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Australian govt may dump renewables subsidies, testing, 1,2,3…

Minister Josh Frydenberg has just implied Australia might drop ongoing endless renewables subsidies (and thus dump the Finkel chief-”scientist” plan). He didn’t say that in so many words, but hinted at it, and will now wait to see how the idea goes down.

Soak in this reasoning — renewables are becoming so cost competitive they don’t need subsidies. He’s calling their bluff.  It’s like the announcement to sack climate scientists because “the science is settled”. Let’s take them at their word and follow that propaganda to its logical end:

The key message from Josh Frydenberg is that subsidies for renewable energy are coming to an end.

There is no Clean Energy Target in sight in Frydenberg’s plan for a new policy by the end of this year. The phrase does not get a single mention in his new speech on the way ahead.

In a key argument, the Energy Minister argues that the cost of building wind and solar power has more than halved in recent years.

He does not rule out more subsidies explicitly, but the clear suggestion is that renewable energy generators are now at a point where they can stand on their own two feet. This is exactly the message from Coalition backbenchers who are sceptical about the Renewable Energy Target and any CET to continue the subsidies after 2020.

 –  The Australian

Frydenberg is giving the industry what it asked for: “stability”:

The energy minister, Josh Frydenberg, says Australia’s electricity sector is looking for stability, “not necessarily” for handouts, in a signal the Turnbull government is poised to abandon the clean energy target.

In comments to an energy summit on Monday, Frydenberg pointed to the falling costs of renewable energy as one of the calculations in the government’s consideration of the clean energy target recommended by the chief scientist, Alan Finkel.   The Guardian

I don’t think they’re going to want this sort of stability. What they really want is “subsidy”.

This is not over yet:

When Turnbull was asked if the government had abandoned the Finkel hot favourite list, he played it both ways, ambiguously waffling about meeting Paris agreements while delivering reliable affordable energy which says exactly nothing. Write to your elected rep. Write to your newspaper editor. Write, ring, holler, don’t stop now. The renewables industry will be doing it like their next ski trip to the Swiss Alps depends on it.

Bluff meet reality:

We can measure the truth of the “competitiveness” by the outcry from the renewables industry lobbyists. How loud will be the squeal? At Reneweconomy.com, David Leitch, principal of ITK (whatever that is), puts in his best effort to scare the Coalition today declaring it is  Frydenberg’s election losing speech. “In our dreams”, say skeptics, this next election will be about energy policy like it was in 2013. Bring it on. We might see a 90 seat landslide again. Labor are running with their 50% renewables plan, death to Australian manufacturing.

Tellingly, Leitch’s first graph is about the cost of nasty storms in the US, because subsidies for windmills will stop droughts, floods and tornadoes. Yeah, baby. (Please keep reminding people. Please.)  He then talks share prices, gas prices, trading volumes and baseload futures. What he doesn’t graph are the countries which have lots of renewables and their electricity costs. I wonder why?

His reading of the implications of Frydenberg’s speech as the same as everyone else:

Mainstream media, specifically “The Australian Financial Review” and “The Australian” have taken the Federal Minister for “The Enviroment and Energy” speech to a conference today to state that the Government is  “set to dump clean energy target”.

Frydenberg reasons that the public won’t support climate change action if they have to pay too much for their bills:

Should reliability and affordability be compromised, public support for tackling climate change will quickly diminish and previous gains will be lost

How does Finkel justify more subsidies in a cost competitive industry?

Because “management”:

Finkel told the gathering a clean energy target was a framework allowing an orderly transition away from carbon-intensive power sources to low-emissions power sources.

“It remains a useful tool even if there is an extreme rate of reduction in the price of the new technologies,” Finkel said. “You need a managed transition.”

  The Guardian

So Finkel the chief scientist hath spoken on economic matters of energy policy and the answer is to manage the transition, which shows what a pointless position “Chief Scientist” is. He didn’t assess the scientific reasoning at all, and fails on economic basics. If renewables were competitive, the transition would manage itself. Who wouldn’t want solar panels and batteries if it really did cut the electricity bill in half? But solar still has subsidies, the payback time is long, uncertain, and there are horrid aftereffects making the whole grid unstable, driving out the cheapest baseload providers, and ultimately intermittent “cheap” electricity drives up the cost of electricity overall.

h/t Eric Worrall — See his take on it on WUWT.

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266 comments to Australian govt may dump renewables subsidies, testing, 1,2,3…

  • #
    Dennis

    The Abbott Government attempted to dump the RET and attached subsidies but the legislation was blocked in the Senate led by the Labor Green partnership. The Senate did however agree to cap the RET at the 23 per cent level set by the last Labor Government.

    I note that GetUp mischief makers often claim that PM Abbott is responsible for the 23 per cent RET. Typical of the leftist propaganda machine, his government agreed to the cap compromise so they are responsible. Forget their attempt to dump the lot.

    360

    • #

      I have numerous links where the renewables industry and their supporters are adamant that renewables are as cost effective and then some as traditional sources of power. That’s it. There is no need to subsidise industries that are cost effective in their own right. What are we waiting for?

      550

      • #
        Roger

        The European Wind ‘Industry’ published a position paper in June 2017 calling for the same level of subsidy for end-of-life, replacement wind turbines as for new ones.

        They argue that without this subsidy it will be uneconomic to replace end-of-subsidy wind turbines – the paper is aimed at EU policymakers – whilst elsewhere for the public and wider political consumption they talk of how competitive the “low cost” of wind generated electricity is … often claiming it is cheaper than conventional power generation ……

        Like the IPCC they seem to assume that people will fall for the headline smoke and mirrors rather than look behind them and see the actual facts … namely that wind power is unable to compete with conventional power generation on any level. It can’t compete on cost of generation, cost of installation, longevity of plant and it’s inherent unreliability is a total disaster.

        The Wind Europe position paper can be read here :- https://windeurope.org/wp-content/uploads/files/policy/position-papers/WindEurope-Repowering-and-Lifetime-Extension.pdf

        280

        • #
          Roger

          I should add that Even if Wind Power were able to generate at the same cost as conventional gas or coal generation then it would still be many times more expensive because of the huge cost and as yet unproven ability of battery back up.

          240

          • #
            bobl

            Battery backup doesn’t work for wind because there is no maximum outage, in theory the wind can be becalmed for months. Just depends on the continental high pressure systems. There is no battery or dam big enough to store wind energy long enough to get 99.5% reliability. At least with solar you get predictability about 15% of the time, and there is generally a limit of the number of cloudy days. Also Solar tends to generate a little bit (10 – 20%) on lightly cloudy days so one can store for the gaps. Even so your typical 5 day storage setup usually has a generator for those rarer beyond 3 sigma events.

            180

        • #
          Geoff

          The good news is that all those gen sets and software on those propellers can be re-used….. without the propellers and stalks holding same in air.

          As they get written off there are users waiting to buy them for generation of power elsewhere using other methods, no wind involved.

          20

        • #
          William

          People do fall for the smoke and mirrors Roger. I have been over at the Fairfax site today trying to introduce some facts but seriously, the deluded there would argue if I told them black was black, they would insist it was white.

          I wonder why I bother, but even if only a few people open their eyes and blink away the smoke and put down the mirrors, it will be worth it! But what I enjoyed was when one person responded to my comment telling me that 20 July 1969 happened – implying I am a moon landing denier, I cheerfully pointed out that a number of the Apollo astronauts were amongst the sceptical scientists who wrote to NASA admonishing it for pushing CO2 as a climate driver. Like the Apollo astronauts, I know the moon landing to be true, and like the Apollo astronauts, I am sceptical about AGW/MMCC.

          90

    • #
      Ted O'Brien.

      Dennis, have you forgotten that it was PUP, acting on Al Gore’s call, who “protected” the RET from Abbott’s landslide?

      How did Al Gore persuade Clive Palmer to “protect” the RET? We are entitled to know!

      80

    • #
      AndyG55

      The governments of Australia MUST do something about this

      https://debunkhouse.files.wordpress.com/2017/10/screenshot_20171010-0327011.png

      DUMP THE RET

      REMOVE RENEWABLE SUBSIDIES.

      REMOVE ALL FEED-IN TARIFFS ABOVE NORMAL WHOLESALE PRICES.

      BUILD A NEW HIGH-EFFICIENCY COAL OR GAS FIRED POWER STATION IN EACH STATE

      50

      • #
        TdeF

        Just turn on Hazelwood. Put 1200MW of power back in the grid!

        They only had 20 years of the 40 year lease. I have read they spent $1.5Bn on maintenance. It was running at 95% capacity for the last month, so it is not ‘old’. It is not ‘dirty’ unless photosynthesis is dirty. Hazelwood is very clean. Even the latest high temperature stations are only 6% better. As even Alan Kohler wrote, factories and power stations do not have a use by date, unlike politicians. Turn it on, at least until someone builds something much better.

        It is absurd that the Victorian Government paid to keep Hazelwood going, maybe $500Million. With the RET it was unprofitable. Clearly Jay Weatherill has seen sense and obviously done a secret deal with Enron/Mitsui to have Pelican Point running flat out after they lost $15million last year and closed. Burning precious gas at high rates, but at least there have been no blackouts.

        The absurdity is that the Federal government is forcing us to pay people to build windmills we neither want nor need and which do not work, while our State governments fund the private power stations we really need with our tax money. No wonder the country is broke and losing $1Bn a week! We have already passed $500Bn in international debt and that is just the Federal government.

        Now we are told we have to pay for giant batteries! Why?

        Turn Hazelwood on! This was a state power station to supply state power. It is wrong for the Federal government to demand we pay an extra $90 a MWHR just to buy our own electricity.

        Worse, the RET is not even a tax, but a get rich scheme for windmill owners. We get nothing. Robbery under law.

        If AGL paid nothing for Liddell, take it back. Fix it. Keep it going.

        So simple, but our genius PM wants to build a giant battery which makes no power. More billions of borrowed money for grand schemes while everyone lives on a knife edge of his creation. Turnbull is making Rudd look like a visionary.

        20

  • #
    pat

    funny how MSM is pretty silent on this race today:

    8 Oct: Adelaide Advertiser: Bridgestone World Solar Car Challenge: Dark day for South Australian solar race team
    by JADE GAILBERGER, DARWIN
    This year South Australia boasted three university teams at the challenge, with Flinders University to debut its first solar electric vehicle.
    But the team faced some problems after the static scrutineering stage — where the cars are inspected for regulatory compliance and structural integrity — and was forced to withdraw.

    Team manager Dr Stuart Wildy, who has been working on the project for two and a half years, said at the last hour they had a few issues with the car’s motor.
    “If we had a few more days we would have had this sorted out,” Dr Wildy said.
    “It’s disappointing, the team is a bit gutted, we’re all pretty upset about it.”…
    http://www.adelaidenow.com.au/news/south-australia/bridgestone-world-solar-car-challenge-dark-day-for-south-australian-solar-race-team/news-story/763066702a4e7cedcf6c83bfe89e7e8c

    8 Oct: ABC: Georgia Hitch: World Solar Challenge off to a bumpy start as teams run into trouble
    It was a bumpy start for at least seven teams this morning as the 30th World Solar Challenge began from Darwin.
    Nearly 40 teams left the Top End on Sunday, and started the 3,000 kilometre journey to Adelaide, but a number succumbed to issues before they left the city limits…
    Among the top ten starters, Adelaide University’s team ran into trouble a short distance from the start line.
    But after a push from team mates they joined the race and began the journey home.
    Only a few kilometres down the road, barely out of the city, the race appeared to claim its first car.

    Mississippi Choctaw High School’s Tushka Hashi III did not make it far, pulling over in a side lane and flanked by challenge officials.
    Teams from the Australian National University and the University of New South Wales also appeared to have problems with both cars pulled off the road.
    Added to the list were cars from Germany, Malaysia and South Korea…

    Unlike the Challengers, the Cruiser Class winner is not just based on the time taken to get to the finish line.
    Instead, energy efficiency and how close to reality the car’s design is are taken into account.
    Teams can afford to take a more leisurely pace in a bid to maintain even energy use and hope it pays off at the finish line.
    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-10-08/world-solar-challenge-off-to-a-bumpy-start/9028088

    100

    • #
      Peter C

      Co-founder Niklas Kaltz said it had been a great challenge just to build a car, getting to Australia and racing with their team of 44 people.
      “What intrigues me the most if the possibility to drive 3000km without any drop of fuel, that it’s possible to that the sun is powering a vehicle — I would not have thought it would be possible at all.”

      Forty Four people to manage One Car! And then some of the cars did not even start.

      Is this the current state of the SUSTAINABLE electric car? Maybe it is not “possible at all”.

      They have moved on a bit from the single seat racer but the results are not encouraging. I would like to see rules that say the car has to carry four people and a 100kg luggage in the boot. Then see how many make it to Adelaide.

      210

      • #
        sophocles

        Peter, these are racing cars.
        Carrying four people and 100kg of luggage would kill any Formula One car, too. Would this be the end of sustainable fossil fuel racing? :-)

        20

      • #
        clive hoskin

        The only way they could make it to Adelaide,is if they STARTED in Adelaide.

        70

    • #
      clipe

      Pat, the topic of this thread is “Australian govt may dump renewables subsidies, testing, 1,2,3…”.

      Can’t you wait a while before interrupting the flow?

      10

  • #
    Dennis

    O Solar Minnow.

    190

  • #
    TdeF

    There is a lot of double speak, especially by carbon trading Turnbull. Meeting “Paris committments”, when we raced to sign up when America walked away. This is about pleasing his merchant banker friends, not lowering CO2 levels in China.

    Frydenberg did say that capital investments in generation doubled from $40Bn to $80Bn in just four years, while prices soared. Some of the new generation is so bad that $11Bn of it only works for 1% of the time, 3 days a year. When it works, it is claimed it is cheaper but that is like saying electric cars are cheaper to run which is fantasy. The fact is that if you only work 1% of the time, you need 100x the prices. Under the RET, these people are being paid to fail.

    Dump renewables? Just repeal the RET. Walk away from the Paris agreement today. It is nonsense. Even Robert Mugabe turned up in Paris as head of the African coalition for free money.

    Just kill the Renewable Energy (Electricity) Act and all the fiddles since, designed to make coal power and so electricity itself unaffordable without costing the government a cent.

