LNP turns its back on wind, solar and storage, and emissions cuts

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LNP’s call for more coal-fired power stations, and government ownership of the railway line to the Adani coal project were largely symbolic, as were resolutions to “protect Christmas” and save the “Lord’s Prayer”. But they underline why a NEG won’t end the climate and energy policy wars.

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AAP Image/Darren England
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Michael McCormack
“We are very pro-coal.” Nationals leader Michael McCormack. AAP Image/Darren England

Can we stop pretending that the National Energy Guarantee somehow, miraculously, ends the deep political divide between the mainstream political parties over climate and energy policy?

The Liberal National Party in Queensland – one of the key battlegrounds in the next federal election – has effectively turned its back on renewable energy technologies and emissions reductions, and called for new coal fired power stations to be built in the state.

The call for more coal-fired power stations, and government ownership of the railway line to the Adani coal project were largely symbolic, as were their resolutions to “protect Christmas” and save the “Lord’s Prayer”, but they underline exactly where this federal government is at, as well as its state offshoots.

“We are very pro-coal in the LNP. Of course we are,” Michael McCormack, the federal leader of the Nationals said when addressing the conference over the weekend.

In calling for new coal-fired power stations, the LNP – which is Queensland acts as the one party rather than a Coalition of Nationals and Liberals – is effectively turning its back on the significant and world-leading renewable and storage projects that are already under development.

In and around Townsville and Cairns, the state is host to a series of projects such as the newly connected Lakeland solar and battery storage installation – the first in Australia to combine the two on the main grid – the Kennedy Energy Hub, combining wind, solar and storage in a world first, that could grow 20-fold in size to a 1200MW “baseload renewables” plant, and the world-first combination of large-scale solar 270MW) and pumped hydro (250MW)at Kidston, which may also have 150MW wind attached to it.

Any of these two huge projects – or even the new hub proposed by Neon, would remove the need to have a new HELE coal plant built in North Queensland. (See our story: The changing shape of wind and solar on Australia’s grid).

Even the region’s biggest energy user – the Sun Metals zinc refinery – has opened a 124MW solar plant to provide one-third of its needs and provide the cheap power and cost certainty needed to go ahead with a $300 million upgrade.

But still the LNP charges headlong into the past – even after dumping from its Senate ticket two of its most conservative and reactionary members – Ian “Australia was once covered in ice – of course the climate changes” MacDonald, and Barry “I will die in a ditch beside the road” before accepting emission standards for cars’ O’Sullivan.

One of the lines being pushed by the federal Coalition government, and surprisingly embraced by nearly all of mainstream media, is that the NEG, with its obligations for both emissions and reliability, will end the climate and energy wars between it and Labor.

Nothing could be further from the truth. The NEG’s emissions and reliability obligations would never be enacted under a Coalition government, because its emissions target is so weak and will likely be met soon after 2021, and because there is no reliability problem.

In calling for coal, the LNP – and the federal Nationals for that matter (who actually want the government to fund three new coal-fired generators) – are thumbing their nose at any increase in emissions, and shooting themselves in the foot if they are serious about meeting the targets already committed to.

Going soft on electricity means a greater burden on other industries, specifically those that should matter most to the LNP and Nationals – transport and agriculture among them.

Yet, renewables present the greatest economic opportunity for regional Australia – not just in generation but also in reviving the manufacturing industry.

And while the Nationals and LNP rail against renewable subsidies – wrongly assuming that the Australian is right in claiming the cost to be $4 billion a year (it is a fraction of that) – they blithely ignore the massive cross-subsidy that provides power to regional Australia.

In Queensland and Western Australia, this subsidy has amounted to $600 million a year in each state, and is one reason why the coffers are near exhausted (in Perth, where all electricity is subsidised), or costs are so high in Queensland and other states.

Simply put, if the cost of delivering power was to be paid by the consumer, the last thing they would choose to do is string wires across thousands of kilometres to connect to coal fired generators to source all their needs.

They would focus instead of renewables-based micro-grids, and that reality is now being accepted by network owners and market operators – if not the owners of the big power plants – as the model for the future grid.

The LNP, with their push for more centralised coal, simply want to ignore the climate, ignore the economics and the engineering of renewable power, and double down on regional cross-subsidies with yet more.

The NEG, should the Coalition remain in government, will be nothing more than an empty frame at best, and a significant hand brake to new technologies at worst.

What really matters is the emissions target, and these two parties are as far apart now as they were a decade ago. The Coalition wants to limit the electricity sector to a 26 per cent target, and wants that locked in so it cannot be change before 2030.

The Labor wants emissions to be cut by 45 per cent, and it is fair to say that the bulk will come from electricity, which makes sense because with the plunging cost of wind and solar, the possibilities from storage, demand management and energy efficiency, this is where the cheapest abatement can be found.

But the conservatives are simply not interested. As the Queensland conference highlights, those within the conservatives movement who want be serious about climate change, and who recognise the benefits of renewables – and such people do exist – are simply being drowned out.

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144 Comments
  1. Ben 4 months ago

    “…because there is no reliability problem.” Not according to AEMO, AER or the Energy Security Board, mentioned in all their published reports in the last few years.

    “…What really matters is the emissions target”. To idealists, yes probably, but to many many others, not so much.

    I’d suggest that it is better policy to avoid rapid changes in the energy sector.

    Besides, from February 2016 to February 2018, global average temperatures dropped by 0.56 degrees Celsius. That is the biggest two-year drop in the past century.

    https://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/graphs/

    • Rod 4 months ago

      The ESB said there is no reliability problem. You know better? Got any links?
      Either you posted the wrong link or can’t read a graph but all I see is a TREND line with ever higher average sea plus land temps.

      • Ben 4 months ago

        Rod, you just need to read the energy security board’s Dec17 report, it’s all there. The chapter summary is quoted below, page 27.

        “As the Finkel Review noted the frameworks under which reliability of supply in the NEM is delivered have been compromised. The requirement for dispatchable power has not been linked with emissions reduction objectives. The lack of a settled policy for carbon emissions has meant that as the proportion of variable renewables increases and the aging dispatchable plant retires without sufficient replacement, issues of reliability must be addressed.

        The “health” of the current reliability of supply in the NEM is CRITICAL, especially in some regions.”

        As for the graphs, look for the “global monthly mean surface temperature change”. It might be NASA but reading a graph is not rocket science…

        • Rod 4 months ago

          Yet again, very selective in your comprehension. You must have missed this bit. “The lack of a settled policy for carbon emission”

          You do understand the word “trend”?

          • Ben 4 months ago

            Rod, emissions reduction and reliability are separate items. You can try being selective, or deliberately obtuse, but the reality is that all recent power system reports from the organisations that matter repeat the message that reliability and stability are becoming more of a concern.
            More renewables like wind and solar do not improve reliability and stability, they make it worse.
            Say after me, slowly, “wind power is intermittent”.
            SA wind output = 30 MW right now.
            You have not acknowledged that the trend I directed you to at NASA GISS shows two years of significant cooling. Are you able to acknowledge it?

          • WR 4 months ago

            Lol at cherry-picking data. Let’s see, if I take the peak monthly temperature value from the strongest El Nino period on record and compare it with one of the lowest minimum values from the following La Nina period, I get a ‘trend’ of -0.28 deg per year. The world must be cooling. lol.

            I suspect you are being deliberately misleading for ideological or financial reasons but lets give you the benefit of the doubt and assume that you are simply ignorant when it comes to identifying meaningful trends in global surface temperature graphs.

