created at least three anti-wind front groups to harvest donations. Forty years ago Jim did an undergrad in biology, and subsequently never worked in or published in the field of wildlife biology.

      Despite this, he claims to both be a wildlife biology expert and to have discovered methodological problems with wind turbine research. He’s not qualified or capable of understanding the methodology, but that doesn’t stop him.

      I ran across his odd universe when he made the claim that wind turbines had killed a third of whooping cranes in the USA and were going to cause their complete extinction in under five years. He was wrong, a-factual, hyperbolic, misleading and deluded on that subject, just as he is on all the rest of his statements about wind turbines. http://barnardonwind.com/2013/02/21/wind-farms-are-being-built-along-whooping-crane-migration-paths-is-there-any-risk-to-them/

      • rucio 5 years ago

        Sez the eminent biologist M. Barnard, citing self.

      • St. Gore 5 years ago

        Sounds like you just described yourself, Mike. You are nothing but a paid hack with an english degree parading around like a clown pretending to be a wind expert.
        It’s time to deal with your fraud.

      • Jim Wiegand 5 years ago

        Mike neglects to mention that I have decades of wildlife research. He also fails to mention that he is not qualified to give any opinions about wildlife. This dweeb has spent his life indoors.

  6. rucio 5 years ago

    Some people see industrial progress and smile (whether for increased profits, power, or a notion of “greater good”). Others see industrial intrusion and weep for the nonhuman world. With every step, something is most certainly lost as well as gained. And then there’s Big Wind, where industrial development encroaches farther than it ever had before by hiding behind a mask of concern for the environment, confident that it can do no wrong, with the result that not only nature, but also human society, loses – with little sign of anything gained.

  7. rucio 5 years ago

    Speaking of Warren Buffett: “I will do anything that is basically covered by the law to reduce Berkshire’s tax rate. For example, on wind energy, we get a tax credit if we build a lot of wind farms. That’s the only reason to build them. They don’t make sense without the tax credit.” –The Wall Street Journal, May 4, 2014, http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702304831304579541782064848174

  8. Young Ng 5 years ago

    Chapman’s so-called ‘97% world leading specialists’ is rubbish. The UN’s IPCC is controlled by politicians and green extremists who know nothing about climate and certainly have tremendous vested interests. If he is serious about the livelihood of our future generations, he should look and check carefully into the environmental, economic, ecological and cultural effectiveness of wind turbines. These turbines are extremely ineffective and produce little energy but are costing current and future taxpayers billions and billions of dollars. Please don’t commit societal suicide and force our future generations to bear these costs just because Chapman feels good just by looking at these giant man-made useless industrial structure. Hockey is wise enough to get rid of this bullshit.

    • Nick Valentine 5 years ago

      “Chapman’s so-called ‘97% world leading specialists’ is rubbish.”

      “These turbines are extremely ineffective and produce little energy but are costing current and future taxpayers billions and billions of dollars.”

      Any proof Young Ng?

    • Ronald Brakels 5 years ago

      I would like to use this opportunity to confess that I am the director of the two secret nuclear reactors that are ramped up and down to make it appear that wind power supplies 27% of South Australia’s electricty despite the fact that wind turbines “produce little energy” as you so correctly pointed out. We’re just bringing our third reactor online today which is something I’m quite proud of. I can safely admit this because wind turbines are actually mind control devices and I am now pressing a button to cause them to emit an infrasound pulse that will convince everyone that this comment is a joke. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go and check that James Bond hasn’t escaped from the escape proof death trap I placed him in and after that I plan to spend some quality time with my albino cat.

      • A Real Libertarian 5 years ago

        Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go and check that James Bond hasn’t escaped from the escape proof death trap I placed him in

        Dude, just shoot him.

        • Ronald Brakels 5 years ago

          You just don’t get it, do you?

          • A Real Libertarian 5 years ago

            No, I don’t get what’s so unthinkable about this:

            Ronald Brakels: Now Mr. Bond, I shall kill you with my most fiendish death trap yet!

            James Bond: Let me guess Roofinger, it’s dogs, or rabbits, or dogs with rabbits in their mouths that shoot rabbits at you when they bark?

            Ronald Brakels: No! It is something even more fiendish then rabbits!

            James Bond: What could possibly be more fiendish then rabbits?

            Ronald Brakels: Bullets!

            [pulls out gun, empties magazine into Bond]

            MUAH-HA-HA-HA-HAAAAAA!!!

          • Ronald Brakels 5 years ago

            Pull a trigger? Myself? Ew! How lower class! No, the above scenario could only possibly work if I had a rabbit fire the gun.

          • A Real Libertarian 5 years ago

            Doing it yourself is lower class?

            Doesn’t that sound like something Tony Abbott would say at a campaign dinner?

            Plus, Jimmy is a Eton Schoolboy, so that would make his death exceedingly annoying.