    Then you get Victoria, where the school bully Premier acts deliberately against the interests of all Victorians, shutting the desperately needed East West Link project including billions in cost for nothing. He then increased the price of coal by 300% and Hazelwood immediately announced closure. Now he defends preventing anyone looking for more gas. Plus he bought a timber mill with our money, just to close it and prevent it going to Tasmania.

    With Premiers like Andrews and Weatherill and Berejiklian and Palaszczuk, we have an amazing set of Premiers who each in their own way are dooming their electors to the highest electricity prices in the world. As Frydenburg continued, this is despite the fact that foreign prices are inflated by massive government taxes, so it is far worse than anywhere.

    Thanks to Government intervention, Australia is a laughing stock of carbon policy and now our faux Prime Minister wants to resurrect his Emissions Trading Scheme? The only people in the country laughing are merchant bankers and electricity generation shareholders. Everyone else is going out of business.

    620

    • #
      LevelGaze

      Another excellent comment, TdeF.
      I’ve always appreciated them, here and elsewhere.

      270

      • #
        NB

        I second that, LevelGaze.
        I would add one thing to TdeF’s comment – where he says ‘we have an amazing set of Premiers who each in their own way are dooming their electors to the highest electricity prices in the world’ we must be careful not to blame only the politicians. As absurd as these rather odd little people are, it is the electors who put them there, and the electors who must take responsibility for the travesty. To some extent it is also the fault of ineffective opposition.

        260

        • #
          PeterPetrum

          The problem is, NB, we just do not have a choice any more, in State or Federal Elections, as far as the Lower House is concerned. They are all left of centre on this issue, even if they claim not to be. It is a very depressing scenario. However, if you have read tony Abbott’s speech to the GWPF…….. well, never say never!

          60

    • #
      OriginalSteve

      My rather wealthy great aunt who is the bastion of her local rural community, has very unkind ( but accurate ) things to say about Oberfuhrer A*****s… the CFA unionism debacle was the final straw……

      When a Premier says liberties and freedoms are a “luxury” ( based on no known actual threat ), well …..

      271

    • #
      Ross

      What you seem to be saying TdF is Australia needs a “hard Brexit” approach to this issue.
      As an outsider from across the ditch looking at Turnbull’s poll rating falling like the proverbial it would seem to be a logical approach from a political point of view as well for the practical reasons you point out.

      140

      • #
        sophocles

        It’s all predicated on the myth of there being such a thing as a greenhouse gas, which is a phantasm, a Unicorn with the properties of Pixie Dust, what TdeF justifiably labelled Phlogiston some time ago.

        It’s safe to bring back coal. That’s the message to push. Hard. With the development of MSR generation plants, it’s also safe to develop nuclear, but that message can be pushed next. Let’s not shock the pollies too much too soon.

        120

        • #
          Will Janoschka

          “Let’s not shock the pollies too much too soon”

          WHY?. I prefer them strapped in the chair, large wire attached to ‘head colander’: then shock! :-)

          30

        • #
          OriginalSteve

          I am always worried when the AFR says ” good luck”….

          http://www.afr.com/opinion/columnists/energy-policy-stability-was-always-remote-20171010-gyxrnd

          “Despite the embrace of the rapidly falling cost of renewable energy, the new requirement for further renewable investment to also include such dispatchable power as back-up will doubtless add to the price. The fact that gas, a ready source, is now so expensive only compounds that.

          That also signals the other code words in energy politics and in the energy business that all consumers should be alert to, which is the constant refrain about “downwards pressure on prices”.

          This is a polite way of saying prices won’t necessarily fall – just that they will be less high than they might otherwise have been. Good luck.

          20

  • #
    Dennis

    Buffet bets on a fossil fuel highway …

    HOLMAN W. JENKINS, JR.
    The sage of Omaha knows a policy bubble when he sees it — and electric vehicles are a prime case.

    The Australian

    190

  • #
    PeterS

    I’ll believe when I see it.

    50

  • #
    John Watt

    Email to Graham Perrett, MHR for Moreton

    Hi Mr Perrett,
    We first spoke on the subject of climate change some years ago during a session you hosted at Yeronga High. At that time your guest expert from Griffith Uni rejected the information I tried to present to the meeting on the basis that the author, Dr John Nicol ,was a James Cook Uni academic (physicist).Apparently that was enough to discredit his analysis. Since that time no one has discredited Nicol’s analysis which is not surprising as I later found out that your expert’s field of speciality was frogs and the like. I urge you to read Nicol’s work. However if you choose not to you will be in “good” company. Malcom Turnbull also failed to act upon Nicol’s insights when I attempted to make him aware of the errors in the “CO2 is evil” mantra.
    Failure of our leaders to make the effort to understand the real drivers of climate change is the root cause of our energy dilemma. You have to concede that they are too easily lead by glib tongues such as Tim Flannery and Al Gore. Neither Flannery or Gore have the qualifications or experience to preach on the causes/consequences of climate change but they do have the audacity to give themselves permission to mislead the rest of us. Are we so ignorant that we allow ourselves to be fooled by these self promoters?
    In its simplest terms Australia has an energy problem because we allowed ourselves to be convinced that coal fired power is somehow causing climate change. We chose to “feel good” by condemning coal. That led to such stations becoming unattractive investments. Coupled with the sale of these assets into private hands, maintenance and renewal of coal power infrastructure was neglected. Now we have, in our ignorance, created a supply security problem. Simultaneously the carbon-tax, RET/REC etc. etc tax regime , a direct product of the green misadventure, made renewables look extremely attractive and we headed off down a path that further diminished supply reliability.
    Over the past decade we have gone from an energy supply that was reliable and amongst the cheapest in the world to prices that are amongst the highest and reliability that has South Australia looking at using diesel generators in the coming summer. What have our “managers” been doing for a decade?
    On a more positive but selfish note, Queensland has some of the newest and most efficient coal-fired generators in Australia. Realistically we should maintain and expand such facilities. Queensland’s west is also an ideal place for large scale solar projects. Transmission of energy from coastal stations to the west of the state is a wasteful process so “local” generation is a good idea. Of course 24/7 reliability of solar is dependent on some form of storage. We await a long–life battery that does not create a pollution problem at the end of that life. I note with interest the Katter/Albanese visit to the old Kidston mine site which is planned to become a storage dam for a solar generation project. To my mind this sort of project is the only good thing to come out of the green misadventure.
    Back to the science/mathematical modelling issues that have fuelled the Flannery/Gore misguide arguments: John Nicol , a Queensland physicist showed that CO2 cannot cause the level of temperature change that IPCC/Flannery/Gore claim. Who would you really give credence to on the subject of atmospheric CO2? A blowhard politician and a paleantologist or a physicist? Isn’t what we have done similar to abandoning elections and letting fortune tellers pick our politicians?
    David Evans, a highly qualified West Australian mathematician and ex-BOM specialist has shown that the modelling that IPCC/Gore/Flannery rely upon for their dire forecasts is faulty.
    So we have faulty physics and faulty modelling being used as an excuse to lead us from cheap reliable electricity supply to expensive unreliable electricity supply all in a space of 10 years. Is this how you and your colleagues want to be remembered? Why not proudly embrace the Australian expertise of Nicol and Evans and reject the Flannery/Gore scenario. Let’s get Australia working again with a guaranteed 24/7 reliable energy supply. We could do it in the 20th century, Who conned us into dropping the ball in the 21st century?

    561

    • #
      Rereke Whakaaro

      Nicely put. I tip my metaphorical hat to you.

      160

    • #
      PeterS

      That’s a good message but it’s not the full story. To try and convince our politicians to change focus on renewables we need to convince our politicians they need to adopt the same strategy all other nations are using. After all politicians like following what others are doing for fear of being left behind, which in fact we are. Other nations are also making similar noises about reducing their CO2 footprint like us but they are doing it in a semi-sensible way. They are building some solar and wind farms but they are also building new super-critical coal fired power stations that produce less CO2 than traditional ones like ours. They realise the need for a reliable base load power source, and coal as well as nuclear are the typical ones of choice, at least up to recently. Lately many nations have gone cold on nuclear for obvious reasons hence the massive increase in the demand for new generation coal fired ones. So, what we need to do is make our politicians aware that if they don’t want to be left behind they need to adopt the same strategy as other nations to reduce their CO2 footprint by building new generation coal fired power stations, and at the same time provide lower power prices and higher reliability, as well as continue to use solar and wind farms. It’s a win-win situation any politician should be smart enough to see. Trouble is our politicians are not that smart.

      62

      • #
        KinkyKeith

        And in the end, and in reality, the best thing to do for humans, animals and life in general, is to generate more CO2.

        We thrive on CO2; we take in 400 ppm and exhale 40,000 ppm.

        We have the physiology and neurology to deal with 400 ppm CO2 now and can deal with much higher levels than this.

        CO2 is NOT dangerous to life.

        The most dangerous atmospheric gas to human life is paradoxically oxygen.

        KK

        92

        • #
          KinkyKeith

          The US navy says that CO2 levels in their submarines can average between 3,000 and 4,000 ppm CO2 with no ill effects experienced by crew members.

          Levels of 8,000 ppm likewise produce no ill effects.

          Just look at the exchange rate: 400 in 40,000 out normally.
          In a submarine at 8,000 ppm the exchange rate is still a strong 1 to 5 which suggests that the breathing function can still remove CO2 from the body.

          30

          • #
            Will Janoschka

            “the exchange rate is still a strong 1 to 5 which suggests that the breathing function can still remove CO2 from the body.”

            So can a good vacuum pump! :-)

            20

  • #
    Leonard Lane

    I agree PeterS. Feed in tariffs, tax breaks and other “subsidies” to renewable energy will not go away, because renewables cannot survive without them.
    Level the playing field and treat all electricity generators the same–pay for power and stability and penalize for outages and intermittent power.
    The renewable energy generation/supply problem will disappear.

    190

  • #

    In the UK The GWPF has lodged a formal complaint with the Advertising Standards Authority about an advert claiming the costs of wind power had fallen by 50%. The advert was placed in the nearest tube station to the Houses of Parliament.
    https://www.thegwpf.com/uk-offshore-wind-cost-claims-challenged/

    240

  • #
    Bob in Castlemaine

    Malcolm has a cunning plan it seems? By my reckoning that’s about iteration 547 of his innovative, agile, make-it-up as you go along rule. Why would anyone believe the ramblings of this waffling, convictionless, narcissist as he senses the death throws are upon his ill-gotten empire. All he lacks is Nero’s screeching violin.
    A nation subsidising its way to bankruptcy is a novel concept and no doubt one that Finkel and mentor “professor” Thwaites in their cloistered halls of academia will not want to claim responsibility for. But as they say in the classics when the slipper fits baby you just gotta wear it!

    211

    • #
      manalive

      Perfesser Thwaites, that wouldn’t be Victorian ex-minister for environment John Thwaites who defended the building of the Wonthaggi de-sal white elephant by commenting: ‘building dams won’t make it rain’.

      171

      • #
        Just Thinkin'

        Manalive,

        BUT, building de-sal plants will…..make it rain….

        141

        • #
          Dennis

          No, but is does reduce taxpayers to tears.

          70

        • #
          Sceptical Sam

          Well, something made it rain in Victoria and break the “ten year drought”.

          Could only have been the de-sal plant. That’s the only thing that happened.

          Here’s how it works:

          Gaia gets the sulks because sceptics laughed at her. To pay the sceptics back she stops the rain. The green fantasists say she’s stopped the rain for good (and even if she hasn’t, her aim will be right off and, accordingly, she’ll only rain where there’s no dams). The panicky socialist politicians get their mates to build a billion dollar de-sal plant dowm at Wonthaggi (where the coal is and the State Coal mine used to be). Gaia gets jealous and hurt and upset (she’s a real snowflake) and cries tears of H2O. It fairly buckets down.

          That’s an r = 0.999.

          It’s also best practice climate “science”.

          Get the tissues.

          91

    • #

      Australian Guvuhmint
      ‘may,’ (weasel word)dump
      renewable subsidies! Say,
      let’s not get carried away
      by Turnbullian ambiguity;
      he’s done it before, his
      heart’s not really in it,
      you’d need it in writing
      in triplicate before you’d
      vote for a party that’s
      almost as Left on energy
      policy as those Gramsci
      Leftists, Shorten et AL.

      150

    • #
      clive hoskin

      what is Dr Finkels”Qualification”to be advising OUR federal government about ENERGY?Isn’t he a “Podiatrist”or something?Just HOW does this make him qualify as an “Expert” on generating “Electricity?”

      20

      • #
        OriginalSteve

        Speaking of related matters….it seems Abbott us uncomfortably close to the truth and the liberal luvvies are running fir cover….
        http://www.afr.com/news/tony-abbott-has-entered-the-realm-of-the-loopy-20171009-gyxjt6

        “Tony Abbott’s latest outburst on climate change is being politely ignored by his colleagues while his Labor foes are questioning the former prime minister’s state of mind.

        Following a provocative speech in London overnight in which he mocked climate science, likened climate policy to pagan sacrifice and contended global warming could be beneficial, Liberal MPs diplomatically sidestepped when pressed on the views of their colleague.

        The speech coincides with the government flagging its intention to dump plans for a Clean Energy Target and focus its energy policy on reliability and affordability.”

        And…pot meet kettle…from same article…

        “Greens climate change and energy spokesperson Adam Bandt called Mr Abbott “a dangerous fool who could be simply ignored were it not for his ability to dictate Malcolm Turnbull’s climate policy”.

        Still not seeing the problem here…

        The Left are squealung very liudly now…just keep squeezing….

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      • #
        Rereke Whakaaro

        Dr Alan Finkel, is appointed as the Governments’ Chief Scientist, which is usually a managerial and coordination role. It is his job to coordinate all of the Government’s science portfolios, so that they do not end up working against each other, or fighting over the same resources.

        The person appointed to that role must have sufficient experience in the “hard” sciences, to be able to explain research findings in language that politicians will understand, without having to resort to complex mathematical constructs. It is an advisory roll that merges the physical sciences with the political sciences. He doesn’t need to understand the intricacies of electricity generation (which is a physical process), but he does need to be able to understand the various options available to generate electricity, and be able to assess the pro’s and con’s of each, and express the alternatives in terms that the politicians can understand.