            The shortest period you should be looking at to identify a meaningful trend with regard to greenhouse warming is 11-years. That period is long enough to average out the variability introduced by El Nino and La Nina events, volcanic eruptions and solar cycles. If you use this value the Giss data gives an almost exactly linear warming rate of 0.18 deg Celsius fer decade since the early 1970’s. You can download the data from the GISS website and check this for yourself if you have any doubts.

          • john 4 months ago

            I had a conversation with The Person who espouses there is zero Global Warming the said Christoper Monckton.
            Link to this person.

          • Joe 4 months ago

            ‘Lord’ Christopher Monckton can now add ‘Doctor’ to his…credentials?

          • solarguy 4 months ago

            Jesus just look at his eyes, they scream “hyper thyroidism”.

          • MaxG 4 months ago

            ROFL

          • solarguy 4 months ago

            And that means?

          • Hettie 4 months ago

            It means,
            Rolls on floor laughing. Can be extended with MFAO. My f***ING arse off.

          • MaxG 4 months ago

            Rolling On Floor Laughing…
            I thought in the age of the mobile phone this would be understood; like BTW by the way, etc. 🙂
            Text message abbreviations…

          • solarguy 4 months ago

            Ah ha, Glad to tickle your funny bone Max. Good to be enlightened.

          • Hettie 4 months ago

            You must be working too hard. Even I know some of this stuff, mostly from facebook, I must confess, but not from discussing photos of dinner or videos of cats, rather groups of people who are trying to get help for the refugees on Manus Island and Nauru, or discussing how god awful the government is, and comment streams in the Guardian, especially the FirstDog on the Moon cartoons. Most of which are biting satire, but all of which had ROFL moments.
            Rambling again. Time for bed.

            Good Night 💤🌙
            😊 Sweet Dream
            🌠🌠🌠🌠🌠🌠🌠

          • solarguy 4 months ago

            Just sleep deprived, I’m developing an aversion to lying down as it brings on worse coughing fits. I have always dreaded the monkey’s and immune suppressants don’t help, would trade a simple clean broken arm, at least I would get pain relief and sleep. So now I know what ROFL means, only took 59 yrs.

          • Hettie 4 months ago

            I’ll email you with some info that might help

          • solarguy 4 months ago

            Oh and just to add, he has never been a member of the house of lords. Did he discover sniffing petrol laced with coal dust, as his cure. lol.

          • Joe 4 months ago

            Yes I did know that he was never a member of The House of Lords.

          • Gyrogordini 4 months ago

            “…it does sound barking mad…” Yes, it does.

          • john 4 months ago

            Exactly and this person has gone all over the world and has been taken as a believable person.
            I think we do have a problem.
            Not we just people who have an ability to understand a reasonable understanding of a sane person.

          • MaxG 4 months ago

            he must be a neoliberal :))

          • Rod 4 months ago

            Talk about selective. Tell me how much wind we, SA, had last week?
            Talk about slow. You must have missed the work done at Hornsdale and now in Tassie on wind farms providing FCAS.
            Significant cooling trend? At least two of those words have been misused. You work out which ones.
            Oink.

          • RobertO 4 months ago

            Hi Rod Ben a coal troll. enough said I blocked him.

          • Joe 4 months ago

            Yep, Trolli Ben has been a little busy the last few days scribbling his rubbish in the very fine pages of Renew Economy.

          • Rod 4 months ago

            I was bored and felt the need to respond to his rubbish. The fact he couldn’t see the very obvious warming trend in the graphs he cited was very amusing.

          • Ben 4 months ago

            Hi Rod, is that you acknowledging that wind power in SA can be lots or not much?

            Progress!

          • Rod 4 months ago

            Oink!

          • Cooma Doug 4 months ago

            Failure of large base load gens are the cause of the most severe frequency excursions and instability.
            The reason we must hold over 700 mws of reserve is because of coal gen failures.
            Serious system disturbances caused by renewable failure, zero so far this century.

          • RobertO 4 months ago

            Hi Cooma Doug, we will at some stage have a failure of an RE generator, however our largest WTG is under 4 MW so we will not even notice it. By far our largest issue will be the claim that RE caused the SA Blackout (and the sad part is that people still believe it). So a lighting strike near Negan Solar farm at 9 pm will be blamed on Solar power and people will believe it (it was printed the mur rag paper as gospel truth, and they swear by it).

          • Cooma Doug 4 months ago

            I worked for many years in a job dealing with power system security in NSW. From the planing, co ordinating area, to the hands on control and emergency response.
            Looking back there was the 1990 Newcastle earth quake. The event tripped a couple of large coal gens. Where I was working at Snowy we quickly responded with 1200 mw.

            Back a little further there was the blowing up of a Large coal gen and some follow on losses due to the frequency excursion. It was hard to fix because of the 35 hour week union campaign and some restrictions on plant response because of an industrial dispute.

            There was a major bush fire in NSW around year 2000, that caused NSW and Vic to separate. That was a killer and hard to fix because the computer systems for response required the states to be connected. We were the assigned frequency control but had to resort to doing it by hand and meter observation. We got things back together and managed to prevent a system black with a bit of quick thinking and some luck. After that event the security design and functions were changed to cope with such events.

            In between these major events there have been 100s of frequency excursions and mostly
            due to the loss of fossil gens. There was a plane crashing into a major line in Vic and the extreme weather event in SA knocking down power lines. But 500 mw coal going down is the norm. This has always been responded to in a way where we ram the energy down their throats needed or not.

            This is the big change moving in. The loss of 600 or evan 1000 mw of generation will not require us to find it and ram it on line. Load responses will be not only very rapid but because of local frequency load response, will eliminate the system power swings and greatly improve system stability. All this by load shifting.

            From my point of view the load side response of the future will be replacing the need for a lot of infrastructure. Large base load plant installed in this new system wll be the last choice. You may say that large solar and or large wind farms are effectively the same.
            This is not so. They can adjust power output rapidly from very low to full load using the the load shifting infrastructure and technology.

          • Ben 4 months ago

            Hi Doug, I accept your point, which is that frequency disturbances do occur, and will continue to occur. But in the case where a big unit trips – eg 500 MW at Loy Yang – the remaining generators pick up load when the remote AGC says to. Of course this is delayed by distance and processing. What should happen, and does happen by design except when the deadbands are expanded, is the governors on synchronous generators respond to frequency in real time, before AEMO systems can react. This automatic response has basically been overridden so that frequency response originates from the AEMO system. Deliberately incorporating this delay will of course result in additional frequency excursions. There is a good report on this by an engineer floating around.

            I must disagree with your implication that wind and solar can rapidly increase output on demand.

            How many Loy Yang unit trips have been caught by a wind farm?

            Zero.

          • Cooma Doug 4 months ago

            Load side response will reduce spinning reserve requirements.
            Load side response will be in some cases, batteries going from full charge to discharge within 10 milli seconds of an event. That will be the highest cost product I expect. Second rung of the bid ladder would be load switching in similar time frames.
            This process will sustain stability of state interconnector flows and voltage.

            There will be, instead of spinning synchronous reserves, load switch options that have zero costs in readiness for initiation. The situations of need for large energy quantity in security issues will use synchronous hydro plant I expect.

          • Ben 4 months ago

            I agree with demand management, under the condition it is voluntary and not done for a fee. Because paying people NOT to use power is the worst option.

            Batteries will help for niggly stuff, minor adjustments or reinforcement, but not for days without wind or sun.