          • Ronald Brakels 5 years ago

            In response to your questions:
            Yes.
            Yes.
            Eton is a tacky boy’s school. I myself attended the best all girls school in Switzerland, although that came to an end when my testicles decended at the age of 22.

    • Mike Barnard 5 years ago

      This is the kind of comment that news sites around the world have declared to not meet moderation policy.

      The science of human-caused global warming is as resolved as science ever is. It’s as certain as smoking causes cancer which kills people.

      Denial is a waste of time.

      • St. Gore 5 years ago

        So is shilling for IBM and GE to preserve their utility hegemony.

        • Mike Barnard 5 years ago

          Proving that you don’t know what hegemony means or what IBM does. Quite remarkable amounts of ignorance for so short a comment. Keep trying. I’m sure you’ll manage to be more wrong in even fewer words soon.

          • St. Gore 5 years ago

            This is about the time you hop on your other Disqus account and start backing yourself up.

          • Mike Barnard 5 years ago

            Excellent! The guy who is hiding behind a pseudonym is making stuff up about the guy who is completely transparent about who he is, what he does, why he does it and signs his name to everything!

            You have to love the cluelessness of internet trolls like St. Gore. They really don’t understand how silly they sound every time they put fingers to keyboard.

          • St. Gore 5 years ago

            Your transparency is about the consistency of mud. You work full time shilling for IBM (smart grid i.e. the natural gas industry) while pretending you care about renewable energy. You’re a 360 degree fraud, Mike.

          • Mike Barnard 5 years ago

            And you, anonymous stalking troll, continue to prove you have no idea what you are talking about. Thanks for sharing your irrational and inexplicable hatred of me with the world though. I’m sure the world appreciates it.

          • A Real Libertarian 5 years ago

            Well, he’s got us on the sockpuppet accusations.

            How many other people think IBM makes computers instead of oil?

            Plus we claim to be from Canada, which as everyone knows is a fake country made up on South Park.

          • Giles 5 years ago

            It’s well known that IBM stands for International Oil Machines. They simply inserted the B (as in Boil) to create a diversion and to hide their true intent. What do you think computers are made of?

          • A Real Libertarian 5 years ago

            Aren’t they made of soy, so that they can infect everyone with gay?

            It’s why the Tea Party doesn’t believe in the Intertubez.

  9. JA R 5 years ago

    Here we go again, but this time from Spain! S Chapman cannot stop himself from spruiking
    for the industry – wonder if he’s on a private holiday, one where he is meeting
    with friends in the industry, or from a publically funded research grant?

    He compares Australia’s infestation to countries around the
    world, but doesn’t compare the land area or population distribution and density.
    He does refer to the number of homes the installed capacity here could service,
    but fails to mention the installed capacity is far greater than the actual amount
    produced, and he knows it’s far less than the promoted installed capacity. I
    wouldn’t consider the number of projects installed in WA as ‘many’, and he
    doesn’t mention that those he is referring to are not in close proximity to
    homes (none host), or that the older ones are much smaller in number and size
    to the ones where the most adverse effects are being reported.

    He also fails to mention there are a growing number of
    people in all the countries he lists complaining about many different aspects
    of this insidious industry. Nor does he
    take into account the amount of coal and uranium China purchases from Australia
    each year, or that their pollution levels are increasing at an alarming rate.
    Nor does he mention the cost to German industry of rising energy prices,
    leaving some companies looking to move off shore. He doesn’t mention the
    massive human cost in the UK of energy poverty, where people are no longer able
    to heat their homes and buy food.

    This is also of course happening in South Australia, where
    the price of electricity has gone up so much thousands have been cut-off or don’t
    use it anymore because they cannot afford to – some Lucky Country!

    He refers to his research, but ignores it’s been soundly
    condemned for its failings of his methodology or lack of it, even to the extent
    that the only people he spoke to were those hosting turbines or very closely
    involved with the industry.

    As he’s not met with those who have had to leave their homes
    he cannot make other than an assumption as to their reasons for leaving. He has
    never met with those suffering adverse health effects either so he can only base
    his ‘findings’ on his personal desire to see this industry flourish, and
    information provided by the companies, not on well researched valid evidence.

    What harm/hostility are people seeking research causing?
    Those calling for fully independent research are doing so in response to
    meeting with those suffering after their environment was aggressively altered at
    no fault of their own.

    “So from what possible set of bizarre values” can he be
    using to condemn such research requests.
    Maybe he has “swallowed the propaganda” of the industry or just simply
    doesn’t care about the physical and environmental damage he condones.

    I wish he would stop using the term ‘harvesting’, these
    things harvest nothing, neither do they reduce greenhouse gas pollution to any
    degree that will make an iota of difference. Doesn’t he consider these turbines
    and their components manufacturing processes could actually be harming the
    environment?

    His comparison with past use of windmills and other forms of
    energy usage is completely irrelevant to the use of these industrial turbines.
    Neither has their technology advanced in any significant way since they were
    first created, they have just got bigger and that is not new technology.