        I can’t speak for Australia, but in the UK, back in the day, the Government Chief Scientist (or equivalent) had a staff of thirty or more scientists that researched what the real researchers were researching, and how well their research was progressing.

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  • #
    manalive

    “In our dreams”, say skeptics, this next election will be about energy policy like it was in 2013. Bring it on We might see a 90 seat landslide again …

    That could happen but only if the Coalition formulates and clearly articulates a distincly alternative policy, not some spineless Turnbull-style policy of the ‘sensible centre’.

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    • #
      Dennis

      They also need a leader, a thinking person who has judgement who cares about constituents and country.

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      • #
        PeterS

        We had such a leader but the LNP and the public hated him, and still do. We deserve the government we get.

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      • #
        robert rosicka

        Dennis I do respect your comments but you have just described no politician in Australian politics and probably the free world that I’ve ever heard of .

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        • #
          Dennis

          Robert they are available, not only Tony Abbott, but the conservative good guys are being manipulated by a corrupt unelected group at party headquarters and their parliamentary team MPs.

          There is hope in my opinion, now that the votes have swung from the historical 80 per cent combined (including swing voters) for the two major sides down to 60 per cent – based on analysis of past elections by electorate, by polling booth results. And other indicators – hope that a third way will emerge, possibly another hung parliament leading to formation of a conservative alliance government.

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      • #
        Will Janoschka

        “They also need a leader, a thinking person who has judgement who cares about constituents and country.”

        I can do that, after sufficient Glenfiddich, but thinking and walking is not so easy! My judgement is unlikely to be what you desired! :-)

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  • #

    Renewables are becoming so cost competitive they don’t need subsidies

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  • #
    Zigmaster

    Several years ago I invested in a company called Australian Renewable fuels .They were receiving subsidies on their business converting kitchen fat into fuel and I went to a presentation where they were saying how cost effective they had become and no longer needed government subsidies. When the government decided to remove the subsidies the company collapsed. I suspect that the renewable energy sector faces the same fate.

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  • #
    destroyer D69

    I cant specify the exact time of the comment in the speech but there was a sly reference to the use of “smart” meters in the context of “demand pricing” as opposed to the current system of “supply pricing” currently in use.Beware //////

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  • #
    RobK

    I hope our government can see it’s way to go through with this. It is the right move. The experiment has gone on long enough. Removing the RET will drive prices down.

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    • #
      Just Thinkin'

      “Removing the RET will drive prices down.”

      ONLY if we build more coal fired power stations, where the coal is….

      140

      • #
        RobK

        Just,
        Yes and no. The price of renewballs will also become competitive. A decade or so ago the WA gov removed it’s direct subsidy on PVs, the price went down. There’s a fair bit of skimming going on with subsidies. Sure, some baseload will help but removing the RET means a massive mill stone is removed from coal fired generation. The RET meant coal had to fund it’s own demise by paying the renewballs to compete. Some generators understandably preferred to pay a fine to the government rather than pay the competition to squeeze it out.

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        • #
          Rereke Whakaaro

          “The price of renewballs will become competitive”. I don’t care about price, I want to know if it is painful. ;-)

          20

    • #
      King Geo

      The problem is that the ALP will in all likelihood win the 2019 Federal Election (based on current polling) & the RET will then be 100% full steam ahead, ie mean full whoosh!!!! (wind) & full sizzle!!!! (solar) ahead. But there will be a tipping point at some stage in the future, ie when consumers have had enough of seeing their electricity prices rise by 300% in a short period of time and by tipping point I mean “I am as mad as hell and I am not going take this anymore!!!!” [quoting Howard Beale in the iconic 1976 movie Network].

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      • #
        Dennis

        I doubt that union controlled Labor and their union supported Green partners will win the next election. Most voters recognise their many shortcomings and the chaos, dysfunction and incompetence of the Rudd-Gillard-Rudd Labor Governments.

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        • #
          King Geo

          I hope you are right Dennis but the Polls have been toxic for the Turnbull Govt for a considerable period now.

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          • #
            Dennis

            Former PM Howard, an amateur expert on political trends, commented that the long term support for the major parties was 80 per cent, swinging votes included.

            He said now it is 60 per percent combined voter support.

            So 40 per cent will not vote Labor Green or Liberal National.

            And maybe the swingers will reconsider?

            20

          • #
            Rereke Whakaaro

            Do the polls reflect public feelings regarding the political parties, or feelings about the activities of the leadership in those parties? There is policy, on the one hand, and expedient gamesmanship, on the other.

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            • #
              Graeme No.3

              Well, the policy of both major parties is to gouge the public and they differ little on the amount to be taken, so I presume that the public doesn’t like gamesmanship.

              40

              • #
                Rereke Whakaaro

                Just as I suspected. Australia is either doomed by political inadequacy, or it is doomed by the fear of political inadequacy. In either case your politicians appear to be inadequate. Size is important, when it comes to intellect.

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      • #
        clive hoskin

        And that is why”Little Johnny Howard”took away our guns(well he thinks he did)There are rumored to be more guns around now,than before he “Hoodwinked”us.

        “To disarm the people is the most effective way to enslave them.” – George Mason.

        20

        • #
          robert rosicka

          You would be right about the number of firearms today being greater than little johnnys day and by quite a bit Clive .

          00

        • #
          Dennis

          He did not take away guns, he required people who own them to be licenced and for their guns to be registered … and banned most military style weapons.

          00

  • #
    robert rosicka

    I noticed in the Sun newspaper today how a survey said we love electric cars here in vic and is it time to follow other countries and ban fossil fuel cars .
    By the look of it they surveyed electric car nuts and just made the rest of it up.

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    • #
      Manfred

      By the look of it they surveyed electric car nuts and just made the rest of it up.

      More than likely. MSM propaganda of the desperate.
      Flick the channel mate. Over on the other side …

      At GWPF, Warren Buffett Bets On The Fossil-Fuel Highway
      Date: 08/10/17 | Holman W. Jenkins, Jr, The Wall Street Journal

      In the meantime, to prove they’re making progress, they’ve all adopted the same interim strategy: They mandate that car makers sell a set number of electric cars in return for being allowed to sell gasoline-powered cars. Fiat admits to losing $20,000 on every electric vehicle it sells in Europe. General Motors loses $9,000 on every Chevy Bolt. Even Tesla is partly sustained by selling zero-emissions credits to conventional car companies that actually make money (unlike Tesla).

      The implication is worth pausing over: In banning gasoline-powered cars, then, California and other jurisdictions would be banning the very product whose profits allow electric cars to exist in the marketplace today.

      This story has ripples and ripples. Ford fired its CEO, Mark Fields, in May when electric- and autonomous-car hype failed to loft Ford’s stock the way it had Tesla’s. He was replaced by Jim Hackett, manager of Ford’s futuristic mobility division. Mr. Hackett this week announced his own strategy and, lo, Ford will double-down on gas-powered SUVs and pickups.

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      • #
        OriginalSteve

        One is EVs is stupid.
        Mandating 1000 EVs is 1000x stupid.
        Its a bit like 1000 x 0 is still 0.

        “Stupid is as stupid does..”
        - Forest Gump.

        EVs, the failed socialist state of California, the faiked socialust state of SA, the Soviet Union, Communism, greenist CAGW….all is rank foolishness, however socialist fools believe that their foolishness can be fixed by even more foolishness….which is the definition if insanity….

        Thus nature balances itself…

        Go figure.

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      • #
        Roger

        @ manfred
        Precisely so – the people who today praise electric cars because the running costs are low are in for a very rude awakening as the subsidies are removed, batteries require expensive replacement and electricity costs rise even further because of the exceptionally high cost of renewable energy.

        Take away the subsidies and the (so far) ‘hidden’ costs will severely damage if not destroy private motoring. If a stage is ever reached when electric cars and batteries have to be made with ‘renewable’ energy then it will be like a trip back in time to the 1930s when only the very wealthy could afford personal transport. And that is exactly what the eco-marxists are working towards with their plans to de-industrialise and destroy developed economies.

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        • #
          Manfred

          Indeed, Roger.
          EV’s have all the features of another UN Trojan horse, no different from ‘climate change’. Both with their end-game political goal that is NOT the focus of discussion.

          In the case of EV’s, it is as you mention, the abolition of private ownership, convenience and liberty … Transforming our World: the 2030 [UN] Agenda for Sustainable Development28. We commit to making fundamental changes in the way that our societies produce and consume goods and services.

          In the case of ‘climate change’, the key MO being the euphemism of a ‘transformation to sustainability’, it remains a political lynch-pin, “Climate change is one of the greatest challenges of our time and its adverse impacts undermine the ability of all countries to achieve sustainable development.”

          Dare I say it, this likely includes the ‘political sustainability’ of a UN administration, capable of ensuring the melange of top-down polices and controls continue ad infinitum, unending justification provided by that uniquely UN defined ‘problem’ ‘climate change‘, the designer manufactured ‘problem’ without end or solution, except the final solution (implied by reduction ad absurdum of the UNFCCC definition of ‘climate change’), namely, the complete abolition of humanity from the face the the Earth, the only way to expunge ‘climate change’ eliminating all direct and indirect anthropogenic influence on atmospheric composition and land usage.

          The UN claim that, “The Goals and targets are the result of over two years of intensive public consultation and engagement with civil society and other stakeholders around the world, which paid particular attention to the voices of the poorest and most vulnerable.”

          What is stated here clearly by the UN is that they have been in deep consultation, largely with themselves, which is surely yet another cause of many for great alarm and attention?

          The answer? Purge the ideology, defUNd and return the UN to the core businesses of peace keeping and aid distribution.

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          • #
            Rereke Whakaaro

            The UN is not particularly good at peace keeping, being reliant on drawing troops from the member nations.

            They are also not particularly good at aid distribution, either. It is hard to distribute aid when all of the fuel has been syphoned out of the truck.

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    • #
      Dennis

      We love EV so much that Nissan and Mitsubishi decided to stop offering them for sale here following modest initial sales success and then sales dropped markedly in 2015/16.

      The Chairman of the new combined Renault, Nissan and Mitsubishi said days ago that the future for electric vehicles in Australia was not looking good in the foreseeable future.

      Beware of dreamers, they got us into this mess.

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      • #
        Sceptical Sam

        Yep. And Hyundai is running into significant resistance from its dealer network in Australia for its EV offering because the dealer network makes its money from servicing the petrol powered Hyundais. There’s not much servicing required for EVs – even those made by Hyundai.

        There’s more to the EV nonsense than meets the eye.

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    • #
      Rereke Whakaaro

      “a survey said we love electric cars”

      I doubt that they did any survey at all, other than asking the opinions of their colleagues, who just happened to be in the office at that time.

      There is a saying: “Journalists live and work in a midden. They have to go through the motions.”

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    • #
      Dennis

      The most affordable EV cars were Nissan Leaf and Mitsubishi equivalent and they are no longer sold here, following initial modest sales during 2015/16 sales dropped to an unsustainable level and the cars were withdrawn from the Australian market.

      The Chairman of the Renault, Nissan, Mitsubishi combined business said recently while visiting Australia that there was no viable EV market here and into the foreseeable future EV would not become more than a niche market.

      10

  • #
    Tom R Hammer

    If you haven’t realized it yet, there’s a fight going on behind the scenes between Turnbull and AGL. I just see this as HMAS Frydenberg taking a shot across the bow. Turnbull is getting desperate to keep Liddell running.

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    • #
      el gordo

      Possibly true, but the real battle is going on inside the Coalition.

      ‘The government has accepted 49 of the 50 recommendations of Chief Scientist Alan Finkel’s review of the National Electricity Market. However the recommendation for a clean energy target – which would drive investment in renewables and bring down emissions, and which the government did not accept – has divided the Coalition, preventing a decision on its future for four months.’ SMH

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    • #
      Tom R Hammer

      I hope the realists in the coalition prevail.

      20

    • #
      Rereke Whakaaro

      Um, what is the AGL?

      10

      • #
        David-of-Cooyal-in-Oz

        G’day R W,
        AGL is a big supplier of energy here. Started out as “Australian Gas Light” company and was true to name in the early days. The gas was produced from coal. Now it’s a more general supplier, and bought the Liddell (electric) power generation plant a few years back from the NSW government.
        AGL has announced it”s going to close Liddell which will put NSW into real trouble with electricity supply. Turnbull is trying to keep Liddell open.
        Cheers,
        Dave B

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  • #
    Robber

    From Dr Finkel’s report: Levelised costs of electricity in 2020.
    Wind $92/MWhr No back up
    Large-scale Solar PV $91/MWhr No back up
    Large-scale Solar PV $138?MWhr Includes 3 hours storage at 100%
    Solar Thermal with storage $172/MWhr Includes 12 hours storage at 100%
    Combined Cycle Gas Turbine $83/MWhr
    Supercritical Coal $76/MWhr

    Intermittent “renewable” electricity is now competitive? Not even close. They still need those $80/MWhr certificates (read subsidies).

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    • #
      Graeme No.3

      Robber:

      I very much doubt that figure for Solar Thermal with that much storage. Where in the world is such a plant running?

      Not that it matters, those plants are so small, 2 or 3 large diesels in output.

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    • #
      David Maddison

      I wouldn’t be surprised if they have overstated the fossil costs and understated the unreliables costs.

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    • #
      Chad

      I have a huge issue with comparing LCOE figures of any intermittent, unpredictable source, to a continuous supply source.
      They are not providing a comarable service by any stretch of imagination
      There are several other debateable issues with LCOE costing methods.

      10

  • #
    Rick Kinsman

    No more subsidies! Well, that’ll be the end of Elon Musk’s little venture in South Australia. None of his projects have ever made enough money to stand on their own feet without massive government subsidies. He’s the world’s first man to become a billionaire on the strength of government subsidies.

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    • #
      Rereke Whakaaro

      Yes, by my old mum thinks he is such a nice man, who always looks so clean and happy.

      20

    • #
      OriginalSteve

      Most arms dealers made their money the same way…..govt money….

      Not that I’m comparing….

      10

      • #
        Will Janoschka

        “Most arms dealers made their money the same way…..govt money….”

        Is That Right to bear arms; or dealing in right bear arms?
        Do we now have only Left armed bears ‘left’? :-) Englitch is so weird!

        10

        • #
          Rereke Whakaaro

          I saw a pickup truck in the US which had a sticker on the back window: “Defend your right to arm bears”.