            Hydro for sure, pray for no drought though!

          • Ben 4 months ago

            Hi Doug, a serious comment, thanks. Reasonably accurate too, but I have a technical rebuttal, and the units are MW!

            It is correct to say that a large generator tripping can cause a frequency excursion, and that the standard practise to mitigate against this risk is to ensure there is enough spinning reserve to cover the largest online unit – currently about 700 MW at Kogan Ck. I’m not sure how AEMO manage that part.

            Two questions for you on this then – why have the governor deadbands been expanded, and when did the last single unit trip cause a problem?

            Onto RE, and what sort of backup power do you think we need for when the wind doesn’t blow? It might time?

            Did you know that the SA power system has experienced 900 MW power swings in a 30 min period? That’s about 50% of installed wind capacity. Do you think that has an impact on frequency?

            The problem with renewables isn’t failure so much as it is variability.

          • Mark Roest 4 months ago

            Hello Ben, do you know what a battery is? Do you know that battery costs at the Gigafactory are or will soon be well under $US100 per kWh, and the levelized cost of storage will be under $2 cents per kwh?

          • RobertO 4 months ago

            Hi Mark Roest, Ben is just a coal troll.
            There is not such battery, there not such thing as PHES, and he knows all about humas (for ben that means human poo), there is not such thing as FC (they do not exist)
            None of these things can supply his favorite “Baseload” other than Hydro
            Message for Ben, I believe somebody on this site call you a deceptive person (defined as a person whom sets out to deceive). Your on the wrong wed site mate, go away, your wasting everybody time deliberately.

          • Ben 4 months ago

            Mate, if you can’t engage civilly you should not engage at all. If you opened your eyes beyond your ingrained beliefs you might learn something.

          • Ben 4 months ago

            Hi Mark, pretty sure batteries are non-renewable chemical storage – close enough?

            I’m not sure what a Gigafactory is but it sounds cool I suppose, and I’ll take your word on the figures, but I think you have a typo – $2 cents?

            Questions for you then: how many kWh do you think is necessary, what efficiency are the batteries, what is the energy cost to create a battery, how long do they last, and what will you charge them with?

          • Phil NSW 4 months ago

            Reread the report Ben. You statement is so wrong.

          • Ben 4 months ago

            Hi Phil, I quoted the report. Over to you.

      • Joe 4 months ago

        Rod, the TREND line with ‘Ben’ is the Trolli Trend line. He is posting his usual silly nonsense to wind up all the Renew Economy readers.

        • MaxG 4 months ago

          This must the one that is marked in my feed as “This user has been blocked”. :))
          I am not even seeing his — the Urban Dictionary calls it sh!t spewing.

          • Joe 4 months ago

            Yes, he, ‘The Trolli’ is back….under the monikers of ‘Ben’, ‘Dee Vee’, ‘C Wilkins’ and the others I’ve forgotten now.

    • lin 4 months ago

      The last 3 years global temperature anomaly figures from “GISS Surface Temperature Analysis” are significantly higher than anything for the past 140 years, and appear to be an acceleration in warming after an uninterrupted 60 year warming trend. “Biggest two year drop” could be considered a bit misleading given 2017 was the second hottest year on record and 2015 the third hottest.

    • Giles 4 months ago

      The ESB has made it very clear: They do not expect the reliability obligation to be triggered in the next decade. Deputy chair and chief designer Clare Savage has said this on several occasions, as have the others. Yes, there are issues with transition to high renewables. But reliability problems? No. Otherwise the obligation would be triggered. If not satisfied, then check out ESOO last year – no breach of standard forecast for next decade. Risk reduced from 0.00002 per cent to 0.00000001 per cent thanks to new renewables.

      • Ben 4 months ago

        Hi Giles, if the “reliability obligation” was a thing in use now then it might be worth mentioning it, but since that function is part of the still to be implemented NEG, and only deals with future shortfalls in generation, I don’t think it applies here.

        The Dec17 ESB report, page 27, is clear enough about reliability. As are reports from all other organisations with a stake in the power system. Except The Australia Institute, they don’t mention it.

    • john 4 months ago

      You have to be kidding me you put up 2 years and that is guidance?

      Mate let me explain a little Science, it has used to take 10,000 years to raise the Average Temperature over the Earth by 1 Degree Celsius on the historical record.

      We have manage to do this in 100 years !!!!!

      Do you see the connection ?

      There is No other connection that the idiotic way mankind has put into the system his waste products there is no other explanation.
      No it is no Volcanoes no it is not under the ocean volcanoes no it is not what other idiot stuff your WUWT has told you.
      It is you and I old mate.

      The earth is locked into a higher average temperature situation.
      In the tropics it will mean sweet fanny atoms.
      However most people do not live there so you will see larger rain falls over a shorter period. High temps Low temps because of the larger variability caused.
      To grow staple food like wheat for instance.
      With higher temps it produces lower nutriment.

      Is this honestly what you want?
      With the average temp for Earth going higher we will suffer.
      More intense Cyclonic disturbances larger rain fall over a shorter period longer droughts.
      You and I do not want to see this happening frankly.

      I do not wish you any disrespect but no 2 years of data means not exactly much.

    • solarguy 4 months ago

      Christ knows I’m so sick and tired of idiots like you Ben…. so on ya bike and don’t come back………. that’s what I suggest to you!

      • Ben 4 months ago

        Lol, naked aggression. How about you leave?

        • Barri Mundee 4 months ago

          Just another troll who pops up from time to time under different names to mislead and bait; nothing of substance, just here to try to derail discussion.

        • solarguy 4 months ago

          If we were in front of each other coward, I could give you a lesson in naked aggression, then you would crawl away to mummy troll.

          • Ben 4 months ago

            Apologies to the other readers, I know I shouldn’t but…

            Solarguy, are you in a union? You seem like the type!

          • solarguy 4 months ago

            I’m a hard working business owner and you’re a fool.

          • Joe 4 months ago

            We know what Union you in…The Trolli Union…just go away.

          • Joe 4 months ago

            Hi my solarman, cool it friend . We all know what game Trolli Benny boyo is playing here.

          • solarguy 4 months ago

            Solarguy bad. Lol.

    • Phil NSW 4 months ago

      Ben
      Please go back and reread the NASA report. You statements are not the reports findings. More importantly look at the trend over the last 150 years shown in the report. I have pointed this problem out to you before. You would not accept my guidance previously. Now you have tried to use a report which clearly supports my earlier statements about continued global temperature increases. The report is clearly showing temperatures are on a continuing upward trend. Your own reference puts your statement in the trash can (yet again). Keep up the good work.

      • Ben 4 months ago

        Hi Phil, I didn’t quote a NASA report, just like over at the graphs. I quoted the ESB report.

        Minor detail I know, but you could st least try.

        • Phil NSW 4 months ago

          Hi Ben
          Thank you for the opportunity to demonstrate your errors again.
          To make sure we are referring to the same graph (produced by NASA) here is the reference:
          https://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/graphs/
          Refer to the second graph where the Y axis is Temperature Anomaly in degrees C.
          The drop for land is 0.10 and ocean 0.06 (only on water not ice) so if ocean is twice land the average would be -0.07C not -0.56C. More importantly look at the rolling average it is still increasing.
          The first graph shows the anomaly occurred between January and March only which must be considered only a seasonal issue.
          Once again no comment regarding the continual 150 year increase. Is that too tough to refute?
          Have you viewed the information supplied by Doug yet?

