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Some South Australian farmers going fully diesel for electricity

Posted By Jo Nova On September 29, 2017 @ 1:22 am In Global Warming | Comments Disabled

Diesel generator.  Coupole d'Helfaut in 1944,

Maybe they’ll get one like this one? ;-) Circa 1934.*

Green management of the South Australian grid scores another big success for the environment:

SURGING power prices are pushing South Australian dairy farmers such as James and Robyn Mann to go off-grid.

The Manns’ electricity costs have more than doubled in five years, from about $200,000 per annum to $500,000.

Due to the high prices, the family will this summer switch to diesel power to run their 116-stand rotary dairy and 14 irrigation centre pivots at Wye in the lower south east of South Australia.

The Manns are among Australia’s top 10 dairy producers, in terms of volume, milking up to 2300 cows and producing 19-21 million litres annually.

If only South Australia had more “cheap” solar and wind power, their electricity might be as low cost as the coal-fired Victorians:

Their move comes as South Australia’s dairy lobby has calculated the state’s dairy farmers paid about 40 per cent more for power than their Victorian neighbours last season.

The Mann’s are definitely going diesel this summer, but may set up a mixed solar-diesel-battery plan in the long run:

“Its embryonic, but information we have is saying we could get a payback within five years of (setting up a system on-farm) not connected to the grid, a combination of solar, diesel and batteries.

Imagine how expensive your electricity has to be for a small diesel generator to be cheaper than mass produced coal power? This could be the first time in 130 years that people connected to coal turbines switch off to use their own small fossil fueled generators because it’s cheaper.

Another world first for South Australia. And possibly a mark of the grid saturation point of intermittent renewables.

h/t Keith S

*Electric generator ( diesel engine and alternator ) installed in the underground worksite of the Coupole d’Helfaut in 1944. Photo Vassil

Diesel generator.  Coupole d'Helfaut in 1944,

Maybe they’ll get one like this one? ;-) Circa 1934.*

Just for fun: This is a three cylinder Allen S47 engine made in 1935. See someone start one up here. According to one commenter they can generate 250Hp. Image: Andy Dingley

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