          I thought it was funny, at the time.

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  • #
    turnedoutnice

    The 33 K GHE is an artificial construct from R D Cess’ incorrect physics in 1976 (to fail to understand that -18 dg C OLR/+15 deg C Planckian surface radiance is not Earth’s radiant emissivity to space, which has to be unity). GISS then used a 2d computer model with non-existent ‘negative convection’ to back up Cess’ claim. This uphill heat transfer breaches the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics, and 25 years later was acknowledged in pubic by James Hansen as a ‘fudge’.

    There are three other major mistakes: Planck assumed a vacuum so Earth’s surface does not heat the atmosphere in the atmospheric window increase as [C)2] rises, the real GHE is defined by GHG IR self-absorption physics, explaining the shape of OLR. Thus as far as space is concerned, it does not ‘see’ the surface, rather the end of self absorption, making CO2 15 micron emit from ~20 km with no heating due to Earth’s IR emission, but a significant OLR heating as [CO2] rises. There is also an hitherto unknown increase of extinction coefficient of rain clouds due to much higher back reflection (~30,000x) of the forward scattered Mie lobe of 500 micron droplets by subsequent such droplets.

    Crucially, there is almost perfect negative feedback of CO2 increase heating by low level clouds abstracting latent heat allied to the unusual partial self absorption of water vapour 16 -23 micron, also greening (predicted by Arrhenius in 1908). So real CO2 climate sensitivity is near zero. This is very difficult science and I forgive people such as Sir Stephen Hawkin who have allegedly made a key mistake, and have been protected by colleagues for 25 years. Hansen admitted science [redacted], covered up by the UK Met. Office hence the models run hot – they are dumping the C2 part to get some use out of the models, which are a tour de force of computer modelling.

    As for David King, Blair’s Chief Scientist, and your Finkel, they have failed as scientists to do the El Haytham process, which was before you make a scientific prediction you must prove all the logic steps from the beginning are true. To start with Cess’ easily proven radiant emissivity mistake, and to claim it is true because it supports a political result, is deeply shameful and unprofessional. Key people are now backing off; the Hawkin seal of approval has been lost. Climate models using Cess as justification must be withdrawn from the literature. those ‘scientists’ who have behaved unprofessionally should be ditched from office or employment.

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    • #
      Will Janoschka

      “those ‘scientists’ who have behaved unprofessionally should be ditched from office or employment.”

      Indeed Andrew!
      However this is but the complete psudo-science FRAUD of “all mass with temperature radiates in all directions”. By your own writings you agree with such! Why?
      All mass above (abs) zero has some spectral ‘radiance’ This ‘radiance’ however is never ‘flux’ W/m² but only a numeric potential for such flux, highly dependent of such mass surface properties. When highly polished, no spectral radiance, no potential for power transfer with surface spectral emissivity near zero.
      Spontaneous EMR exitance (flux) is always limited by any and all opposing ‘radiance’ in each direction and each wavelength, polarity, chirality, and parity!
      Nowhere has any two way opposing (power transfer) EMR flux (spontaneous or not) ever been observed or even detected!

      Without such opposing radiance potential; no directional antennas or phase array radar could ever be developed.

      Clearly YOU are one of those ‘scientists’ who have behaved unprofessionally should be ditched from office or employment.”
      All; the best!-will-

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    • #
      Peter C

      Thanks turnedoutnice

      Who is R D Cess? I assume that you mean; Robert D Cess.
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_D._Cess

      This is very difficult science

      I agree with you there. I do not know why you decided to post it here but I’m hope that we can continue this discussion at the next Weekend Unthreaded.

      10

  • #
    David Maddison

    Warren Buffett is a subsidy farmer and freely admits there would be no point in building windmills were it not for the tax credits which he applies to reduce his company tax.

    http://amp.dailycaller.com/2016/04/15/warren-buffett-is-building-lots-of-new-wind-turbines-with-your-tax-dollars/

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  • #
    TedM

    I look forward to hearing the wailing from the alternative energy providers.

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  • #
    Antoine D'Arche

    I can see a wobble at the base of this particular house of cards…..

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  • #
    robert rosicka

    The media is doing their best to scare the public to keep the CET .
    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-10-09/average-cyclone-season-predicted-bureau-meteorology/9030814

    Up to 13 cyclones this year is the prediction but I’m sure if they really tried they could bump it up to 97 cyclones a year .

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  • #
    Briden

    And the owners of all these wind and solar farms are just going to sit back and watch the value of their assets get trashed? I think not.

    10

  • #
    Dennis

    We all know, I hope, that info commercials are what television channels produce as behind the news, current affairs?

    CH9 tonight promoted Tesla, solar panels and batteries.

    I have done the maths, no way is their payback period valid.

    They ignore the financing costs, repayment of debt or loss of income after spending cash.

    They ignore the replacement of solar panels cost, and replacement of batteries cost.

    And the writing off of the “assets” against reduced electricity cost.

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    • #
      OriginalSteve

      They are also ignoring what that money, if invested wisely over 10 years, might give you.

      Right now all it does is go into a black hole, so you have to provide elctricity for your family that should be guaranteed stable previously, so that cash is just propping up a grid thats been r*ped by the parasitic rent seekers….

      Maybe we should just let it all crash. Sometimes with recalcitrant delinquent teenagers you just have to let natural consequences take thier course….

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  • #
    Dennis

    Tesla power wall – 8 years, 10 years before replacement?

    So how is that going to save consumers electricity costs?

    51

  • #
    pat

    read all. however what is fantastic is that whoever at News laid out Rowan Dean’s article, placed a smoking chimney photo at the top and later has a 46sec video, claiming every possible CAGW catastrophe that will befall Australia – & that is followed by a nasty anti-Trump video on autoplay, blah blah:

    9 Oct: Courier Mail: Time for climate scientists to produce evidence that carbon dioxide emissions affect climate
    by Rowan Dean
    I told Paul Murray’s lively late night TV show on Sky News that 2017 would be the year the climate con comes to an end. So how is my prediction going?…
    Climate Change: The Facts 2017, a series of essays published by the Institute of Public Affairs, not only debunks the entire scare campaign about the Great Barrier Reef, but in a piece of superb investigative work Dr Jennifer Marohasy exposes the Bureau of Meteorology’s embarrassing manipulation of temperature data.
    The book has sold out three print runs and gained serious attention overseas…

    And this week a new book is coming out by Australia’s Ian Plimer, one of our greatest geologists.
    Called Climate Change Delusion and the Great Electricity Rip-off it’s a must-read for anyone who still believes they’re saving the planet by paying through the nose for electricity…
    http://www.couriermail.com.au/news/opinion/time-for-climate-scientists-to-produce-evidence-that-carbon-dioxide-emissions-affect-climate/news-story/ef170a7fec1638cf691887df6bb26d3a

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    pat

    totally uninformative piece of nonsense, but an update nonetheless:

    9 Oct: ABC: World Solar Challenge: Western Sydney Uni team within striking distance of lead
    By Steven Schubert
    They finished day one in third place, only 10 minutes behind the leaders, but halfway through day two had fallen back to fifth, and 31 minutes behind.
    However, team leader Saamiul Bashar said he was confident the team could regain some ground…

    Mr Bashar said the team was content to go slower to conserve energy as clouds gather over the course.
    “Tomorrow’s expected to be much worse so we need to be thinking a lot further ahead…
    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-10-09/western-sydney-team-within-striking-distance-in-solar-challenge/9031748

    30

    • #
      Dennis

      Solar is a technology that is intriguing.

      But it reminds me of banana republics where time goes by, and there is no pressure to achieve excellence.

      31

      • #
        toorightmate

        Dennis,
        I am sure that solar and wind will play a big part in the world’s power needs, but not this century.
        A considerable number of technical issues have to be overcome before they are anywhere near cost competitive and economically sensible.

        30

        • #
          MudCrab

          Solar? Maybe, using some new developments and/or magic.

          Wind? No, I honestly can’t see that happening. Wind power is when you break it down just getting magnets to rotate. The difference between wind power and coal power is getting that rotation to happen in the first place.

          So, how is wind power going to become more effective? Either better blade design, or improvements to the actual generator design.

          So, are the blade designs going to improve their efficiency by a significant amount between now and the future? I doubt it to be honest and even if they do, then the same increase in understanding of blade design will no doubt also carry over into steam turbines.

          So, that leaves design improvement to the generators. Will this happen? I have no doubt, but the point here is that any improvements in design efficiency would transfer over all methods, meaning that coal, gas, hydro, nuclear et al production methods would also improve.

          Simple fact is there is very little improvements to wind power that would no be transferable to other more conventional methods as well, and that is even before we talk about the big variable of wind speed.

          Solar? Maybe

          Wind? I honestly doubt it.

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          • #
            Graeme No.3

            MudCrab:

            Not much improvement left for blade design. Already they are at 85-90% of the Betz limit (higher figure for the much less popular 2 blade unit).

            Gas turbine design has had better results with CCGTs going from 55% to 62% efficiency in the last 15 years (about). As the boiler end hasn’t been boosted by much** the improvments have been in the turbine end.

            ** the HELE approach of higher boiler temperatures isn’t possible as that would mean higher exhaust temperatures and lower efficiency in the turbine part.

            Solar cells are improving slowly but single cell designs face the quantum limit around 32%. Multiple cell ones are around 45% but the cost rules them out for general use. The declining cost of PV panels has more to do with reductions in manufacturing costs.

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          • #
            Rereke Whakaaro

            I have an idea.

            Why don’t we take the principle of the windmill blades, and reduce the size, and suspend them in a river, so the flowing water generates electricity. Better still, why don’t we capture the water behind a big wall, and then use the pressure of the water to spin the windmill blades even faster, to create more electricity.

            20

            • #
              robert rosicka

              Capturing water behind a wall and using water pressure to turn a blade ! Ludicrous I tell you .

              10

        • #
          bobl

          No chance, Wind at under 2 Watts per square metre and Solar at 5 Watts per square metre foir 99.5% reliable implementations. Even if wind and Solar were 100% efficient they still would not be economic or save 1 kg of CO2. The energy density of environmentally scavengable energy is just not big enough ( well except for geothermal ).

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    • #
      Rereke Whakaaro

      … he was confident the team could regain some ground…

      The team could try picking it up, and carrying it … just a suggestion … ;-)

      20

  • #
    pat

    smells like an advertisement:

    9 Oct: 9News A Current Affair: $3000 to $600 – how solar power is slashing bloated energy bills
    VIDEO: WATCH Free power for life
    Soaring energy prices are creating a grassroots push towards renewable energy for Aussie households, and now A Current Affair viewers have a special chance to ride the wave.

    Five state-of-the-art Tesla battery systems are up for grabs in a competition from solar installers Bradford Energy and A Current Affair, that will help some lucky homeowners get a head start on setting up a bill-slashing renewable energy system at home.
    For more information about the Tesla Powerwall battery competition, click here.
    Already, 1.7 million households across the country have solar panels and now they are turning to battery storage to maximise their savings…

    Amanda McKenzie from the Climate Council said interest in batteries and solar were at record highs as people sought solutions to their growing energy bills.
    “Now we’re seeing real innovation from companies like Tesla that are coming into the market and saying we want to empower households with solar, with batteries,” she said…

    Depending on how much power the owner uses and what state they live in, it will take three to five years to recoup the cost in bill savings…
    http://www.9news.com.au/national/2017/10/09/18/15/3000-dollars-to-600-dollars-how-solar-power-is-slashing-bloated-energy-bills

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      Dennis

      The cost has come down, buy now, your loss will be less.

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      OriginalSteve

      Its a bit like previously we used to be able around here to park for free on the street.

      Then the govt came along and decided it needs its cut, and charged $200 / month.

      Now $250/month is a “bargain”.

      Its seriosuly messed up, but people seem to just take that type of “abuse” and normalize it….its weird…

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      robert rosicka

      Reason for the interest in panels and batteries is more to keep the lights on Pat .

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    robert rosicka

    Talked to a guy today who got in early for the big 66 cent feed in tariff and has a 1.5 kw system , he said his electricity bills are similar to his neighbour without solar .

    40

    • #
      Sceptical Sam

      Ah yes, Robert.

      But he lives in Victoria does he not?

      It’s been a cold winter and spring (like Perth) and he’s had his heaters going during the day, using up all of his (max) 6.0 kWh of power that his miserly 1.5 kW system produces and, accordingly, has nothing left to sell into the grid at the 66 cents feed-in-tariff rate.

      And then, of course, he has to buy more off the grid, at whatever the exorbitant rate is in Victoria these days, to keep warm after his PVs fail to capture any watery sunshine after 4:00 pm and at night.

      PS: His actual cost per kWh is probably higher than neighbour’s (without the PVs) when you take into account the Opportunity Cost of his “investment” in the panels, the need to replace his inverter at around ten years (or earlier if it’s a cheapy), his maintenance costs and the 1% pa loss in efficiency of the PVs compounded over the life (20 years) of his installation.

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        robert rosicka

        You’re right Sam , he is in Vic and because of when he got the panels he probably paid big money even more than me (will ask tomorrow) for my 5kw system .

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    Crakar24

    I think its great idea to drop the subsidies but suppose they do where does that leave SA? Suddenly we will have true symbols of stupidity scattered everywhere because once they break they won’t be repaired due to costs

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    • #
      AndyG55

      So true, Those that sucked deep on the subsidies will be LONG gone !

      Money in the Caymans etc

      52

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      robert rosicka

      I’ve been to every state in Oz bar tassie but the amount of abandoned buildings and infrastructure in south Australia is truly something to behold .
      The sheer waste is incredible .

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    Michael

    Fine. Let’s keep a clean/renewable energy target as an aspiration if that signals your virtue. But there is no need to fund it, since there is no need to subsidise renewable energy any more, by their own admission.
    Otherwise, is this just an exercise in extreme tax troughing? Just asking..

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    Michael

    Fine. Let’s keep a clean/renewable energy target as an aspiration if that signals your virtue. But there is no need to fund it, since there is no need to subsidise renewable energy any more, by their own admission.
    Otherwise, is this just an exercise in extreme tax troughing? Just asking..