          • Ben 4 months ago

            Hi Phil, yes the long term average is slightly up. It would be stranger if it was dead flat, downright frightening if it was going down.

            The temperature has been trending down for the last two years, but emissions are going up.

            Seems like temperature goes up and down even as CO2 just goes up. Almost as if the two are not closely linked…

            That Paris agreement should make a real impact by taking $100bn per year out of western civilisation, as carbon taxes and emissions reduction schemes also make their presence felt by closing down industry and manufacturing in the west and sending it where energy costs are very low, powered by coal. But it has no impact on emissions, just economies. I guess you could call it the great equalisation – isn’t that what the UN wants and the progressive left are sjsveting over? The west must pay for its sins by going into poverty? So we are forced into capitulating to a single global government? So there will be no borders, no sovereign nations, one currency, one language?

            If I was a conspiracy nutter that’s what I would think. But I’m not.

            I just don’t think CO2 at 400ppmis the primary influence on the planets temperature. As shown by your statement – seasons have greater effect.

            You might try reading stuff occasionally that doesn’t endorse your groupthink.

          • Peter Lyons 4 months ago

            Ben, what you “think” and what a vast body of reputable science – and all the world’s science academies – have observed about persistent warming, are two vastly different things. And do you come from the Alan Jones “400 ppm is nothing” school of thought? As for coal, you like it…I get that. But what would you have humanity do in 100, 250 or 1000 years when it does run out – as it surely will one day? Much as it sticks in your craw, renewables will be needed, so let’s get on with it anyway.

          • Ben 4 months ago

            Hi Peter, so many assumptions! But you have assumptions of your own, namely that “renewables are needed”.

            Needed for what? If it’s to reduce emissions, then nuclear can and does do it better.

            But whatever, I’m not anti-renewables, I just don’t like ideological non-factual lobbying by vested interests.

            I think a system that doesn’t preference any technology would be better, don’t you?

          • Phil NSW 4 months ago

            Hmm Ben. You failed to correct your interpretation of the data once it was demonstrated to be wrong. You change the topic. I never said seasons have greater effects. I repeat I said
            “The first graph shows the anomaly occurred between January and March only which must be considered only a seasonal issue.”
            Get it right.
            Publicly state coal power in Australia is cheaper than solar please so we can all have a laugh.

  2. DJR96 4 months ago

    The LNP has a real problem here. There is quite a disconnect between the hierarchy (in particular those that work on various policy committees) and the grassroots membership.
    The broader conservative membership really don’t have a clue on energy issues and simply lap up and spout what the vocal coal mouthpiece pollies feed them. Abbott, Kelly, Canavan, Joyce, McCormack et al.
    And the senior hierarchy have been advised better on the real state of play in energy, but won’t go on an education drive to inform the broader membership. Fear of losing support I guess. Trouble is, by allowing the whole party to veer so far off track from the realities of energy, they risk becoming as derailed as a coal train….. of its rails!

    Officially, the LNP is technology neutral.
    And just because it’s members passed resolutions at their convention supporting new coal, DOES NOT mean the party will actually go ahead with it. They’ve been told many times that there is no chance of any new coal-fired generation.

    The NEG was only ever designed as a tool to keep the conservative wing content and unified with the rest of the party. Obviously it was never to have any real bight into emissions etc. Quite frankly, I hope Abbott et al do walk the floor and it gets sunk. Wipe the floor and they can start again while allowing the existing measures continue.

    • MaxG 4 months ago

      I am an optimist by nature and trade, but this (your post) is beyond optimistic. 🙂
      Maybe there is the odd LNP member who has a brain; but the way party politics works, they never make it into a position to actually change anything. The LNP are wreckers; in the past, at present, and in the future. In my book unelectable for anyone caring about his/her fellow (wo)man.

  3. DevMac 4 months ago

    It’s really hard to understand how the Coalition have gained a reputation as ‘economically responsible’. The economy will be a lot brighter if we can embrace existing (not even future technology) proven technology, and wind and solar are already proven technologies.

    Choosing the support coal, is choosing to support coming second – at best.

    Choosing to support coal is akin to choosing to support analogue television. The mere passage of time will prove you wrong, and you’ll have to adapt eventually, and by the time you’ve adapted you’ll be behind the 8-ball.

    Morons, playing politics to lose.

    • RobertO 4 months ago

      Hi DevMac, it all spin and shiredes, we tell you what we think you want to hear as our support of the murdock rags cause they are part of “Big Business”
      Just a simple (rag lie) story like “Every LGC is valued at $80 each so RE is both subsidized and expensive”, it’s cost Australian $60 Billion (or what every they claim when the truth is nearly all LGC get given to the retailer for $0.00)

    • MaxG 4 months ago

      Easy. Ask the people who vote for them.
      AU is not even second best; I am sorry to say it, but even Howard attested to our great education system as the best, and in a quieter voice he added, in the third world category.

  4. howardpatr 4 months ago

    The LNP turns its back on wind, solar, (and distributed pumped hydro) as it turned its back on Australian farmers and the National Farmers Federation President Fiona Simpson – as the LNP would likely say; what would she know she is only a woman.

    Hypocrite Turnbull will again forget his 2009 pledge to not lead a party as committed as him to climate change and just tag along with the Monash Forum – he might even join them for prayers.

    • solarguy 4 months ago

      Please stop referring to these morons as the Monash Forum, it’s the moron forum at the best, it just gives them creedance they don’t deserve and sully’s the great General’s legacy.

      • rob 4 months ago

        soz @[email protected]_ta4dKzTJUU:disqus but monash was no great general…. his troops were!

        • solarguy 4 months ago

          Monash was indeed a great General, clearly you don’t know history. He was instrumental in ending the war sooner than thought possible, by the Brits and the Yanks. His troops were of course excellent.

          Explain this [email protected] caper.

          • Hettie 4 months ago

            Soz is a rather infantile contraction of “sorry.”

          • solarguy 4 months ago

            Thanks for that Hettie. He seems rather purile.

    • RobertO 4 months ago

      Hi howardpatr, I have three name that are better suit to that group.

      I call them the coal ash group
      I call them the Right Wing Nut Jobs (shorten to RWNJ’s)
      I call them the JACKASSES group

    • Catprog 4 months ago

      Technically I don’t think he forgot the pledge.

      Now he is just as committed to climate change as the LNP (I.E not at all.)

  5. Cooma Doug 4 months ago

    At the top levels in AMEC and AEMO, there is agreement 100% that building new coal gens is the worst possible step to take.
    Virtually none of the new technologies of load management
    will be in synergy with large base load coal. If a new coal station is commissioned any time after 2020 it will only run at a loss.
    The science of climate and temperature have nothing to do with the financisl realities.

    • Hettie 4 months ago

      Doug, what is needed here is a good look at AEMO’s Integrated System Plan. What has happened to it? I firmly believe that when ISP is compared and contrasted to NEG, it will be game over for NEG, but where is ISP???

      • Cooma Doug 4 months ago

        Because of the waffling on of our political circus it is not possible to allign an ISP to a market that has no certainty.
        The practical requirements and science for 100% renewables is in town but the politics is not.
        Having said all this, it is certain despite the politics, that coal doesnt have a future. If the government builds coal power stations I will be hanging up my hat, shrug the shoulders and stop looking.

        Still I must admit that it might happen. We do a lot of stupid stuff. Driving to Sydney on Friday I noticed that more than 9 of each 10 cars had just one person/driver. Perhaps that is evan more stupid than coal generators.