    Could he please either say something worthwhile and if he
    can’t or cannot provide a balanced argument then he should say nothing.

    I have no problem with him finding these shards of steel thrust
    into the environment beautiful, it’s nothing new for there to be differing interpretation
    of beauty, but for the life of me I cannot agree with him, I see nothing beautiful,
    peaceful or natural about these things.

    • David Osmond 5 years ago

      JA R, you have incorrectly assumed that Simon was using only
      the installed capacity of Australia’s wind farms when calculating how many
      homes they could power.

      You are wrong. By my calculations, 3.059 GW of wind would produce about 9 TWh of electricity per year (assuming a capacity factor of 34%, which is about the average for Australia’s wind farms). That’s about the same as the annual requirements of 1.4 million average Australian homes, or about 6 million homes as efficient as my own.

      • David Osmond 5 years ago

        Your claim that wind turbines won’t make one iota of difference to carbon emissions is also wrong. Have a look at this report from AEMO. Fig 2-2 shows that energy from wind has dramatically increased over the last 5 years in South Australia. It has mainly
        displaced coal power. Figure 2-4 indicates that over the same period, carbon emissions from electricity generation are down 25%. I’d call that a significant difference.

        http://www.aemo.com.au/Electricity/Planning/South-Australian-Advisory-Functions/South-Australian-Historical-Market-Information

        • David Osmond 5 years ago

          You also suggest wind is the cause of high electricity prices in South Australia. Again, here is a table of historic wholesale
          electricity pricing in Australia from AEMO.
          Since 2011-12, South Australia has got about 25% of its electricity from wind. In 2005 it was about 5%. There’s been no trend of increasing electricity prices in South Australia as wind penetration increased. Indeed, prices were 2.5 times as high in
          1998-99 when there was ~0% wind.

          http://www.aemo.com.au/Electricity/Data/Price-and-Demand/Average-Price-Tables

          • JA R 5 years ago

            I, like most end users do not purchase our energy wholesale. We purchase retail.
            I think if you tried to tell those in SA that their energy bills are 2.5 time less now than in 1998-99 they would laugh in your face, and I would not even try to tell those who have either been cut off or have decided not to use it to ensure they can eat because you may find more than a laugh in your face is the reaction.
            I will add that another rise is being asked for by the energy suppliers at the present time.
            You really must investigate more than one source for your information

          • Nick Valentine 5 years ago

            JA R (whoever you are), what is the contribution of renewable energy to your power bill?

          • JA R 5 years ago

            Fortunately for us 100% – none from wind.

          • Nick Valentine 5 years ago

            JA R, why are you conflating wind farms with power prices? Where is the evidence that wind has made a substantial contribution to SA power prices?

          • David Osmond 5 years ago

            That’s a fair point that you don’t pay wholesale for electricity. However, the point remains that if wind was causing SA’s high electricity prices, then that would show up in the wholesale price. But it doesn’t. Most of the rest of your bill is for network costs (spending on poles & wires etc). Only a very small component ~5% is for renewable energy certificates.

            Meanwhile, it appears that SA pricing is predicted to reduce the most of any state for the next few years:

            http://www.aemc.gov.au/getattachment/1658a933-de7d-43eb-b269-5887dacf68e2/National-infographic.aspx

          • JA R 5 years ago

            Yes here we pay for the maintenance and upgrading of the infrastructure, and that impost has been enormous in the past few years as intermittent wind input across vast areas has brought the need for ever increasing infrastructure that under normal circumstance using one or two power generation plants would have been far less of an impost for the consumer.
            Predictions in relation to the price of electricity in this state is like looking into a glass ball to find the answers. They promise and the promises are never kept.

          • David Osmond 5 years ago

            In that case, spending on infrastructure in SA would have increased vastly more % wise than in other states. But it hasn’t. Excessive spending on infrastructure occurred in all states. You are wrong to try to blame all these increases on wind.

          • JA R 5 years ago

            Ah, so you now agree there has been increases. So you accept your comment that in 1989-99 the price was less than now is wrong.
            Thank you

          • Giles 5 years ago

            The market operator has made it very clear that there has been little if any added infrastructure to accommodate wind. The coal fired power station was closed because it was too expensive to run

          • Giles 5 years ago

            SA started with the highest retail price in the country because of its vast network requirements, and because retail prices are not subsidised like they are in WA and Qld. As others have noted, the large amount of wind and solar has served to reduce the wholesale component of the bill quite markedly.

        • JA R 5 years ago

          Sending our emission production off shore to places like China and India doesn’t help anyone – we share the air we breath. While energy from wind may have increased that does not account for the full reduction in Australia’s minor emission reduction. The reduction in the use of electricity for various reasons including the falling of its use in manufacturing is and will continue to have an effect. That people are being ‘cut off’ because they cannot pay their bills make a difference as does the uptake of low energy goods.
          We would make a bigger dent in things if we found ways to reduce what is in the atmosphere to begin with, and encourage other countries to turn to more emission friendly manufacturing methods.