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    Don B

    The linked bar graph showing how renewables increase electricity prices can not be shown too often. Denmark and Germany have Europe’s highest percentage of renewables, and they have Europe’s most expensive power. If SA were a country, that windmill-mad state would have the most expensive electricity of any country in the world.

    https://s3.amazonaws.com/jo.nova/graph/energy/electricity/cost/markintell-global-comparison.gif

    http://joannenova.com.au/2017/08/australia-denmark-germany-vie-to-win-highest-global-electricity-cost-its-the-nobel-price-prize/

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      robert rosicka

      Speaking of SA , I see they have been lucky over the last couple of days not to have a blackout .

      http://www.aemo.com.au/Electricity/National-Electricity-Market-NEM/Data-dashboard#nem-dispatch-overview

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      James Murphy

      In the case of South Australia, it is also good to point out:
      - Total local electricity generation [...] decreased by 11.3%.
      - In 2016 –17, more than 50% of South Australian local generation came from gas powered generation.
      - In 2016–17, South Australia imported 2,889 GWh[...]. This was the highest import in ten years.
      - The average annual import increase through Victoria to South Australia since 2007–08 is 246 GWh, or 18%.
      - 2016–17 had the highest time-weighted average spot prices ($108.92/MWh) since 2006–07, 187% higher than the average price of the last ten years.
      - Total diesel generation increased by 19 GWh to 27 GWh, the highest production in five years.
      - In 2016–17, total wind generation only increased 21 GWh from 4,322 GWh to 4,343 GWh.
      - Wind registered capacity increased from 547 MW to 1,698 MW in 2016–17, with an average annual growth rate of 14%

      all available in the 2017 South Australian Historical Market Information Report

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    pat

    advertising?

    9 Oct: TheWest: West Aussies want to store excess power in batteries
    by Daniel Mercer
    Almost two-thirds of WA households would be keen to install batteries on their homes to store excess power from solar panels, highlighting the threat posed by new technology to traditional utilities…

    Figures from ***consultancy SunWiz show that while only a tiny number of WA households have battery systems, 62 per cent of those polled said they would consider installing one
    https://thewest.com.au/news/wa/west-aussies-want-to-store-excess-power-in-batteries-ng-b88620735z

    omitted by Mercer:

    ***Solar Energy Consultancy – SunWiz Solar Consultants

    LinkedIn: Warwick Johnston
    Sunwiz is hiring: customer support and product testing agent for our unique solar sales software, PVsell. Melbourne based (Eltham )
    Current: SunWiz – Solar Energy Consulting,
    Clean Energy Council,
    Australian PV Institute ETC
    https://au.linkedin.com/in/warwickjohnston

    more advertising – fails to state “solar consultancy”:

    The solar boom started in our suburbs, but now it’s moved out of home By Kathryn Diss
    But new research by consultancy firm SunWiz…
    ABC Online – 28 Sept 2017

    ***”energy consultancy”:

    Solar panel installations ‘skyrocket’ in Australia
    ABC Online-13 Apr. 2017
    Warwick Johnston from ***energy consultancy firm Sunwiz

    at least theirABC mentions the unmentionable here:

    Solar batteries ‘exploding’ in popularity with uptake tipped to triple in 2017, audit finds
    ABC Online-13 Feb. 2017
    Warwick Johnston from ***solar consultancy SunWiz…

    West Australians embrace solar panels at record rate
    ABC Online-30 Jan. 2017
    The data, compiled by ***solar industry consultancy SunWiz

    Record breaking solar investment, Australian businesses spend $33 million in a month
    ABC Local-4 Jan. 2017
    According to new data from ***solar consultancy firm Sunwiz

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    Chad

    On ABC Lateline Monday pm…
    AGL propose the Liddel replacement plan.
    AGL s boss has anounced a plan to replace Liddel with a “Synthetic” power generator comprising the following..
    1400 MW of Wind generators
    750 MW of Gas generation
    100 MW expansion to Baswater site
    250 MW of battery storage.

    Assuming a man in his position understands the technology and the units used, ..
    …i see about 500 MW average output from the Wind, with the battery only for the “firming” of that supply and to buffer the switch to Gas when the wind drops

    …. It would be simpler and cheaper to just make it all gas !

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      Ian1946

      Did anyone think to ask where the power would formed rom to charge the 250Mw battery?

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      Robber

      Does AGL think we are all stupid?
      Replace 2000 MW of Liddell capacity, say 1600 MW of reliable 24/7 supply, with:
      – 100 MW additional supply from Bayswater
      – 750 MW of gas (where is the gas coming from) but say 600 MW on average.
      – 420 MW of wind on average (but low point of zero) backed with 250 MW of batteries
      I make that replace 1600 MW of reliable and low cost supply with 1100 MW of higher cost and less reliable supply.

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      • #
        Briden

        I don’t think that it’s cost to the consumer that is the issue for AGL Their only concern is profit to AGL.

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        robert rosicka

        Robber AGL doesn’t think we’re all stupid but is banking on the Government being just that .

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    pat

    not quite the same outrage we have come to expect from The Greens!

    9 Oct: TheAdvocateTasmania (Fairfax): Orange-bellied parrots unlikely in wind farm area: UPC Renewables
    by SEAN FORD
    A company planning big Circular Head wind farms says there is a low likelihood critically endangered parrots will appear in its project area…
    UPC Renewables chief operating officer David Pollington: “Existing data indicates that there is a low likelihood that the orange-bellied parrot would occur on the Jims Plain site…

    Tasmanian Greens Leader Cassy O’Connor said the state needed to increase its mix of renewables so it was not as dependent on hydro power in times of drought.
    “We also need to protect threatened species,” Ms O’Connor said.
    “It’s not just orange-bellied parrots that have been impacted by wind turbines and overhead power lines, but also wedge-tailed eagles and white-bellied sea eagles.
    “These are iconic, important species to Tasmania and it’s good to see the proponent acknowledge the risks in their submission to the federal Environment Department.”

    Ms O’Connor said wind turbine technology was evolving quite rapidly, and there were now models on the market which were more efficient energy producers and had much less impact on threatened bird life.
    “We believe new wind farm operators should be exploring alternatives to the large bladed turbines.”
    “The investment is likely to pay off in improved efficiency and biodiversity.”…

    Jim’s Plain is the smaller of two Circular Head wind farms being planned by UPC…
    The projects are expected to cost $1.2-1.8 billion in total.
    http://www.theadvocate.com.au/story/4975266/scarce-parrots-unlikely-at-site/

    VIDEO: 9 Oct: CNET: Try making this right turn dragging 196-foot wind turbine blade
    Commentary: It was the video that mesmerized millions last week and the transport company has to make the astonishing turn almost 200 times
    by Chris Matyszczyk
    A video posted last week to Facebook showed Scottish transport company McFadyens trying to maneuver a 198-foot wind turbine blade on a trailer around a 90-degree turn on a tiny road in the Scottish Highlands…
    https://www.cnet.com/au/news/uber-self-driving-car-safety-driver-training-pittsburgh-test-track/

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    pat

    8 Oct: San Francisco Chronicle: Wind energy’s expansion in Nebraska creates sharp new divide
    by Grant Schulte, Associated Press |
    But as wind energy has grown in Nebraska, so has a fervent resistance from mostly rural landowners and lawmakers who view the turbines as noisy, heavily subsidized eyesores that lead to lower property values…

    The pushback was clear last year, when Lancaster and Gage counties approved noise restrictions that effectively halted several proposed wind farms. At the state level, a Nebraska lawmaker is trying to temporarily stop commercial wind projects in the Sandhills…

    Sen. Tom Brewer of Gordon, whose district encompasses most of the Sandhills, said turbines could ruin their appearance, lower property values and harm regional tourism.
    “You’re taking a pristine area, and you’re going to shred it for the sole purposes of wind energy,” said Brewer, who introduced a bill last year to impose a two-year moratorium on wind energy farms in the Sandhills. The bill remains stuck in committee, but Brewer said he’ll push for it again in next year’s session.
    Brewer pointed to the experience of former Oklahoma Gov. Frank Keating, who told The Associated Press on Friday that the $5 billion wind incentive package he approved in 2002 hasn’t delivered the jobs and tax revenue he had been promised.
    “We were far too generous,” Keating said.

    Brewer said he supports solar power and wouldn’t actively oppose wind energy in areas with stable, clay-based soil. But he argued that advocates for wind energy have oversold its benefits.
    “There are places they can go build them that aren’t going to be on a fragile, unstable surface, where once you destroy it you can’t fix it,” he said…

    Craig Andresen of Wood Lake, in rural Cherry County, said he was worried that placing turbines in the region would harm bats and birds along migratory routes and permanently erode the land. Members of his group, Preserve the Sandhills, have also voiced concerns about the “whoosh” and “thump” sounds the rotating blades make and the flickering shadow they cause when the sun is low.

    Preserve the Sandhills successfully fought a proposed 30-turbine, $108 million wind farm last year, although the developer has hinted it may revise and resubmit its plans.
    Andresen said he also worries about the impact of trucks hauling turbine blades and other heavy components on the county’s roads and grasslands.
    “When you disrupt that amount of ground, there is no way to reclaim it to make it look the way it has been,” Andresen said.

    Twyla Gallino of Valentine said she objects to large companies using federal tax incentives to finance projects…
    http://www.sfchronicle.com/news/article/Wind-energy-s-expansion-in-Nebraska-creates-sharp-12261801.php

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  • #
    turnedoutnice

    Addendum: a 4th basic scientific error; climate alchemists claim a pyrgeometer signal is a real energy flux. It’s not – its the <95% theoretical flux from the sensor to a perfect black body at absolute zero.

    This is incontrovertible, basic physics.. The Trenberth energy cartoon has as much validity to climate science as a pair of Popeye pyjamas. Sorry, but any true science professional who has designed furnace like me will confirm. Check Chapter 3 Chemical Engineering Handbook, used by people who do engineering calculations rather than fancy cartoons. I pity such cartoonists who have been led by Goody and Yung's mistaken bidirectional photon diffusion theory applied to the surface – atmosphere junction, failing to understand that Planck's 1913 thesis assumes a vacuum with energy due to the gap. In reality, for a self-absorbed GHG IR band, the IR energy transfer to space is where self-absorption ceases; there is zero IR energy transfer at the surface, which is cooled mostly by latent heat loss via clouds.

    Any science claim must prove by experiment all the logic train. Climate Alchemy is based on fraud and makes up intermediate steps to get the Charney Report 'right answer'. I am ashamed how there has been a collective will by unprofessional scientists to deceive the public. The whole caboodle is now falling apart as key people scatter to get blame on those who are in too deep.

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      turnedoutnice

      Addendum: the pyrgeometer instrument outputs >95% theoretical Stefan-Bolzmann radiant exitance based on the internal reference temperature.

      For people like Trenberth to claim this theoretical signal is a real energy flux, even if calibrated against the radiant exitance of a hollow black body, is unprofessional. It’s one of the 4 basic mistakes, including R D Cess 1976 basic Emissivity mistak,e in IPCC climate models, backed up by GISS in 1976 using fraud, admitted in public (AIP interview) by Hansen 25 years later. The climate models should be withdrawn from the IPCC literature until corrected, this time under 1000s of eyes of honest, professional scientists. No more IPCC/ Marxist invisibility cloak and denigration of any opposition to damp down criticism.

      00

  • #
    Lionell Griffith

    manage the transition

    Translation: The winners get, the losers pay, and the party rolls on.

    Isn’t it grand that he is so generous with other people’s money?

    80

  • #

    The only solution is to overthrow your anti-Australian “leaders”. And kick out the half of the population that keeps electing them; that half is killing you. (That may sound like fantasy; but all of this reasonable talk in Jo’s article and in the comments is no more effective.) We are dealing with a generation of absolute fools (in science just as much as in politics, and in citizens’ responsibility).

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    • #
      Lionell Griffith

      Would “if you vote for it, you pay for it and if you don’t vote for it, you don’t pay for it” be OK?

      It is based upon the idea that if you want something from the government, you should pay for it. So Vote with YOUR money. One dollar equals one vote and vote as often as you wish. Then, have the elected officials take the pot and run the government with only that amount with no additional taxes for anything. When it is gone, it is gone!

      But…but…but…. No buts about it, I am sick and tired of people being generous with my money who have no skin in the game and who always define “fair share” as more from someone else.

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    Mark M

    Arthur Sinodinos, abc Lateline, September 15, 2017, 6.21 minutes:

    Q. Can you guarantee that whatever form the clean energy target, that it honours that (2015 Paris) target?

    AS. “I can guarantee that whatever we do in this area will be consistent with our obligations because we are not walking away from Paris, we made those agreements in good faith, we’re not walking away from it, but Australians are saying they want security & reliability, they want downward pressure … blah blah yada yada”

    http://www.abc.net.au/lateline/late-debate:-arthur-sinodinos-and-anthony-albanese/8951474
    . . .
    The elitist attack on deplorables, diminishing our quality of life for their ‘faith’ an agreement that uses junk doomsday ‘science’ will continue.

    What about the agreement with your fellow countryfolk & their wellbeing first, Mr Sinodinos?

    Trump has said he is out of Paris Agreement, (though it hasn’t happened yet, but, Pres. Trump has laid groundwork over a red-tape, mine infested exit).

    Abbott? Fooled me once, dunno about a second chance.
    Sure, there was a conspiracy to out him for Truffles Turnbull before Paris 2015.
    Abbott should have gone nuclear, and destroyed RE and doomsday global warming, but he tried to placate his enemies.
    Abbott still believes in a carbon-constrained economy, just a small constraint:

    Nov 16, 2016, the Bolt Report
    TA, 7.00: “The abbott govt was prepared to commit to a 26-28% reduction in emissions.”
    AB: “Weren’t you wrong.”
    TA: “And, I did that Andrew, because I am convinced that we can do that in ways that don’t damage our economy.”
    https://www.whooshkaa.com/episode/?id=89817

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    TedM

    Link to snippets from Tony Abbots speech to be given in the UK in an hour or two.

    http://www.heraldsun.com.au/blogs/andrew-bolt/why-didnt-turnbull-and-frydenberg-speak-like-tony-abbott-will-tonight/news-story/0f52d27071c083bf9a6e4577d2892a09

    How can you argue against this stuff unless you are an absolute fool. Interested to hear what our resident trolls have to say.

    I suspect Jo will post the link to the whole speech when it’s done and dusted.