        • john 4 months ago

          Doug there will not be built a new Shiny Coal Powered Generator especially with any idea of putting CO2 into the ground.
          Rest easy even with out sequestration of emitted CO2 it is not going to happen.
          Because as you know it is not able to be able to turn a dollar on the investment.
          No bank will finance it.
          It has no future.
          What is needed as every investigation has shown is a lot of PHES a lot of Solar a lot of Wind a lot of Solar and Storage all over the Network and I believe this is going to happen.
          Because as you know and are knowledgeable i think you are on the money.

          • RobertO 4 months ago

            Hi John, Sorry but you could be wrong. Next election and we vote COALition back in, we also voted to give them control in the Senate. The first job is to pass legislation to build a new coal power station, the second job is to pass legislation to ban protest against the new coal power station. The Gov then sign a new power purchase agreement and it all now in law.

            If Britain can do it for Hinkley Point Nuclear Power Station then what to stop Australian Pollies doing?

            https://www.theguardian.com

            It’s the Law that matters (Legislation not economics of it).

          • MaxG 4 months ago

            You are so right, you may not even know it.
            What I have been warning about for quite some time. Do not underestimate believers… neither common sense nor science will prevail.

          • Hettie 4 months ago

            Too many of the Coalition’s old “believers” are hurting now, and know that their pain is caused by Coalition government actions.
            Yes, there are many “rusted on” unthinking voters, who steadfastly refuse to engage their brains, but there are growing numbers of voters who stayed at school past the age of 14, who do think.
            The Marriage Equality Survey saw huge numbers of young people enrol to vote, and very few of them will vote for the Coalition. As most of the big polls depend largely on landlines, and the under 40s are now virtually all mobile only, the polls do not really have representative samples.
            The young are far more invested in preserving the planet than older voters. They are directly affected by rising uni fees and harsher student loan repayment regimes, by the failures of privatisation of vocational training, by draconian conditions to receiving Newstart, and probably more issues too.
            Women are angry at the funding cuts to services for those affected by domeestic violence, by the cuts to penalty rates, which disproportionately affect women, and by the reduction in hours of early education available to children of women who’ve whatever reason do not have paid work.
            So there are huge swathes of voters who have good reason to vote against the Coalition, and who know that Labor’s promised tax cut for them is double the Coalition offering.
            I think we can be confident that there WILL be a change of government. But also that the bastardy will hold on as long as they can.

          • MaxG 4 months ago

            I certainly hope you are right… which I also said before the SA election — but did not really believe, with reasoning based on my posts elsewhere on this forum.
            A few voters coming to their senses, great; though it is the tip of the iceberg. What lingers underneath is politicians in power manufacture crisis (e.g. energy crisis, immigrant crisis, terrorist crisis) and manipulate the resultant emotion, to distract from their inability or unwillingness to reform (e.g. Trumpism). Politicians instruct their citizens to experience elation and outrage at short intervals, drowning the future in the present. Politicians use technology (Twitter or the corporate press) to transmit political fiction, deny truth and seek to reduce life to spectacle and feeling.
            I understand this is a ‘renewable energy forum’, and I struggle most of the time to focus on these little surface issues, which are all connected once scratching the surface, revealing a (what I call) dying democracy.
            I agree with what you said, but looking at my own kids, they would not understand a word you’ve said, yet grew up in a ‘critical thinking’ household. OK, they probably understand what you’re saying, but not what it means and even less why it is so… and have no interest to change a thing (going on with their consumerist life), let alone who to vote for those who could change (what they don’t know needs changing). :)) I give up…

          • Hettie 4 months ago

            I do take your point about the SA election, and yet, the overall majority there voted Labor. Plus, there is no non Murdoch newspaper in SA, and retail power prices there remain high, despite the fall in the wholesale price.
            State issues are not always in line with Federal issues.
            Just 2.5 weeks to go to the 5 by-elections. Then we will get a good look at how voter sentiment really runs. Only Longman and ? Braddon with Liberal candidates running, but still a good indication.

          • MaxG 4 months ago

            Don’t be so sure. The government will finance it if it wants to. You will see a coal burner being built when the same idiots regain power.

        • Gyrogordini 4 months ago

          “We do a lot of stupid stuff. Driving to Sydney on Friday I noticed that more than 9 of each 10 cars had just one person/driver.”
          Did you also notice how inefficient most of those one passenger vehicles are, as well? Fuel is too cheap, the vehicles are way bigger than they need to be and there is a complete vacuum at Federal (and at least NSW government) levels about encouraging the adoption of Euro6, and more importantly, electric vehicles.

          • john 4 months ago

            Just remember in Aus there are no regulations on vehicles emissions.
            The country is a joke for every manufacturer dump your old rubbish there they will not know.

          • Ralph Buttigieg 4 months ago

            I like to thank the people here for their helping the Liberal Party. Please continue to promote more expensive cars and fuel.
            thanks

          • solarguy 4 months ago

            Fuel to cheap, don’t be bloody silly!

          • MaxG 4 months ago

            It is too cheap to (force) push the change to EVs.
            And I bet some people are wary of the future change in energy costs for EVs, when the neoliberals announce that the electricity cost has to increase due to all this bloody EVs; and loss of excise and all… wait for it. This Liar & Numnuts Party is capable of acts of trumian proportions… and don’t forget at least 40%+ percent are hard-core supporters of said party.

          • Joe 4 months ago

            Sorry my Solarman but I’m with Gyro on this one, he is spot on in what he says. Also when Australia sells over 1 million new ICE vehicles year after year after year then it must also say something about the level of fuel prices.

          • solarguy 4 months ago

            Ok, Joe think of this. I’m paying $1.54/ lt for diesel, to fill 90lt tank costs me $138.

            To charge 100kwh battery @ 13c/kwh (OFF PEAK) =$13.

            Bring on EV’s, I say.

          • RobertO 4 months ago

            Hi solarguy, that cheap, the school where I volunteer paid $2.17 per litre and we are in the geographical centre of Sydney. I hit the roof over that because just down the road I was buying it for $1.43 per litre, although the prices were any where from about $1.40 to $1.55 even the fuel discounts were $0.04 at some sites and $0.08 cents at others and some are same suppliers. I now supply diesel for most of the macherney at the school (Lawn Mower, Bobcat and Excavator and Cherry Picker)
            Cost Price was $1.54 per Litre
            add Delivery Fee 10% new price $1.694
            Add Saturday Fee 10% new price $1.8634
            Add GST fee 10% new price $2.04974 round up to $2.05
            Add Card Fee (Diners Card) 6% new price $2.17

            I often transport diesel and 200 litres in normal. The school gets the Fossil Fuel rebate on these machines as we have vehicles over 10 tons (our Big truck Hino 1827) is on it’s way to mid north coast, due about 1 hr time with a crew (about 50 people) following to build a new building community centre / church. I sick so they will not let me go. The year 10 kids go Thursday and they are due back a week later. The builders may stay longer to complete the project.

          • Joe 4 months ago

            I’m with you on the EV’s.

          • Francis Young 4 months ago

            If 90L of diesel gets you 900 km, it costs you 15.3c/km
            100 KWh charge at $13 might get you 150km, ie 9c/km
            But you need to buy and install the charging unit at your home and factor in the cost of charges on-peak and away from home.
            Only you can decide whether the maths works for you.
            There is no case for taxpayers to pay for it, indeed, there is a case for taxing the charging to pay for roads like the fuel excise does.

          • Ren Stimpy 4 months ago

            Except that future taxpayers will pay trillions for climate change remediation measures and prevention infrastructure.