          • David Osmond 5 years ago

            In the case of Sth Australia, in that 5 year period, electricity demand reduced 5%, whereas emissions from electricity reduced 25%. Wind was responsible for most of that reduction in emissions, with demand reduction responsible for a smaller percentage.

            I agree with many of your other comments in the final paragraph.

          • JA R 5 years ago

            And responsible for much of the rise in prices.

          • David Osmond 5 years ago

            No it wasn’t. Spending on poles and wires is responsible for most of the price rises. The cost of renewable energy is only adding ~5% to your cost. As gas prices triple in the next few years, then you will also get to see another dramatic cause of rising electricity prices. Meanwhile, the fossil lobby will continue to try diverting the blame to renewables without any proof.

          • Nick Valentine 5 years ago

            JA R where is your evidence for this “much of the rise in prices”?
            You can’t produce any evidence can you?

        • rucio 5 years ago

          There is a difference between electricity generated from coal and the total amount of coal continuing to be burned.

      • JA R 5 years ago

        As he used the term installed capacity in the previous sentence when referring to Spain, I naturally and I believe correctly took it that his Australian GW ‘s was referring the to same thing – installed capacity.
        I note that his assumed 1.7m homes is more than yours of 1.4m.
        A good example of how difficult it is to know what is true and what is not. Perhaps your calculations are right and he has either made a mistake or exaggerated his point.
        However, the capacity normally refers to the capacity of what the turbine could produce if operating at full capacity 24 hours a day 365 days a year for its lifetime. This of course is not possible as wind does not blow like that, it varies in strength continually. After all it is a natural resource not an engineered one.
        So assuming 34% of capacity produced over a 12 month period is not sufficient to service anywhere near that number of homes. It is necessary to consider when this electricity is being produced, is it available when it is needed, or is it regularly produced at times of least need? If so then it could be seen as a waste product.
        I’m glad to hear that your home is energy efficient, it’s just a pity not all can be adapted in that way, unlike my own. Thought many people are now using energy efficient goods.

        • David Osmond 5 years ago

          You are correct, 3.059 GW is the installed capacity. This is the maximum generation of each turbine, summed up for all turbines in Australia. This is the convention for all power generation. It is not assuming 100% capacity 24 hours a day 365 days a year, it is simply the max output.

          When I assumed a capacity factor of 34%, this means the average output is 34% of 3.059 GW. But some times it is larger, sometimes smaller.

          The discrepancy between the number of homes that I calculated and what Simon calculated could be related to what type home assumed. I used an average home for NSW. But the average is different for each state. Regardless, 1.7m is in the right ball park, and it doesn’t assume that the wind farms are operating flat out 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

          • JA R 5 years ago

            But does it assume the energy is being produced only when it is required or does it take into account that which is produced when it isn’t needed- that is the wasted energy?

          • David Osmond 5 years ago

            none is wasted. In Australia, output from wind is never greater than demand. Due to its low marginal cost, wind displaces output that would have come from a different generator.

          • JA R 5 years ago

            That response does not take into account the energy produced when it is not needed, such as in the middle of the night when at times it is being created at a level which cannot be utilised. Remember wind energy cannot be stored for use when it is needed, so when it is not needed it is ‘lost’ or ‘wasted’.

          • David Osmond 5 years ago

            It does take that into account. As mentioned, output from wind is never greater than demand in Australia. Even during the night. It is true that sometimes this causes some other power stations to ramp down more than they’d like, but the wind power is not wasted.

          • JA R 5 years ago

            Can’t see the point in continuing this discussion as we will never agree.
            It has also gone ‘off topic’, and I have other things to do. I will leave everyone to continue it and read the discussion at some other time.

          • Mike Barnard 5 years ago

            When all around you reasonably and politely point out the errors of your logic and statements, and you refuse to accept correction, the issue is with you, not them.

          • St. Gore 5 years ago

            You are not qualified to correct anyone.

          • Nick Valentine 5 years ago

            St. Gore, don’t be so timid. Pray tell us who you are…

          • St. Gore 5 years ago

            I am St. Gore. You said it yourself, Mike.

          • Giles 5 years ago

            Same applies to coal, which doesn’t like being switched off at night either because they are inflexible. In all markets where too many fossil fuel plants were built, excess capacity has been a problem at night-time. This is not new to renewables. In Victoria, they had to create a new market – off peak hot water – to keep the coal fired power stations busy, when a more sustainable option would have been to encourage gas (expensive now) or solar hot water

  10. George Papadopoulos 5 years ago

    My dear professor, those wind turbines in your picture look like white acupuncture needles stuck into the back of something.

    • Chris Fraser 5 years ago

      I’m jealous of them. I want a few of those near my house.