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    • #
      PeterS

      His speech sounds like good news to all skeptics. Despite the fact Abbott is far from perfect (who isn’t?) he would now be the ideal PM to replace Turnbull for the sake of this nation and avoid a financial implosion. The trouble though he would have to get replace virtually the whole LNP in the process with new people, which would be a good thing for the party and the nation. If we do not turn things around very soon this nation will regret it once the crash and burn scenario plays out. Of course if someone else came out and agreed with Abbott’s speech then perhaps that person should kick the anti-Australian Turnbull out and start all over again. Anyone please! I don’t want my children to suffer the crash and burn scenario this country is currently heading for at breakneck speed.

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      • #
        Dennis

        There are quite a few Abbott supportive conservative Liberals in Parliament now and prepared to be candidates. General Moylan for example who was rejected as a Liberal Senate candidate by the corrupt Liberal HQ mob.

        But other such as “Captain” Andrew Hastie, former SAS officer and now member for Canning WA is another.

        40

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          PeterS

          They are all good candidates but none are able to replace Turnbull without a major upheaval in the party. Time is running out and I wish the election was held now to get closer to the major upheaval the LNP must have before the next move. The longer they wait the worse it will get for this nation. Frankly I wish the LNP just destroy itself and a new party formed. It’s so full of deadwood and anti-Australian leftists. Like a family car that’s too old to keep repairing, there eventually has to be a time when a new or good used car has to replace it, and now is the time.

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    Robber

    Another intervention by AEMO in SA, but what does it mean?
    AEMO ELECTRICITY MARKET NOTICE
    Direction – South Australia Region 10/10/17
    In accordance with section 116 of the National Electricity Law AEMO has issued a direction to a participant in the South Australia region.
    The direction was necessary to maintain the power system in a secure operating state.
    The direction was issued at 0600 hrs and is expected to stay in place until 1730 hrs 11/10/17

    From Anero.id, it appears that this morning wind in SA was providing only about 200 MW, so possibly AEMO instructed SA gas supplies to come on line. Since then, wind has picked up to over 550 MW, but gas has increased from 700 to 1000 MW. Presumably the intervention means higher costs to keep the lights on in SA?

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      robert rosicka

      Robber i have been watching the market notice section and SA escaped a blackout a few times and mostly from fluctuating wind but once because of a bus bar trip .
      They seem to have gone back to only relying on wind and when it stops blowing the panic sets in .

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    • #
      robert rosicka

      Ahh now I see why the dispute with the coal mines expansion was all about , I thought they had encroached into a wetland or something similar .

      Our client the Wollar Progress Association is challenging the approval of the Wilpinjong coal mine extension on climate change grounds. This is the first case to test these important laws which were designed to ensure the climate change impacts of mining are properly assessed and understood.

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        robert rosicka

        And if anyone want a laugh there’s more to the story here .

        http://www.edonsw.org.au/

        40

        • #
          Rereke Whakaaro

          You have got to laugh at the media, who always show cooling towers, belching water vapour into the atmosphere. Who can say what effect that might have on the climate. We might all die from respiratory illnesses, not to mention the long-term affect on weather patterns.

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    Dennis

    Off Topic:

    Please read this public letter to the Chief Justice, High Court of Australia.

    And please make as many Australians as possible aware of it, and what is behind it.

    http://www.michaelsmithnews.com/2017/10/my-letter-to-the-chief-justice-of-the-federal-court-of-australia-about-murphys-disgraceful-conduct.html#comments

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    pat

    9 Oct: WaPo: EPA chief Scott Pruitt tells coal miners he will repeal power plant rule Tuesday: ‘The war against coal is over’
    by Juliet Eilperin & Brady Dennis; Chris Mooney contributed to this report
    Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt told coal miners in Kentucky on Monday that he will move to repeal a rule limiting greenhouse-gas emissions from existing power plants, assuring them, “The war against coal is over.”…

    EPA spokeswoman Liz Bowman said in an interview Monday that Pruitt chose to speak about his plans in Kentucky because coal workers have a direct economic stake in policies aimed at curbing emissions from coal burning. “He’s speaking directly to people in coal country about how the rule negatively affected the whole industry,” Bowman said…
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/energy-environment/wp/2017/10/09/pruitt-tells-coal-miners-he-will-repeal-power-plan-rule-tuesday-the-war-on-coal-is-over/?utm_term=.905f67034cf7

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    Chris in Hervey Bay

    Just a bit off topic, but this drives me nuts.
    When they are talking about battery storage, lots of times they quote “capacity” in MW, eg 250MW.
    This to me is meaningless.

    I have an electronic flash which runs on 4 x 1.5v AA batteries.

    They charge up a big capacitor to 2000 volts.

    When the flash goes off, the capacitor discharges into a load of almost zero ohms, there is a little resistance in the wiring.

    The power released is about 2000 watts, but only lasts 0.0025 seconds.

    You see the problem I have with the quotes about battery storage for the grid ?

    The only meaningful way to quote battery capacity is in megawatt / hours.

    90

    • #
      Chad

      Correct.
      Energy capacity is expressed in Whrs (orkWh or MWh etc)
      But it is also useful to know the Power Capacity in W or MW etc, since that determines the batteries ability to supply energy at any point in time.
      I suspect that many commentators in this area have no idea what these units mean !
      PS. Infact the same point applies to all power generation, You need to know how much power a generator can produce instantaneously (MW) , but you also HAVE to know what its ability is to supply power over a longer period (MWh).. Usuall averaged over a full year for generation.
      This is where one of the big illusions of Solar and Wind are exposed.
      …But apparently, not to everyone. !

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    David Maddison

    If we ever get a sensible government and return to traditional reliable and cheap power generation what’s going to happen to all the solar panels, windmills, batteries etc.?

    They have little or no salvage value and will mostly represent a disposal problem.

    The only useful salvageable materials of any quantity will be steel from windmill towers and copper from the generator. I assume the rare earth magnet materials could be recycled by a toxic process if sent back to China.

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      David Maddison

      Perhaps some of the components could be donated to Africa where they are used to intermittent power (if they are connected at all).

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    el gordo

    In NSW the Springvale Mine is now secure, Foley is on the job and Premiers Gladys is playing catchup.

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-10-09/miners-celebrate-as-springvale-mine-saved-from-closure/9030424

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      robert rosicka

      Elgordo they should let the watermelons take it to court , their whole case depends on their ability to prove AGW in a court and that’s what we want to happen .

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      Dennis

      Don’t be fooled by Luke Foley grandstanding.

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      • #
        robert rosicka

        Grandstanding Dennis or trying to keep it out of the court ?

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        • #
          Dennis

          Luke is a classic grandstander, and his television grabs are pathetic.

          One of the latest his complaint that the NSW Government is not doing enough to provide school classrooms. He conveniently ignores that many NSW Public Schools were sold by the last Labor Government and now locating replacement land is difficult, and expensive. Noting too that Building The Education Revolution squandering of taxpayer’s monies by Federal Labor included many of those schools sold not long after the building “revolution” (Moscow School of Marketing terminology) ended.

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            el gordo

            When it comes to Springvale and Piper the federal member Andrew Gee (Nat) and state member Paul Toole (Lib) are nowhere to be seen.

            Volatility lingers in the air.

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    • #
      robert rosicka

      Ian if that speech is word for word from Abbott it’s like no speech I’ve ever heard from him and why now why didn’t he make a bigger move when in the top job .
      Only negatives in that speech really are his reference to his heroes , Howard and Pell .

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        Another Ian

        RR Hopefully we’re never too old to learn

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        Dennis

        I know John Howard Robert, he has always been a devoted public servant and honourable member who was well liked in his electorate, and you might remember how he and his Minister for Foreign Affairs Downer became team members of the “Coalition Of The Willing” senior committee, President Bush, Prime Minister Blair and Prime Minister Howard during the period that followed Iraq invading Kuwait, the act of war that started Operation Desert Storm to get Iraq out of Kuwait. Despite the best efforts of the leftists to rubbish the UN sanctions that followed by denying that Weapons of Mass Destruction ever existed in Iraq the truth is that the Hussein Regime deployed gases against their own Kurd population and against Iran. Weapons Inspectors discovered unused canon shells designed for WMD, laboratory equipment and were told the Iraqi people had given nicknames to two of the chemists: Doctor Death and Chemical Ali.

        Howard wisely chose to sign the UN Kyoto Agreement but exercised caution by refusing to ratify it. He said that his government would prefer to take a common sense approach to reducing “greenhouse gas emissions”, cost effectively without economic damage. Their direct action initiatives have resulted in Australia being one of the few signatory nations that has met or exceeded every emissions reduction target to date.

        Another Howard era complaint relates to gun control. He took away our weapons people claim. Not so, he banned military weapons and created a licensing system for gun ownership and for guns be registered by the licence holders. I was advised by a North WA cattleman that he owns a Vietnam War .762 semi-automatic SLR rifle because he was able to show a need, feral animal control.

        Few Australians deny that the Howard Government was one of the best, and during their almost 12 years in office our standard of living improved from OECD membership 13th on list down to 8th on that list.

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          Another Ian

          Dennis

          Remember the time when “military weapons” were illegal in NSW?

          Then check the saga of the 7.7 x 54, which was a Lee Enfield .303 with one turn taken off the barrel thread and the shells resized. Same bullet, same powder charge.

          IIRC it was the same in France

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          robert rosicka

          He took away more than military style weapons Dennis and did so in a knee jerk populist action , the overall figures for gun violence in Oz was in decline when Port Arthur happened.
          The only positive thing to come out of the new laws that I can think of is safe storage requirement , might be something else in there somewhere.
          We’re constantly told by government not to judge the many on the actions of a few .
          Howard did do some good things I’m sure but unless I’m mistaken he started the ret and as for Kyoto why sign at all , it just opened the door that should have stayed shut .
          Abbott has had some good ideas but lacked the ability to sell them , to keep in good with left of his party he chose to shift his stance on CAGW when pm and move closer to centre .
          Good government and a good PM has a way of bringing all onboard , the majority anyway and I haven’t seen that ability from any politician .
          Doesn’t matter what idea or policy you have if you don’t have the skill to sell it and get it passed .

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            Dennis

            Skill is wasted when there are slightly more members of a cabinet that oppose the leader who have been indoctrinated by a “black hand faction” of rebels intent on bringing the leader down, anonymously issuing relentless negativity into the public domain from 2009 onwards, even after the leader defeated the government in 2010 forcing them into a minority alliance to remain in power, and defeating them decisively in 2013 in a landslide victory gaining many new electorate seats.

            And then the black hand seized the opportunity presented by new MPs, many with small margins in their respective electorates, who were told that based on polling results if their leader and now prime minister remained in those positions at the 2016 election they could lose their new seats.

            And with opposition from a Labor and Green dominated hostile Senate blocking most government bills or forcing amendments that watered the impact of the legislation down.

            To claim that Abbott has no skill in politics is ridiculous, apart from his successes as Howard Government Minister for Health, he hold a Bachelor of Laws, Bachelor of Economics and is a Master of Arts in politics.

            Add to the above the international forces that were undermining him, as Christopher Monckton exposed in his video warning us to watch PM Abbott’s back.

            For your information a prime minister is not a dictator and on most if not all policies and legislation must consult his cabinet members. Something like a public company board of directors and chairman of the board.

            In his final media conference when leaving office Tony Abbott advised journalists not to use leaks and backgrounding offered by people (MPs) who are not prepared to have their name used/published as the source. He was of course referring the black hand members. And very much to their ring leader. I have observed that what Tony Abbott has to say now from the back bench is in his own name.

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              Another Ian

              Dennis

              “To claim that Abbott has no skill in politics is ridiculous, apart from his successes as Howard Government Minister for Health, he hold a Bachelor of Laws, Bachelor of Economics and is a Master of Arts in politics.”

              Shakey ground there imo when you consider the political largelights in UK politics with PP & E

              https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Philosophy,_Politics_and_Economics

              To maintain a place in a US postgraduate course it was required to maintain a “B” average grade. The explanation was that more than 90% mark was an “A” and 80 to 90% a “B”.

              Which means there are still an awful lot of cock-ups coming from the percentage above 90 IMO.

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              robert rosicka

              It’s obvious we don’t and never will see eye to eye or agree on Howard and Abbott, just two points , Captains pick , and I said he lacked the skill to sell his policy’s which meant that and that alone .

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              robert rosicka

              I actually think Abbott was one of the most effective opposition leaders the Libs ever had , I never said he didn’t have political skills , I said he lacked the skill to sell his policies.

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      PeterS

      How come when Abbott speaks it sounds so much like common sense compared to the rest of the LNP, which sounds more like a bunch of blockheads, yet his own party keeps ignoring or deriding him? Isn’t this proof the party is in serious trouble and gone too far to be saved?

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        Dennis

        The problem is the Turnbull factor, Liberal HQ now controlled by left leaning lobbyists who have changed the rules to suit themselves.

        For example, the selection of candidates used to be left to electorate branch members who met candidates and held a secret ballot to vote for their choice. Now HQ appoints candidates. However, at the last Liberal Party Conference recently the Abbott motion was passed by almost 2 votes to every 1 vote to return pre-selection of candidates back to the branch membership.

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          PeterS

          It’s pretty obvious to me despite the hatred by the media and some of the public, the LNP would have a far better chance of winning the next election than Turnbull as leader. This is also despite the fact Abbott was never my favourite leader; not even close, but compared to Turnbull, Abbott is light years ahead in so many ways.

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      Reed Coray

      I read Abbott’s speech. Would someone from Australia please explain to me how a Prime Minister who so eloquently espouses common sense got replaced by as far as I can tell a blithering idiot?

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    robert rosicka

    Their ABC has reported on Abbotts speech without going into an editorial rant but they did only interview those with the CAGW ideology for comment though .

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    Graeme#4

    Comments in The Australian raise the issue of subsidies to coal. The only figures I have that compare subsidies are from 2013-2014. Is there more recent information on subsidy comparison that we call all reference when refuting these erroneous subsidy claims?

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    pat

    meanwhile, still no further MSM on BoM/Mildura/Marohasy; and no MSM on Ian Plimer’s new book (other than a Courier Mail piece I posted on an earlier thread).

    however, out there shilling for renewables:

    4 Oct: Fairfax Sunraysia Daily: Christine Webster: More extreme heat on the way
    THE number of days above 40C and 35C in Sunraysia will continue to increase if measures aren’t taken to reduce carbon emissions.