          • Francis Young 4 months ago

            Our chief scientist has said that if Australia reduced our emissions to zero overnight, it would make no discernible difference to global temperatures at the end of the century. Stick to the science, will you. 🙂 That is not a license to pollute, but your statement is simply not factual.

          • Mike Westerman 4 months ago

            Francis – that is a particularly weak argument. If I shot you, it would make no difference to the population of your suburb, let alone Australia or the world. But there is no doubt that allowing everyone to shoot their neighbour, on the basis of precedent and your argument, would quickly devolve into a desperate and dangerous world. Australia is looked to in the region as a leader who has influence, but hypocrites have no legitimacy. Australia is wealthy enough not only to decarbonise but in doing so to become a leader in carbon free industrial processes, simply because we are going to have the ability to have vast carbon free energy sources. It’s dumb not to do so.

          • Hettie 4 months ago

            Sounds like you’re sorely tempted, Mike.
            Can’t blame you.
            😁

          • Ren Stimpy 4 months ago

            If Australia reduced our emissions to zero overnight, it would make no discernable diffence to global temperatures at the end of the century.

            Now substitute any of the following countries for Australia in your sentence:

            Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Indonesia, Iran, Italy, Mexico, South Africa, South Korea, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, UK

            Each of those countries’ emissions are around the same percentage as Australia.

            The total emissions of the above countries (including Australia) is 20% of global emissions. If all these countries decided to boycott the process, then every country with a lower per-country emissions percentage would also decide to boycott the process (that’s 170 countries more totalling a further 20% of global emissions).

            All countries at around same individual percentage as Australia, or less, together total 40% of the world’s emissions.

            You’re also paraphrasing Finkel out of context. He wasn’t advocating for Australia to cease all action on emissions, and he went on to compare emission reduction efforts to participation in elections

            If everybody took the attitude that their vote doesn’t count and no one voted we wouldn’t have a democracy.
            –Alan Finkel

          • Hettie 4 months ago

            Great post, Ren. Well done!

          • Joe 4 months ago

            Frannie above, he had a good teacher in the art of ‘selective part quoting’. The Abbott / LNP/ Rupe and newsrags did it in 2013 with the ‘Carbon Tax’ lie….they all never quote in FULL the words of Julia Gillard and Labor’s promise of The Emissions Trading Scheme.

          • Hettie 4 months ago

            Perhaps, being such barefaced liars themselves, the notion that any one, let alone a woman, might be honest, is quite intolerable. Certainly incomprehensible.

          • Ren Stimpy 4 months ago

            Thanks Hettie.

          • Ben 4 months ago

            This is actually two arguments:

            1. If all 1% countries reduced emissions then targets would be met

            2. If all 1% countries reduced emissions, then other countries will follow

            Since the context is in terms of the Paris agreement, it should be noted that the main aim of the Paris agreement is to remove $100bn per year from advanced economies and distribute it to developing economies, including China and India, two of the top three largest polluters.

            1. The statement sounds true but it is nonsensical since it is a practical non-reality. Analogy: lead can be turned into gold is technically true, but costs more than the gold is worth. You may argue, “but the cost of climate change is astronomical so any cost to mitigate the consequences is less than the final cost of climate change”. If you do think that, then the argument has to be made that this is true. And then you need to prove three things: first that humans are the primary cause of warming, second that the changes are reversible and controllable, thirdly that humans are capable of making the necessary changes.

            2. Not a great argument, pure supposition, perfect for the Hitchens’ Razor – that which can be stated without evidence can be rejected without evidence. And of course you haven’t mentioned China and India, which I presume would continue to increase emissions, thereby offsetting gains made in other countries.

            And the Finkel quote, in context, is linked below.

            http://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/search/display/display.w3p;db=COMMITTEES;id=committees%2Festimate%2Fe3ddf88b-3e9c-4546-9d90-8f646689a98c%2F0003;page=0;query=(Dataset%3Acommsen,commrep,commjnt,estimate,commbill%20SearchCategory_Phrase%3A%22committees%22)%20Dataset_Phrase%3A%22estimate%22;rec=11

            Senator IAN MACDONALD: China—with all due respect to the Chinese, I love them—talk a lot about climate change but they do very little. They open a new coal-fired power station each week. Is India a signatory to Paris?

            Dr Finkel : They are. I am not sure about India, but China in particular has a different set of commitments to what the OECD countries and Australia have made.

            Senator IAN MACDONALD: The concern I always have is that you have China, India and the United States, all, in my terminology, luke-warm towards cutting emissions. How does that impact on the changing climate of the world if, as people say, carbon emissions are the cause of the changing climate?

            Dr Finkel : It is a critically important potential impact. If China and India, as the two biggest emitters, do not do their fair share towards cutting their emissions, then globally we will not make anything like the progress that it is accepted that we need to make. With China, and it is the same with India, you have to be careful what you look at. It is absolutely true that they are continuing to open a lot of coal stations, but the rate at which they are opening them is now far below what they were projecting five or 10 years ago would be the rate of opening of coal stations.

            Senator IAN MACDONALD: What they were projecting or what they were doing?

            Dr Finkel : Both. They were really busily opening coal stations. Their absolute rate of opening the wind and solar is huge, but it is not nearly enough to meet their needs, because they are society with growing demand.

            Senator IAN MACDONALD: But they keep increasing their emissions.

            Dr Finkel : Correct. They are committed to reducing their emissions, but not until about 2030.

            Senator IAN MACDONALD: Exactly. In Australia, we emit less than 1.3 per cent of the world’s carbon emissions.

            Dr Finkel : About that.

            Senator IAN MACDONALD: If we were to reduce the world’s emissions of carbon by 1.3 per cent, what impact would that make on the changing climate of the world?

            Dr Finkel : I will give you two answers to that. One will be a little facetious—I apologise in advance. The more serious one we are a well-respected country and we have to show leadership—

            Senator IAN MACDONALD: That is really not answering my question.

            Dr Finkel : alongside the other countries in the OECD, the other developed countries. If we walk away and resile from our commitment, it is a bad signal that could be like America walking away from its commitment.

            Senator IAN MACDONALD: That is not my question.

            Dr Finkel : In terms of the need for us to worry about our tiny contribution—I apologise—it is a little bit like voting. Does your vote count in an election? Does my vote count in an election? No, it does not, but if everyone took the attitude that their vote does not count and no-one voted, we would not have a democracy.

            Senator IAN MACDONALD: You are entering into an argument which I am not having. I did not put those propositions to you. I simply asked a question: if we reduce the world’s carbon emissions by 1.3 per cent, what impact would that have on the changing climate of the world?

            Dr Finkel : Virtually nothing.

          • Mike Westerman 4 months ago

            A typically lazy approach to the issue by Macdonald. As Dr Finkel says of democracy, it is not the appropriate test. If we shot 1% of the Australian population at the level of global uses of resources the impact would be virtually nothing, but there is no doubt the death of 230,000 people would be considered important by those affected. $100B is virtually nothing in any measure of international transfers.