  11. Miles Harding 5 years ago

    it is safe to assume that (sloppy) Joe Hockey is neither innumerate nor misinformed, leaving hypocrisy as the most likely reason behind his utterly offensive public face.

  12. Marco_Bernardi 5 years ago

    The article is full of contempt for people and the enviroment. It is written by an ideologist for an ideological media. There is no doubt that he writes what he writes.
    Simon Chapmann is author of many polemic trash. Some of them were published during the NHMRC researches. All of these were nailed down by experts who are involved in the ILFN researches for years and decades.
    By the way. The only sense of so called renewable Energy (how can anyone renew energy?) is to make money – lots of money. And that this lust for gold will lead to an collaps is showen here:
    http://youtu.be/-e2U2cYcPro?t=32s

  13. Jutta Reichardt 5 years ago

    Prof. Simon Chapman writes an article, which even tops the ones,
    written by German wind power lobbyists. Rarely have I read so
    much merciless , inhuman and ignorant platitudes . In Germany
    fight more than 1000 citizens’ initiatives , as well as regional
    and national associations for humanity and biodiversity and
    against destructive generation of wind energy. In Europe and
    worldwide, there are a lot more. Medical research for decades,
    on the effects of infrasound on human health , such as made by
    Professor Mariana Alves – Perera in Portugal since 1980.
    Scientists such as Dr. Alec Salt , and others publish their work
    in conferences such as the Inter- Noise since 1985. The Danish
    manufacturer Vestas 2004 has hidden its measurement results in
    an Australian wind farm, along with their resulting demands for
    further research. In Europe, the Mafia is long been active in
    the business with the windy wind power, and she profits very
    well from the funding-programs for the production of windenergy
    of the various European countries.

    These are just a few examples of the worldwide scandal, that is
    happening around the use of wind power.

    Prof. Alves-Pereira

    http://www.nhmrc.gov.au/_files_nhmrc/file/media/events/windfarms_science_forum_mariana_alves_pereira.pdf

    Dr. Salt

    http://oto2.wustl.edu/cochlea/wind.html

    and Fluid Spaces of the Inner Ear

    http://oto2.wustl.edu/cochlea/

    Vestas / AUS

    http://www.windwahn.de/images/stories/PDF/AUSWEA-2004conference.pdf

    However, the biggest disgrace is, how lobbyists and ideologists
    like Simon Chapman deal with the affected residents and species,
    who are sickened by wind turbines, driven out of their homes and
    habitats, or being killed by the turbine blades or the
    barotrauma.

    Whatever your reason, reprehensible is both: ideology and paid
    lobbying.

    If Mr. Chapman or other lobbyists and ideologists once want to
    be informed, on the European reality of living near wind
    turbines, here the example of guinea pigs in northern Germany,
    today living for 19 years in the midst of wind farms, click here
    http://youtu.be/RiQ3EVhGriA

    Jutta Reichardt, Guinea pig from Germany and activist for human
    and biodiversity from Northern Germany

    ———————————————————————————————————————————————————————————-

    Prof.Simon Chapman schreibt einen Artikel, der sogar die
    deutschen Windkraftlobbyisten toppt. Selten habe ich soviel
    gnadenlose, menschenverachtende und ignorante Allgemeinplätze
    gelesen. In Deutschland kämpfen mehr als 1000 Bürgerinitiativen,
    sowie regionale und bundesweite Verbände gegen die Mensch- und
    Artenvielfalt zerstörende Erzeugung von Windenergie. In Europa
    und weltweit sind es noch viel mehr. Mediziner erforschen seit
    Jahrzehnten die Auswirkungen von Infraschall auf die menschliche
    Gesundheit, z.B. Prof. Mariana Alves-Perera in Portugal seit
    1980. Wissenschaftler wie Dr. Alec Salt und andere
    veröffentlichen ihre Arbeiten in Konferenzen wie z.B. der
    Internoise. Der dänische Hersteller Vestas hat 2002 ihre
    Messergebnisse in einer Australischen Windfarm verschwinden
    lassen zusammen mit ihrer daraus resultierenden Forderungen nach
    weiterer Forschung. In Europa ist seit Jahren die Mafia in das
    windige Geschäft mit der Windkraft eingestiegen und zockt die
    Förderprogramme der verschiedenen europäischen Staaten ab.

    Dies sind nur wenige Beispiele zum weltweiten Skandal, der sich
    rund um die Windkraftnutzung abspielt.

    Prof. Alves-Pereira

    http://www.nhmrc.gov.au/_files_nhmrc/file/media/events/windfarms_science_forum_mariana_alves_pereira.pdf

    Dr. Salt

    http://oto2.wustl.edu/cochlea/wind.html

    and Fluid Spaces of the Inner Ear

    http://oto2.wustl.edu/cochlea/

    Vestas / AUS

    http://www.windwahn.de/images/stories/PDF/AUSWEA-2004conference.pdf

    Die größte Sauerei ist jedoch der Umgang mit den betroffenen
    Anwohnern und Arten, die durch die Windturbinen vertrieben, bzw.
    getötet werden

    Allerdings ist die größte Schande , wie Lobbyisten und Ideologen
    wie Simon Chapman befassen sich mit den betroffenen Bewohnern
    und Arten, die von Windkraftanlagen krank sind , aus ihren
    Häusern getrieben und Lebensräumen oder durch die Rotoren oder
    Barotrauma getötet werden.