    That’s according to Bureau of Meteorology senior climatologist Darren Ray, who was a guest speaker at the Dried Fruits Australia annual forum earlier this week.
    He said the number of “extreme” hot days in Mildura had considerably increased over the past 30 to 40 years.

    For more of this story, purchase your copy of Thursday’s Sunraysia Daily 5-10-2017. To subscribe to our Digital Edition Click here

    PHOTO CAPTION: Bureau of Meteorology senior climatologist Darren Ray says the sunshine in Mildura should be capitalised upon to generate more renewable energy and help reduce global warming.
    http://www.sunraysiadaily.com.au/story/4967686/more-extreme-heat-on-the-way/

    18 Sept: Fairfax Eyre Tribune: VIDEO: Eyre Peninsula climate outlook from Darren Ray
    by Casey Treloar
    History and science shows climate change is inevitable and could serve some serious consequences for the Eyre Peninsula, like rising sea levels and changing rain variability.
    Bureau of Meteorology senior climatologist Darren Ray spoke at last week’s Nature of Eyre Conference and said climate change was already a reality but there were opportunities to reduce the impact…

    “If we do reduce emissions quite strongly, take up the opportunities that renewable energy offers, the temperature rises and rainfall changes stabilise from about 2050 onwards but if we don’t reduce emissions we see warming and drying continually well beyond 2100.”
    He said sea level rise would be a concern for the Eyre Peninsula due to its surrounding oceans and the current rise of 4mm per year sea level rise “does add up”.

    “Over the last 25 years we’ve probably seen 10cm of sea level rise along the Eyre Peninsula coast, but the future projections are for that rate of rise to increase, we’re starting to see some indications of that,” he said.

    “Research shows serious concern over the next several hundred years and projections are now talking about around one metre by 2100 and there is recent research showing some real concern about multi-metre sea level rise over the next several hundred years that we may already be locked in for.”…

    Mr Ray said advances in paleoclimate research (looking at climate conditions hundreds and thousands of years ago) and looking at patterns of variability called Southern Angular Mode (measure of cold frontal systems south of Australia) meant the bureau was able to provide more accurate rainfall predictions…
    VIDEO (LINK): Full Darren Ray presentation 28mins33secs
    http://www.eyretribune.com.au/story/4932118/a-chance-for-changes/

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    pat

    9 Oct: ClimateChangeNews: Benjamin Wehrmann: German Greens: ‘No coalition with Merkel without climate progress’
    (Benjamin Wehrmann is staff Correspondent for the Clean Energy Wire. Prior to joining CLEW’s editorial staff, he worked for the AFP news agency)
    “The 2020 goals – and actually all the other goals that follow – can only be achieved if a coal exit is initiated now,” (vice chairman of the Greens’ parliamentary group Oliver) Krischer said. If Merkel makes good on her promise, he said, prominent Green demands to immediately shut down the country’s 20 most-polluting coal plants and gradually phase out coal-fired power production over the next decade have a great chance of becoming a reality. A corresponding expansion of renewable energy would then become inevitable, he adds.

    But Krischer also points out that both the CDU and FDP backed the continued use of coal power for decades to come in their coalition agreement in the coal-mining state of North Rhine-Westphalia earlier this year…

    “Nobody in the Green party is particularly excited about a possible Jamaica coalition, and other constellations would have been easier for sure,” said Krischer.
    The FDP insist on strengthening market-based policies and have criticised the EEG, a cornerstone of Germany’s energy transition, which requires consumers to pay for the renewable roll-out via a surcharge on their power bills…

    FDP head Christian Lindner recently reiterated his party’s demand for a “reasonable energy policy” to cut the cost of the energiewende. On climate policy, Lindner said Germany ought to abolish its “unrealistic” national CO2 reduction targets, and align them instead with European standards.

    The Bavarian branch of the conservatives that share power with Chancellor Angela Merkel’s CDU at the federal level, the CSU, would also be a difficult partner for the Greens. CSU transport minister Alexander Dobrindt, who would have preferred a coalition with the FDP but without the Greens, recently mocked the environmentalist party as being “the tofu that has fallen into our meat stew”…
    http://www.climatechangenews.com/2017/10/09/german-greens-no-coalition-merkel-without-climate-progress/

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    pat

    Mathiesen keeps running into inconvenient facts, as he tries to debunk Abbott. Hewson is Hewson:

    9 Oct: ClimateChangeNews: Karl Mathiesen: Climate change “probably doing good”, says former Australian PM Abbott
    Former Australian prime minister likens treatment of climate sceptics to the Spanish Inquisition says current government lost seats by not campaigning on energy prices
    Abbott told the group the ostracisation of those who do not accept climate science was “the spirit of the Inquisition, the thought-police down the ages”. He also reprised his 2009 assertion that the “so-called settled science of climate change” was “absolute crap”…

    John Hewson, who led the Liberal party from 1990 to 1994, said Abbott’s speech to Lawson’s group “sees him in like-minded, if disturbingly deluded, company”.
    “Tony Abbott has had a long history of playing short-term politics, for his own political benefit, with the existential threat posed by a rapidly changing climate,” said Hewson.
    “Abbott was effective in opposition – a man of nope rather than hope. His basic thrust is that if you can’t understand it, don’t believe it, or accept it. When it comes to climate, and the magnitude and urgency of the challenge, Abbott is prepared to deny the undeniable, and to ignore the risks and costs if left to future generations. History will undoubtedly judge Abbott and Howard, and their small band of deniers harshly. When they could have acted on climate and emissions they failed as leaders, miserably.”…

    A Lancet study in 2015 supports Abbott’s claim that more people die from cold weather than hot. But the World Health Organisation has found that by 2050, climate change will cause 250,000 extra people to die each year from malnutrition, malaria, diarrhoea and heat stress…

    “More than 100 years of photography at Manly Beach in my electorate does not suggest that sea levels have risen despite frequent reports from climate alarmists that this is imminent.”
    Scientists often refrain from linking single weather events to climate change, saying only that they fit with what they expect to see more of because of climate change…

    Sea level rise is one of the least controversial aspects of climate science. It is progressing at 3.4mm per year globally, according to the Australian government’s Ozcoasts website. Perhaps not enough to appear in photographs against other variables, such as daily tides, but over time scientists agree this will cause problems with coastal housing and infrastructure…

    Climate Home asked repeatedly for an invitation to attend the event. Abbott’s spokesperson said the speech was “not considered a media event”. Climate Home understands the Times of London was invited to attend.
    http://www.climatechangenews.com/2017/10/09/climate-change-probably-good-says-former-australian-pm-abbott/

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      robert rosicka

      Of course Hewson has nothing at all to do with a renewable energy company that would be hurt by Abbotts comments.

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    Tell Josh we won’t be Spain. But South Australia can be Catalonia.

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    pat

    posted 2 hours ago – BoM/ABC response to Abbott’s speech by any chance? read al:

    10 Oct: ABC: Record-breaking temperatures prompt BOM to launch heatwave service early
    ABC Weather By Kate Doyle
    The Bureau of Meteorology has brought forward the annual launch of its online heatwave service after months of record-breaking temperatures.
    The service normally runs from November 1 to the end of March.

    National heatwave project director John Nairn said the bureau had noticed increasing heat episodes in northern Australia and parts of the east coast, prompting it to bring the service forward by three weeks.
    He said starting the service early was unusual.
    “It won’t happen every year. On occasion, particularly if you have sections of the country being affected by drought, it is likely that we will see some earlier heat events,” he said…

    Why does it matter?
    Extreme heat has killed more people in Australia than all of the other natural disasters combined…

    While the elderly and young are most at risk from high temperatures, for most a moderate level heatwave is just part of an Australian summer.
    But Mr Nairn said it was something everyone should be aware of.
    “If normally fit people don’t adapt and change their behaviour under extreme conditions, they too can be affected by the heat,” he said…
    “Unfortunately under the warming environment that we’re seeing, we are seeing more extreme events turning up more frequently.”…READ ALL
    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-10-10/bom-heatwave-service-starting-early-high-temperatures/9016262

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      KinkyKeith

      The BOM’s concern for citizens possibly overheating is admirable but, where is our government’s concern about the 1808 Australians who died from drug abuse last year?

      This whole scam just keeps on getting weirder and weirder and it’s obvious that we need a federal minister for Heatwaves.

      Priorities?

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        AndyG55

        If electricity prices weren’t climbing so high, old people could afford to pay for their air-conditioning.

        September was only the 12th warmest in 40 years, even according to BOM.

        One hot weather day, according to 1 second AWS values

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      robert rosicka

      Heat has not killed more Australians than all other weather factors combined , more untruths from BOM and their ABC .

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      Graeme#4

      And an estimated 801,000 children under the age of 5 die from bad water- related illnesses each year, such as diarrhoea. WHO estimates that a total of 3.4 million people die each year from bad water. Something that mostly be remedied by diverting the billions wasted on trying to stop global warming.

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        AndyG55

        Graeme, you have to realise that the AGW cultist, and those who support them, DO NOT CARE about easily solved health issues that kill millions.

        They would rather divert ALL available funds to creating an intermittent, unreliable energy supply system in once developed countries.

        Anti-science, anti-human, anti-life.. That is the AGW way. !!!

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    Dennis

    Don’t forget that the last Labor Government in NSW sold electricity assets at a loss of $6.1 billion compared to the lowest valuation estimate of asset values. Or that they manipulated the government owned private companies managing those assets by arranging for the companies to borrow money to add to the “dividends” paid to the Labor Government applied to make budget bottom lines appear stronger. After settling those debts only $800 million was realised.

    AGL Limited was one of the buyers, and gifted Liddel Power Station coupled to Bayswater Power Station, two power stations for one price.

    There are very murky waters surrounding NSW electricity generation politics.

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    Another Ian

    O/T – very

    Any clues on how to get Firefox to use UK English for spellcheck on this site?

    As far as I can see US English dictionary has been removed.

    On Chiefio’s site seems to accept UK English – a somewhat anti-nationalistic response imo!

    Haven’t tried others as yet.

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      Another Ian

      OK. Seems you have to go into the Programs/Mozilla/dictionaries folder and deactivate US Eng there. Experimentally I added a “1″ to the dictionary name rather than deleting it and now it seems to work ok.

      Don’t know yet whether anything else doesn’t!

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    pat

    don’t know what to make of this, but Giles is not happy:

    9 Oct: Renew Economy: Giles Parkinson: The case against Tesla and battery storage just hit peak stupid
    It came in an article in Australian Financial Review over the weekend, under the authorship of one of its “Chanticleer” columnists, Michael Smith, and supposedly quoting Snowy Hydro CEO Paul Broad and its CFO Gordon Wyler from an interview and a “previously unreleased presentation”.

    The article makes claims about the cost comparisons of pumped hydro and battery storage are so absurd that it is stunning to think that it could be repeated in a leading business journal, let alone the back-page column that claims to the country’s most authoritative…

    So why is Snowy running so scared and mounting such a ridiculous campaign against battery storage? Chanticleer paints Broad as someone who is fighting against “vested interests” and politics, but this nonsense from a government owned utility speaks of exactly that.

    But these are strange and curious times. The denial of climate science is one thing, the push for coal another. The argument against battery storage doesn’t add up.

    To get this right, we need a reasoned debate. We are not likely to get it from the Murdoch media, which continues to make stuff up about the level of renewable energy subsidies. The AFR, owned by Fairfax, and Snowy Hydro, need to do better than serve up this sort of crap

    ***(Note: We sought to check with Snowy Hydro on Monday, but the media folk did not return our calls).
    http://reneweconomy.com.au/the-case-against-tesla-and-battery-storage-just-hit-peak-stupid-33090/

    ***just heard a rumour from a caller to 2GB regarding SMEC, which was chosen to carry out the Snowy Hydro 2.0 feasibility study, but won’t repeat it here. will investigate further.

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    pat

    all behind paywall:

    Victorian energy companies forced to help struggling customers by Pia Akerman
    The Australian-3 hours ago
    Victorian energy companies will be forced to give greater assistance to customers struggling to pay their bills, … More than 13,500 Victorian households were disconnected for … Victorian energy companies forced to give more help to customers struggling to pay bills amid rocketing disconnections.

    The costs of the renewable energy target game by ROBERT GOTTLIEBSEN
    The Australian-4 hours ago
    Second, while the politically correct class in our society argues that renewable energy targets are essential regardless of cost and reliability, …

    Clean energy target a non-starter on road to affordable energy
    The Australian-14 hours ago
    And let’s be specific: we need electricity prices to halve from today’s levels … It means that those pesky renewable energy rent-seekers will no … But don’t think that it’s just the Queensland generators that are playing this game.

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    Another Ian

    “Aussie Revolution: Mounting High Level Attacks Against Renewable Energy”

    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2017/10/09/aussie-revolution-mounting-high-level-attacks-against-renewable-energy/

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    Another Ian

    A comment string from

    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2017/10/08/reported-plunge-in-renewable-costs-prompts-aussie-government-to-pull-subsidies/

    ” Reply
    Forrest Gardener
    October 8, 2017 at 9:53 pm

    Interesting. The Australian government has gone up in my estimation.

    They are now at -999,999,998 which is up 2 from my previous rating of -1,000,000 (the maximum negative rating). Barring further stupidity they should reach around -990,000 by the time they lose office.
    Reply

    toorightmate
    October 8, 2017 at 10:49 pm

    Forrest is a very precise statistician – and is 100.0000000% correct.
    Reply
    George Tetley
    October 9, 2017 at 12:08 am

    toorightmate

    He started this project in the 1950’s
    bloke-down -the-pub, (soon with no beer)
    SteveT
    October 9, 2017 at 2:06 am

    Forrest Gardener
    October 8, 2017 at 9:53 pm

    Interesting. The Australian government has gone up in my estimation.

    They are now at -999,999,998 which is up 2 from my previous rating of -1,000,000 (the maximum negative rating). Barring further stupidity they should reach around -990,000 by the time they lose office.

    Something is “out” by three decimal places here. But I get the idea.