          • Ben 4 months ago

            Well, the question by Ian MacDonald wasn’t “should we” make a change, it was “what would that change do”. And Dr FInkel’s answer is accurate.
            Your argument is another example of conflating several ideas, these are:
            1. reducing emissions only counts if the majority does it together – analogous to voting in a democracy
            2. emissions reduction of 1% is felt by 1% of population
            So, voting:
            – if you test this analogy in context of global emissions, then Australia gets 1.3 votes, China gets 30 votes, US gets 15, EU gets 9, India gets 7, Russia gets 5 – and then China and India and everybody else get to do their own thing anyway, it’s not a democracy because there is no common rules, no common system and not everybody wants the same outcome. A democracy implies rules and consequences for breaking the rules, but there are no police in this scenario.
            So, shooting people (:))
            – this analogy assumes that a global reduction of 1% emissions would be felt by 1% of the population – not so, as stated by Finkel.
            Here is an analogy of mine that might be more appropriate.
            – consider a street with houses, all run from the same water tank, which has a limited capacity
            – house A consumes 10,000 litres of water per day
            – house B consumes 250 litres per day
            – the water tank may run out of water sometime in the future, around the year 2100, but that is hotly disputed, but predicted by many reputable scientists
            – house A is not expected to reduce consumption any time soon, and several other houses are expected to increase their water consumption also
            – does house B spend maximum effort to reduce water consumption, at great cost, or does house B naturally improve water efficiency over time while spending more effort on learning ways of living with less water, thus being able to share that knowledge and experience with the other houses in the street

          • Mike Westerman 4 months ago

            And my response was that McD was lazy in asking a question where he would only accept a pared down context. As my analogy demonstrates, context is everything. “Virtually nothing” means virtually nothing if the context is narrow enough. If a 1.3% change was the straw that broke the camel’s back it may seem to be virtually nothing. Furthermore, human relations whether local and global have not popped out of a vacuum – they are the result of our evolution and millennia of tuning enabling us by and large to walk down the street without feeling the need to devour each other. If house B in your analogy is only using 250 L/day because it was rich enough to condense water out of the atmosphere, whereas house A has 85 residents, 25 of whom are porpoises, then of course we would take a different view.

          • RobertO 4 months ago

            Hi Mike Westerman, I have blocked ben on the grounds that I find his deceptive use of words well out of context which in my book is deceitful. He claimed to be an engineer but the only fitting that I can work out is that he is a “Control Room Engineer” I have work most of my life with all sorts of engineers, and he is the first one that has me stumped.

          • Mike Westerman 4 months ago

            As interesting is why the union hating LNP should be supporting the most unionised industrial sectors (coal mining and thermal power) while attacked the most free market (solar and wind). Or making government investments in the biggest non-thermal generation facility in recent history.

            It’s not at all surprising that investors are a bit over the cat fighting and inconsistency. All the while, all forms of thermal power are increasing in cost while renewables are decreasing. There is one direction things are going, and there seems little merit in prolonging the agony of change except to make sure the vulnerable don’t get left behind (but then that’s quite a socialist idea, a bit like helping farmers weather the constantly changing weather…).

          • Ren Stimpy 4 months ago

            The 40% (across the majority number of voters on this issue) who have signed commitments for emission reductions and are prepared to stick to them is easily enough to swing an election.

          • Ren Stimpy 4 months ago

            Your interpretation is wrong – you’re approaching the horse from the wrong end. You’re missing the fact that all 15 of those 1-2% countries are ALREADY signatories to the Paris agreement, as are 170 countries with lower emissions.

            This is actually the two arguments:

            1. If all the 1-2% countries (including Australia) stopped reducing emissions, reductions would fall short of the Paris targets by 20%

            2. If all the sub-1% countries stopped reducing emissions, which they would likely do if the above 1-2% group stopped, reductions would fall short of the Paris targets by a further 20%

            Now have a look at the numbers. Australia emits 550 million tonnes of CO2e each year. That is at least 45 billion tonnes of CO2e Australia will put into the atmosphere between now and the end of the century unless we stick to our reduction targets.

            BTW climate change is not reversible. The aim of Paris is to limit the damage.

          • Joe 4 months ago

            Frannie, please stick to FACTS and stop your ( and the Lying Nasty Party ) ‘selective part quoting’ of Dr Alan Finkel. Please supply the FULL quote of what Dr Alan Finkel actually said. Just like Abbott/ LNP/ Rupert and Newsrags / Radio Shock Dickheads did in 2013 in ‘selective part quoting’ of Julia Gillard and Labor’s Emissions Trading Scheme promise, you are blatantly misrepresenting what Dr Alan Finkel said.

          • Giles 4 months ago

            Think you will find the 100kWh will get you closer to 600kms rather than 150km. that makes is 2.2c/km.

          • solarguy 4 months ago

            Thanks for stealing my thunder Giles. But of course you are correct.

          • solarguy 4 months ago

            Frank, assumptions are the mother of all f%$k ups. I can only just squeeze 800km out the Pajero with hwy driving.

            Why would you think tax payers would pay?

          • Alexander Hromas 4 months ago

            All of the EV’s come with their own charging point. I installed a 15 amp outlet in my garage to supply my Mitsubishi PEHV for $500 and get 50km range for $2.10 the same would cost about $5 if I used petrol. Moreover I produce virtually no exhaust gas pollution in Sydney a huge saving in medical costs and loss of productivity to the community. This benefit alone exceeds my petrol excise tax

          • Hettie 4 months ago

            I do love to see idiots confounded by simple facts and hard numbers.
            Well said.

          • Miles Harding 4 months ago

            Francis, the actual numbers are 540km from 100kwh in a Tesla S 100D, making the ‘fuel’ expense more like 2.6 cents per km (1/5 that of diesel).
            Even at the typical highway rate (DC fast chargers) of $0.40 per kwh, the ‘fuel’ cost for the 100D is only about 7.5 cents per km.

            The Tesla Model 3 is about 3/4 of this and the Renault Zoe slightly less again.

            The ‘ultimate’ is something like the UNSW Sunswift, which will go about 3,000km on 100kwh of energy!

      • RobertO 4 months ago

        Hi Hettie, condoleances on the pet. I suspect that the ISP is still being worked on. No matter what it comes out with there are going to be some really upset pollies, and some very happy pollies, and then the rest of the pollies. I wonder how long Audrey has left in her current job, will the upset pollies call for her head if they can not bury the ISP somehow. Lies and political spin win elections in this country (and I trust then implicitly for their honesty).

        • Hettie 4 months ago

          Thank you.

  6. Radbug 4 months ago

    Words are bullets. There are two Queenslands, the South East, and the rest. The South East is going ahead by leaps and bounds. The rest of Queensland is stagnating. The ALP owns the South East, the LNP owns the rest of QLD. That was the raison d’etre for the Queensland Liberal Party. The LNP isn’t the Coalition, it’s the Nationals by another name. That’s why the LNP has not and will not win in the South East consistently. It may win from time to time and that’s all. The South East is pro-renewables, the rest is anti-renewables. As Brisbane’s population grows and grows, the ALP will become more & more deeply entrenched in South East Queensland, and thus, in government. I predict that the more the LNP promotes coal-fired power, the less likely Susan Lamb will lose the upcoming by-election in Longman.

    • john 4 months ago

      Look at the broader scale we need people to be able to be representatives who look after not only you but every one.

  7. john 4 months ago

    It is pathetic.
    We have a situation where the leaders of the country are removed from reality.
    Idiotically hatred of new technology is anathema to the people who live in the 2000’s this is not exactly good.
    These is pathetic.
    The world is actually in the 2018 plus areas and yes people wish to move on and try to fix up what you gave us in the 1950’s, but i do not think this will happen.

  8. Robert Westinghouse 4 months ago

    Even Gran does not understand: Coal Power Stations, Billions of $ on Drones, Billions of $ on Weaponizing the country, but nothing on Pollution, nothing on Schools and nothing on Health. The government are either IDIOTS or CORRUPT….she is spending my inheritance on PV and batteries….hope she can give the finger to BIG POWER….