    Whatever your reason, reprehensible is both: ideology and paid
    lobbying.

    If Mr. Chapman or other lobbyists and ideologists once want to
    be informed, on the European reality of living near wind
    turbines, here the example of guinea pigs in northern Germany,
    today living for 19 years in the midst of wind farms, click here
    http://youtu.be/RiQ3EVhGriA

    Jutta Reichardt, Guinea pig from Germany and activist for human
    and biodiversity from Northern Germany

    • Mike Barnard 5 years ago

      Vibro-acoustic disease is at best a mistake by an incompetent and at worst a workers’ compensation ploy. Norwegian studies focussed on it using helicopter crews and passengers as study and control groups found no evidence of acute or chronic changes. One also pointed out that the key physical evidence Castelo-Branco found — thickening of the pericardium — was misinterpreted as he thought the pericardium was normally 3-4 times thinner than it actually is. An Australian assessment found that 74% of all citations to VAD papers were from the VAD papers themselves, instead of the more usual 7%. http://barnardonwind.com/2013/10/04/vad-venal-arrogant-distortion/

      The rest of your citations are equally suspect.

      • rucio 5 years ago

        He says, citing himself.

        • St. Gore 5 years ago

          This barnard fraud needs shut down.

        • Mike Barnard 5 years ago

          Please review the material where four peer-reviewed studies are assessed and cited with full traceability.

  14. Jim Wiegand 5 years ago

    Every should pay a visit to the go to the wind turbine/endangered species article on the KITV web site “Hawaii windmills take a toll on endangered animals. “Once there click on the link at the bottom of the page. There you will find a list of the endangered species killed by Hawaii’s wind turbines. There are 50 on the list. This list is very important because in Hawaii, the wind industry has been slaughtering endangered species for years. It has been going on for about 7 years but has only just come out. Fifty endangered species have been recorded killed but the number is very likely in the 300-500 range because of the way that the industry routinely rigs their mortality studies. The other 49 states are still hiding this endangered species slaughter along with thousands of unreported eagles killed by the industry’s wind turbines. An audit of the Eagle Depository in Denver will help to expose some of this.

    • Nick Valentine 5 years ago

      Jim, what is the source for that list please?

      • Jim Wiegand 5 years ago

        The story is true. I have the documents that prove it. I
        have sent them out to a number of people. If I were you, which clearly I am not, I would be far more concerned with how this industry is
        fraudulently rigging the studies you embrace, while wiping out rare
        species across the world.

        • Nick Valentine 5 years ago

          “The story is true”. Thanks Jim, case closed.
          Once again, where is the independent proof of your assertions?
          And what are these “documents” you refer to?

          • Jim Wiegand 5 years ago

            Tell everybody that might happen to be reading any of this, your employer, qualifications, and any reports you have helped to write or have written pertaining to this industry. .

          • Nick Valentine 5 years ago

            Burden of proof Jim. You’re making the claims.
            What have my credentials got to do with anything?
            I’m just asking questions that you are failing to answer. I wasn’t aware I needed to be qualified to do that?
            Come on Jim, can you do better?

          • Jim Wiegand 5 years ago

            You forget, I am the wiser and you should be answering my questions. So please, if you have any credentials or accomplishments I demand to know this information. Knowing this is very important because that will help me to discern the level of my responses.

          • Nick Valentine 5 years ago

            You “demand to know” do you Jim? I think I’ll ignore you on that one. I tell you what Jim, you submit your documents to a credible scientific journal for publication and come back to us with the outcome.
            You have asserted species extinctions from wind farms. I’ll ask again where is the independent evidence?

          • Jim Wiegand 5 years ago

            Exactly who is “US” and I do insist on knowing about your background. It is very possible that you are not capable of even understanding an answer. I will however answer this for you……….I do not know of any credible scientific journals dealing with wind industry matters that still exist. Remember wind industry studies are not standardized and their methodology changes from study to study. In addition because of voluntary regulations in America there are no penalties for the industry’s ongoing fraud.

          • A Real Libertarian 5 years ago

            Why should we listen to you? You’re Hitler!

            This story is true. I have the documents that prove it.

            You demand I prove it? You have to prove your qualifications to prove you’re not Hitler!

            You forget, I am not Hitler and you should be answering my questions!

          • Jim Wiegand 5 years ago

            You don’t have to listen to me and actually I hope you don’t.

          • St. Gore 5 years ago

            (Barnard), (Libertarian) and (Valentine) are attempting to use the illusion of a majority in their coordinated ad hominem attack against you, Jim. I had to jump in when I saw that (Libertarian) called you “Hitler”. These type of attack methods are detestable.