  9. Ian 4 months ago

    Dark times ahead, for some reason the coal lobby is extremely powerful, the LNP might be fully in their pocket but the ALP seem to be wilting roses. Hinkley here we come!

    • Chris Fraser 4 months ago

      Dare I say it but there would be a full-on energy crisis before they could find time to build a Hinkley. They are death to political regimes …

    • IT67 4 months ago

      By the time they hit the inevitable wall of reality and even try to start planning a Hinkley equivalent (3,200MW) the annual installation rate of solar will be far outstripping the capacity of any nuclear plant they could (perhaps) deliver ten years later.

      The accountants would have to fiddle the books beyond belief to make the cost / benefit / NPV sums balance in any shape, size or form.

      Even in today’s market the sums simply don’t add up – unless of course you simply take the RE costs from 2012 and factor in blatant lies of course 😛

      • RobertO 4 months ago

        Hi IT67, it even simpler than that. Nothing matters if it signed into Law (for a new Coal Power station). If they also sign into Law your right to protest ,you can be arrested and charged with (what ever perceived security issue they chose to call it). The last issue is they then sign off on the contracts to build and supply electricity.

        In Hinkley C Nuclear Power station the supply deal that includes inflation costs for the 40 odd years ( if i understand correctly the power is 92.5 per MWhr british pounds in 2012 and will rise with inflation and in 2048 it will be worth 148 british pounds per MWhr (note my numbers may be out as inflation changes and my calculations are hopeless). The current RE price in Britain is about 53 per MWhr in british pounds and is still falling.

        Australian Taxpayers (and any consumers of electricity) would pay for this if the COALition get into a position to do it (it’s about the LAW not about the economics, they do not matter and neither will the protesters, as we all know “The Law is an Ass”

  10. MaxG 4 months ago

    The problem sits far deeper as most would even dare to realise … George Orwell in “1984”: democracy is bludgeoned into submission by totalitarian brutality. — Think about this for a moment.
    This is not about anything in the article; who, what, LNP, blah… the issue is democracy is dying; in most democracies the people are bystanders most of the time. They watch on as political decisions are taken on their behalf by elected representatives who then ask for their assent at election time. Another anti-democratic trend out there that has embedded itself deeply in politics, and that we scarcely even notice anymore: The capture of democratic institutions by organised elites slowly hollow out politics, transforming it over time into a soulless substitute of democracy.
    Hidden types of power grabs in mature democracies is executive elevation or aggrandizement by a sitting government, whereby elected leaders, once in power, begin to attack democratic institutions like the press and civil society groups, bullying them into submission and slowly hollowing out democracy from the inside. Sounds familiar?
    E.g. Trump has made no secret of his hostility to core democratic institutions (the courts, EPA) — like Newmann in Qld, Hockey and Abbott; privatisation of public assetss marked the beginning of the end of democracy.
    You may read on this further at: https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2017/jun/21/privatizing-public-services-trump-democracy

    • shinytop 4 months ago

      +1. The laid back, apathetic approach by the Australian voting population to politics has very ably assisted the elite to gut our democracy, by the time they awaken the chains will be firmly locked in place. Back on topic, our energy/emissions policy directions are subject to world scrutiny & IMO if we continue down this path we will find sanctions applied, combined with extreme weather patterns that are becoming more evident with each passing year the consequences for our nation & its people are dire.

      • MaxG 4 months ago

        Thanks 🙂 what I raised is an issue with all western democracies; look how terrorism in a tea cup was used to enact a laws taking away basic human and democratic rights, perverted into anti-demonstration laws, etc.
        “back on topic” though understood, will not fix anything, as the ones who govern certainly won’t listen to anything on this site, and looking at what they are planning or stipulating to do is utter bull, yet has mainstream acceptance… if not, the guys would not be in power.

  11. Ralph Buttigieg 4 months ago

    I know Giles and other have a jolly good time demonizing the the LNP but what’s the position of the LNP opposition? The people who are the alternative government? Well they seem to rather like renewables.

    https://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/state-politics/deb-frecklington-gives-nod-to-green-energy-in-queensland/news-story/e31d5edf33de6c9c3a6861594bdd9e5b

    • Catprog 4 months ago

      From the article

      The Liberal National Party in Queensland – one of the key battlegrounds
      in the next federal election – has effectively turned its back on
      renewable energy technologies and emissions reductions, and called for
      new coal fired power stations to be built in the state.

      So are you saying that one part of the party is not following the other part?

      • Ralph Buttigieg 4 months ago

        Correct. The parliamentarians are not bound by some motion at a conference. Have a look at the link i provided to see the real policy.

    • MaxG 4 months ago

      Looking at society and democracy as a whole, both parties fail to address issues of the future, which is expected to be addressed by leaders worth their salt. It is called “strategy” in the face of uncertainty. Question around employment, basic income, free trade, the ponzi finance system (remember usury was prohibited for most of the time of human existence); distribution of wealth; and remember: A profit-driven system doesn’t mean we get more for our money – it means someone gets to make more money off of us.
      Anyway…

  12. Francis Young 4 months ago

    Great to see this commonsense from the LNP in Queensland, with its abundant coal and the grid already a sunk cost. It is pretty funny that Giles characterises 60MW Lakeland as a challenge to GW-scale HELE coal plants. He reminds me of the pastor in the musical version of War of the Worlds, who preaches a vast civilisation underground, only to reveal that his hole is only a few feet deep. He is correct, however, that large solar cannot be costed standalone, but must factor in the cost of storage if it is to be reliable when called upon. That is why a cost per MWh delivered is the only valid comparison between technology options for meeting the growing power needs of the country.

    • RobertO 4 months ago

      Hi Francis Young, Is it not more about costs to the Householder / Small Business whom are adding solar in droves and it only going to build more. Any power supply is going to face is competition and home batteries are going to drive their ability into the ground to deliver a profitable MWhr. Please note that I believe that it is profit that keeps a company in business (even Gov owned business can bear losses for so long before their master say “Enough is Enough”)

  13. RobertO 4 months ago

    Hi All, In lots of simple terms we as human being often turn to our ability to manufacture goods and services. How often do we find that if we make 1 off of something it costs us x dollars. On a larger scale say half a million units, we often get it at a much cheaper price. If we make a billion units the price often drops like a rock.

    In simple terms our pollies want 5 new power coal power station, would it be cheaper to buy a billion solar panels. We could install them as they arrive in the country so they would come online quicker. We could install them locally so we do not need extra transmission built.

    Our pollies want to spend taxpayer billions building coal power. Everybody pays both to build it, and then we pay to feed the coal for however long it runs for.

    When it comes to Solar panels sure everybody pays. Yes the taxpayer pick up a part of the costs, but that a one off payment as a contribution to the panel. The householder and small business pay most of the capital of system to be installed. They pay for all the maintenance.

    Solar power is no threat to coal power ability to produce power. Let me say that again “Solar Power is no threat to coal power ability to produce power.”

    In nice simple terms do we as Australians want to
    Spend billions on new coal and then more on feeding new coal as taxpayers and consumers.

    Or do we want to let Australians decide that they want to spend a little of the taxpayers money (one off capital contribution) and mostly their own money on panels

    I think Australian have spoken, they are adding solar panel daily.

    (Coal operates on an open wholesale market place where they can chose to sell power both on price and volume)

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