            Mike has already outed himself as an industry shill and his cohorts are most likely other accounts of his or fellow shills under the same employ.

            Mike spends most of his time shilling for the big wind industry and then turns right around and attacks companies with technology which deviates from his employers agenda. Case in point: his rabid attacks against Google’s Makani Wind.

            Mike will never be capable of understanding any subject of scientific importance because he is neither a scientist nor an expert as he claims. In short, he’s just a fraud shilling for big wind.

          • Jim Wiegand 5 years ago

            These scumbags are like water off a ducks back to me. Their only game is to lie, harass, and bully which can never work against me because I have the real facts. Thanks for the support.

          • A Real Libertarian 5 years ago

            These scumbags are like water off a ducks back to me.

            So we make all life on Earth possible, and we’ll be here long after you and your kind have died out?

            because I have the real facts

            If you’re talking about the secret mind control rays hidden in every wind turbine, then I’m sorry to break it to you, but Comrade Corporal-General Smellyonich of Prussia is one of ours.

          • A Real Libertarian 5 years ago

            I had to jump in when I saw that (Libertarian) called you “Hitler”. These type of attack methods are detestable.

            Reductio ad absurdum FTW!

            P.S. Since you think “Deus Ex Machina” is a logical fallacy

            ( https://reneweconomy.com.au/2014/wind-farm-noise-complainants-and-anti-wind-groups-how-many-how-large-34978#comment-1392140167 )

            I’m giving you a definition of “Reductio ad absurdum “:

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reductio_ad_absurdum

          • Nick Valentine 5 years ago

            Nice swerve Jim. Any credible wildlife journal will do.
            It’s been several days now Jim. Are you able to provide any scientific papers backing your claims of species extinctions from wind farms?

          • Jim Wiegand 5 years ago

            Like I told you I do not know of any credible scientific journals dealing with wind industry matters that still exist. I know this from reading so many bad articles being passed off as science. If you happen to know of one or two exemplary articles, point them out for readers.

          • Nick Valentine 5 years ago

            Jim, wildlife biology journals deal with wildlife matters. With the extensive credentials in the field you claim, presumably you are aware of the reputable journals in the field?
            I’m not asking you about “journals dealing with wind industry matters” I’m asking you about wildlife biology.
            Jim, you have commented extensively here but the question remains as to the credibility of your claims. I have asked you several times for independent verification of your assertions and you have failed to provide anything of substance. That speaks volumes.
            Further, your bewildering attempts to undermine my credibility defy logic.
            The burden of proof lies with you Jim. Provide the substantiation and readers can judge for themselves.

          • Jim Wiegand 5 years ago

            I am aware of the journals pertaining to the wildlife, wildlife management, ornithology etc. You put great faith in these journals; I do not and never have. Even when I was in college I saw obvious problems with certain articles or information I was being told by professors that had even written for these publications.

            I am specifically pointing out to you and any readers, that
            these publications you hold in great esteem do publish bogus peer reviewed articles pertaining to the wind industry. You can not point out one article pertaining
            to the wind industry and wildlife impacts that is truly scientific.

            As for my credibility……… With you , I don’t care because there will never be any. It does not matter what I say I know you will continue to try to discredit me. If you had any way to attack any of the information in my articles you would. But you can not because I speak the truth and I know much more than you on these topics.

            My work and research expose the so called experts taking
            wind industry money and writing articles. Beside posting comments on poorly written wind energy articles like this one, I also prepare communities and give advice for
            legal cases pertaining to the wind industry. The task is really not very difficult because I have been exposing other so called top experts in the field of wildlife biology since
            1990.

            Thankfully great numbers of people are listening and wind
            projects are getting shut down.

  15. Jim Wiegand 5 years ago

    What the story from Hawaii really represents is the extinction of species coming to this world from wind turbines. It is right there in front of everybody ………This industry is killing off endangered species. This extinction will take place to dozens of species from wind turbines while this industry continues to lie to the public that they are saving world and the true limitations of these inefficient turbines.

    Not only should there be a moratorium on these propeller style turbines, they should be permanently banned and torn down. This story from Hawaii should also be front page news across the World and full scale investigations launched into the fraud taking place with this industry

    Some wind industry facts…………Right after thousands of wind turbines went up in the prime condor habitat at Tehachapi Pass, CA over half the remaining endangered California condor population disappeared.

    In the Central Flyway states where a wind energy boom has taken place since 2007, the endangered whooping cranes stopped increasing in numbers and hundreds have turned up missing. None of this has been “reported” by the industry
    (voluntary regulations mean they do not have to) but I will point out that one
    whopping crane was found dead outside a wind farm with very severe injuries
    that could have very easily been caused by a turbine blade strike. I have proof of this.

    Since the early 1990s over 80 percent of the golden eagle population has disappeared from CA and at Altamont it was proven that wind turbines were the number one cause of Golden Eagle mortality. For proof read my articles about the abandoned golden eagle habitat that has been documented through out CA.

    The Aransas Wood Buffalo Whopping Crane population is in trouble and the FWS changed their count methodology to hide this fact. After Tom Stehn retired, the FWS service went to a completely different method of counting the cranes. Tom Stehn even slammed the FWS for their new bogus count methodology. A search of the internet will confirm this. Now with the new count methodology the reported
    whooping population has a 95% CI with a spread of about 150. In a population of less than 300, these numbers are ludicrous.

    On the FWS web site they are posting extremely low wind turbine mortality numbers taken from paid wind industry “so called experts” that derive their
    mortality estimates from rigged mortality surveys. Also everyone should keep in mind that the FWS has known about the wind industry killing endangered species for at least 7 years and has said NOTHING.

  16. WindEnergy'sAbsurd 5 years ago

    ‘And then there’s that financial doofus Warren Buffett, who in 2013
    pumped $US1.9 billion into wind development in Iowa. Joe Hockey should
    get on the phone and let him know where the energy bread is really
    buttered.’

    This would be the same Warren Buffett, then, Mr Chapman, who in 2014 – three days ago to be precise – said to an audience in Nebraska “I will do anything that is basically covered by the
    law to reduce Berkshire’s tax rate. For example, on wind energy, we get a
    tax credit if we build a lot of wind farms. That’s the only reason to
    build them.”?

    The only point on which we agree is that he certainly is no doofus.

  17. Jim Wiegand 5 years ago

    Everyone needs to read more about the misguided author of this terrible article………… Senator Madigan speaks about threat of libel suit from Simon Chapman
    https://www.wind-watch.org/news/2014/06/18/senator-madigan-speaks-about-threat-of-libel-suit-from-simon-chapman/

  18. Jim Wiegand 5 years ago

    I was sent this yesterday about commenter Mike Barnard. In a way I was disappointed because as a spokesman for wind energy he reflected the true despicable character of this fraudulent industry. For years Mr. Barnard’s comments inspired readers across the world to rightfully hate the wind industry. In the end he was exposed like the “wizard of OZ” for being nothing but a puffed up expert dweeb…………. Mike Barnard’s wind wings clipped by employer IBM: Told to stop
    writing on wind power, resign fellowship from Energy and Policy Institute,
    and delete his blog: Barnard on Wind

    Mike Barnard last month was taken to task by researcher Jackie Rovensky of AU and NA-PAW (North American Platform Against Wind Power) for a long-standing series of malicious attacks on
    trusted and respected professionals worldwide, who have variously documented
    and researched the now widely recognized devastating effects of industrial wind
    on human health.

    This action by IBM is easily
    understood.

    Barnard is best known for his self-proclaimed stance as a pro wind “expert”, who critiques others for their “lack of expertise.” He has zero qualifications for his writings on wind, yet “calls himself the lead researcher” in a study that calls wind victims “liars.” Barnard has also falsely asserted that his“power reading” and
    “constant and deep access and conversations related to public health management, epidemiology and the nature of medical evidence … That experience and on-the-job education has been invaluable as I’ve read through health studies and reviews related to wind power from around the world”
    …which led to “recognition of my expertise … I’m pleased to say that my material is helping to shape legal defences of wind energy, advocacy programs and investments in several countries.”

    This bravado has found its “religious” base with wind power developers and promoters, but Barnard now can only boast of a protracted vacation from writing on wind.

    Others use his cyber bullying and “manufactured facts” to recreate their own smears.

    IBM Corporate Officer (Brand Manager, Communications) Carrie Bendzsa, after numerous discussions with Lange of NA-PAW, wrote to NA-PAW, thanking the organizationfor bringing this matter to their attention, asserting that none of “these
    postings or comments (libel by Barnard) were IBM endorsed actions.”

    The Communique continues:

    “We don’t have an advocacy position on energy and we have a number of social
    computing guidelines and policies in place that our employees are instructed
    and expected to follow. Furthermore, the individuals who are upset by the
    postings should be assured that IBM does not have any negative views about them
    personally or professionally. IBM has spent considerable time reviewing this
    matter internally and has taken several actions that our employee has agreed to
    comply with to resolve this matter. These include having the employee delete
    the Barnardonwind blog, terminate the Energy and Policy Institute Senior Fellow
    role and agree to no longer publish on wind energy. We truly appreciate you
    stepping forward to bring this matter to our attention.”

    Lange notesthat the kind of serial cyber bullying that has occurred with Barnard on Wind, some of which has been subsumed into other pro wind sites, is of a serious
    nature: “It is regarded as irrational, unprovoked criticism,” based on the
    apparent, some would say obvious, intent to harm careers and cast doubt on the
    professional integrity of individuals. It has no basis in fact, and can be
    compared in a way to “hate” speech.

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