    SteveT
    Reply
    Forrest Gardener
    October 9, 2017 at 2:57 am

    Hey Steve. This is climate science we’re talking here :-)

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    Robber

    Not looking good for SA and Vic, according to latest advice from AEMO.
    Medium Term Projected Assessment of System Adequacy (MTPASA) is the primary tool used to assess the expected supply and demand of electricity for a period of 24 months.
    RESERVE NOTICE MT PASA PUBLICATION 10 October 2017
    AEMO ELECTRICITY MARKET NOTICE
    The MTPASA result published on 10 October 2017 shows Low Reserve Conditions (LRC) in South Australia for November 2017, Summer 2017-18, March 2018, Summer 2018-19, March 2019, and in Victoria for November 2017, Summer 2017-18, March 2018, Summer 2018-19. AEMO will continue to monitor the situation and take appropriate actions, if necessary.

    Presumably this already factors in Musk’s big battery and Weatherill’s 80,000 litres of diesel per hour generators.
    Mr Musk said that Australia could be powered by 1,890 square kilometres of solar panels — roughly a tenth the area of Sydney — backed up by seven square kilometres of batteries. Perhaps we simply relocate SA’s climate refugees to Tasmania (it’s cooler there) and cover Adelaide in solar panels.

    At 3.30pm today, SA wind is providing 150 MW from nameplate capacity 1700 MW and gas is providing 900 MW to meet current demand of 950 MW, but that will peak at 1300 MW at 7pm.

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    robert rosicka

    Just listening to ABC drive program with Nicole Chavastek? And she was laying on the sarcastic remarks a bit thick about Tony Abbotts speech , she interviewed at least three people who had an ideological bias with the CAGW cult and Abbott was called Troglodyte and Neanderthal.
    But I was amazed by the interview with Craig Kelly , well spoken ,addressed all the issues that Tony raised succinctly and to the point , it must have frustrated the greenie broadcaster because her devils advocate tone changed and she interrupted him constantly when she heard something that didn’t match her biased views .
    Well done to Craig imo.

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      Peter C

      Well done Robert for sticking with the ABC despite all their provocative drivel.

      I can no longer bring myself to listen to them.

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        robert rosicka

        Where we live it’s the emergency channel and I suppose it’s my rural background but I’ve been onto them for a while and wouldn’t listen or watch it at all now if it wasn’t to gain the bias perspective.

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      el gordo

      Craig is our hero, as is Tony.

      “We are more sophisticated now but are still sacrificing our industries and our living standards to the climate gods to little more effect.”

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    pat

    ***what is weird is these responses from the pollies. Liberal MP Tony Kelly is semi-positive, read for his comments:

    10 Oct: Sky News: Climate change ‘probably doing good’: Abbott
    with AAP
    Deputy Labor leader Tanya Plibersek told Sky News that Mr Abbott’s comments bordered on ‘loopy’.
    ‘Tony Abbott left the realm of the merely destructive and entered the realm of the loopy. This is just ***weird stuff from the former prime minister,’ she said…

    Shadow Attorney General Mark Dreyfus told Sky News the prime minister’s lack of respond (?) was unacceptable. ‘What’s really disappointing is to see the prime minister… standing silent in the face of this nonsense, this idiocy from the former prime minister,’ he said.
    ‘I’d be expecting a responsible (?) to come out and say directly, that none of that from Tony Abbott will from any part of the formation of government policy…

    Cabinet minister Scott Ryan poured cold water on Tony Abbott’s comments applauding scepticism about climate change and rejecting the need to cut emissions.
    Senator Ryan said coalition policy was clear and had been under Mr Abbott.
    ‘I haven’t seen many goats around the hills of parliament and I don’t think we will,’ he told Sky News on Tuesday…
    http://www.skynews.com.au/news/top-stories/2017/10/10/tony-abbott-doubles-down-on-climate-position.html

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    pat

    surprisingly good piece by anti-Trump Rich Lowry:

    9 Oct: NY Post: Trump is overwriting Obama’s unlawful green schemes
    By Rich Lowry
    One by one, the artifacts of President Barack Obama’s rule by administrative fiat are tumbling.
    The latest is his signature Clean Power Plan that EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt says he’ll begin the arduous process of unwinding…

    The Clean Power Plan, which sought to reduce US carbon emissions to 32 percent below 2005 levels by 2030, was government by the administrative state on a scale that has never been attempted before. The EPA took a dubious reading of a portion of the Clean Air Act (Section III, which arguably prevented the agency from taking this action rather than empowered it to do so) and used it to mandate that the states adopt far-reaching plans to reduce carbon emissions, under threat of the loss of federal highway funds.

    The legal foundation of the Clean Power Plan was so rickety that the Supreme Court took the extraordinary step of blocking its implementation pending all the lawsuits against it.
    The presumption of the plan was jaw dropping. The EPA usually targets pollutants; carbon dioxide isn’t one (though the Supreme Court erroneously said it meets the definition in the case of Massachusetts vs. EPA).

    The EPA has always regulated specific power plants; in this scheme, it went “outside the fence” to mandate broader actions by the states, e.g., the adoption of quotas for renewable energy. The EPA once considered its mandate to be protecting clean air and water for Americans; with the Clean Power Plan, it sought to adjust the global thermostat for the good of all of humanity.

    The last gets to the absurdity of the plan on its own terms — it did virtually nothing to affect global warming. As Benjamin Zycher of the American Enterprise Institute points out, the Obama administration’s Climate Action Plan (which includes the Clean Power Plan) would reduce the global temperature by 15 one-thousands of a degree by 2100.

    The point wasn’t to fight climate change per se, but to signal our climate virtue in the hopes of catalyzing action by other nations and, not incidentally, to hobble the US coal industry in favor of more politically palatable sources of energy, namely wind and solar…

    If Congress had authorized the EPA to remake the nation’s energy economy we’d presumably be aware of it and recall an impassioned congressional debate over this radical and costly change. Here, the opposite is true. Congress has declined to enact laws limiting carbon emissions, including when Democrats held both houses of Congress under Obama…

    The rollback will encounter its own regulatory and legal obstacles but can be achieved more readily than if Obama had been able to (or bothered to) write a swath of his legacy into law.
    http://nypost.com/2017/10/09/trump-is-overwriting-obamas-unlawful-green-schemes/

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    pat

    9 Oct: Daily Item Pennsylvania: EPA rule change a relief for Valley coal business leaders
    By Justin Strawser
    The executive director of the Pennsylvania Anthracite Counsel had a simple response when asked about Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt declaring on Monday that the war on coal is over.
    “Thank God,” said Duane Feagley, of the Pottsville-based Counsel…
    Feagley said the news is long overdue.
    “It’s about time the federal government got off the backs of the coal industry,” he said. “It’s good for the region, and the independent power producers in the region.”…

    Bill Rosini, chairman of Coal Township-based Shamokin Carbon, said the news is welcome at his company. Shamokin Carbons is a leading global manufacturer of carbon and graphite products for many major industries including steel, glass, aerospace and semi-conductors. While they aren’t directly involved in the coal industry, they do use culm — coal byproducts — for production.
    “We were doing great until three years ago. It was very terrible,” Rosini said. “A lot of companies like ours went out of business due to the economy and environmental laws. We’re really bouncing back now.”
    Rosini said the environmental laws have hindered America’s growth, especially with China’s less stringent regulations and its emergence as an economic powerhouse…

    Dennis Molesevich Sr., co-owner of Molesevich General Construction Co. and Atlas Anthracite, both based in Atlas, said his business does a small amount of home heating, but mostly sells the anthracite coal to companies using it in steel, water filtration and a type of fuel called hydrate diesel…
    “Pennsylvania is so rich in energy: oil, natural gas, coal,” Molesevich said. “If we had our energy guys look at this, we’d be the Saudi Arabia of right here.”…

    “This president has tremendous courage,” Pruitt said Monday. “He put America first and said to the rest of the world we are going to say no and exit the Paris Accord. That was the right thing to do.”…
    http://www.dailyitem.com/news/local_news/epa-rule-change-a-relief-for-valley-coal-business-leaders/article_47bbcf5c-c926-5091-8eb0-526a1114b35a.html

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    pat

    read all:

    9 Oct: National Review Editorial: Goodbye, Clean Power Plan
    There were three good reasons to abandon the Clean Power Plan, and EPA administrator Scott Pruitt cited two of them in his decision, announced Monday, to rescind the cumbrous carbon dioxide rule.
    The first argument against the Clean Power Plan is cronyism. The Clean Power Plan was designed to disadvantage certain industries, namely coal producers and other fossil-fuel concerns, in the interest of certain other politically favored industries, namely alternative- and renewable-energy companies…

    If the Democrats want a far-ranging and disruptive new global-warming law, then let them campaign on that and try winning a few legislative elections. In the meantime, Pruitt has done the right thing by keeping the EPA working with the law we’ve got rather than the one some environmentalists wish we had.
    http://www.nationalreview.com/article/452470/clean-power-plan-scott-pruitt-announces-roll-back-rightly

    BBC didn’t find a single elected representative to express outrage, only unelected, tax-exempt, elitist “environmental groups:

    9 Oct: BBC: Trump administration to roll back Obama clean power rule
    The planned repeal of the Clean Power Plan has sparked outrage among environmental groups.
    The National Resources Defense Council (NRDC) threatened to sue the EPA if the plan is repealed while the Sierra Club has indicated it would fight any new rule that does not comply with the country’s air pollution laws.

    Mary Anne Hitt, the director of the Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal Campaign, said in a statement the Trump administration was “putting the safety of our communities at risk, and making it crystal clear they have no intention of safeguarding people from the very real, immediate dangers of climate change”.
    http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-41556342

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    pat

    10 Oct: Washington Examiner: EPA, do us all a favor and don’t pick favorites
    by Washington Examiner
    President Trump’s administration is killing one of former President Barack Obama’s most dangerous overreaches, the Clean Power Plan…

    You may recall when Democrats lost control of Senate after the 2014 elections, Obama belittled Congress and boasting that he’d go around it with executive orders — his “a pen and a phone.” The next year, his EPA issued the Clean Power Plan, seeking to impose by fiat what even a Democratic Congress had rejected, regulating greenhouse gas emissions by power plants…
    After the House passed the Waxman-Markey climate bill in 2009, Senate Democrats, even with a 60-vote supermajority, couldn’t get the bill across the finish line…

    The Supreme Court put a stay on the CPP, which was legally suspect, before it went into effect. Trump’s EPA this week announced it was pulling the plug on Obama’s rule.
    That’s a great move. The problem is that the Supreme Court ruling probably requires Trump to replace Obama’s rule with another rule. If the EPA is required to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from power plants, then Trump’s EPA needs to find the best way to do this.

    The obvious first principle for any new regulatory scheme is minimizing economic harm. Trump made it clear throughout the campaign that he saw the Clean Power Plan as a costly destroyer of jobs. His new plan should be written so as to relieve that burden as much as possible…READ ON
    http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/epa-do-us-all-a-favor-and-dont-pick-favorites/article/2636980

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    Tony Abbott’s speech at GWPF, plus Judith Sloan’s article in the Australian of the 4th.
    PDFs on my dropbox account:
    http://tinyurl.com/yc8r52l4
    http://tinyurl.com/y7tbetnu

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    MudCrab

    Sorry about the slightly off topic nature, but not sure if anyone else has seen this farce yet.

    This is from an email from the office SA Liberal leader Steven Marshall. They are also doubling down with a phone message campaign.

    So here, cut and pasted from the email sent out Tuesday afternoon, 10 October.

    —————————————————

    Today I have announced our Liberal Energy Solution delivering cheaper and more reliable energy for our State.

    Based on independent expert modelling, this solution will cut the average household’s electricity bill by over $300 a year once fully implemented.

    Key elements of the plan include:

    a $200 million Interconnection Fund to develop stronger connections between South Australia and the National Electricity Market, opening up huge opportunities to export our renewable energy
    a $100 million Household Storage Subsidy Scheme to provide grants averaging $2,500, helping install batteries in 40,000 homes
    a $50 million Grid Scale Storage Fund to ensure more reliable renewables by facilitating development of new storage technologies
    $30 million towards measures empowering consumers with the tools and financial incentives to manage their own demand

    Like and share on Facebook

    Click to Like and Share the Liberal Energy Solution

    The Liberal Energy Solution is better value for taxpayers and will ensure a stable, reliable market that will ease cost of living pressures on households.

    Only the Liberal Party will deliver the change South Australia needs. Over the coming months my energetic team and I will continue to share our vision to open the door to investment, cut red tape to create new jobs and, importantly, to put more money back into people’s pockets.

    To view our full energy solution please click here.

    Steven Marshall
    State Liberal Leader

    ————————- end cut/paste

    Cry for me.

    My state is dead.

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    pat

    9 Oct: NYT: E.P.A. Announces Repeal of Major Obama-Era Carbon Emissions Rule
    By LISA FRIEDMAN and BRAD PLUMER
    But Mr. Obama’s approach was controversial, because the E.P.A. assumed utilities could reduce emissions at individual plants by taking actions outside of those plants — say, by replacing coal plants with wind farms elsewhere. Industry groups and more than two dozen states challenged this move in court, arguing that the E.P.A. can look only at cleanup measures that can be undertaken at the plants themselves.
    Mr. Pruitt is proposing to repeal the Clean Power Plan on this basis…

    A new analysis by the research firm Rhodium Group estimated that United States electricity emissions are currently on track to fall 27 to 35 percent below 2005 levels by 2030, roughly in the range of what the Clean Power Plan originally envisioned, even if the regulation is repealed.
    But John Larsen, the author of the Rhodium Group analysis, estimated that if Mr. Obama’s policies had remained in place, as many as 21 states would have had to make deeper reductions than they are currently expected to do without the rule — including Texas, West Virginia, Georgia, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin — and emissions most likely would have fallen further than the 32 percent originally envisioned.
    “So for certain states,” Mr. Larsen wrote, “today’s announcement is a big deal.”

    ***Experts also note that the Clean Power Plan would have prevented a rebound in coal use in case natural gas unexpectedly became more expensive or various policies to promote renewable energy were blunted…
    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/09/climate/clean-power-plan.html

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    David Maddison

    Have you noticed howa lot of public spaces are now inadequately heated due to high “Green” energy prices (no doubt inadequately cooled in summer)?

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    pat

    10 Oct: Quadrant: A Reborn Abbott Comes Out Swinging
    The ousted PM disappointed many conservatives by folding on 18C, putting Malcolm Turnbull in charge of the ABC etc etc. His address in London suggests, were he to replace the usurper, it would be a new and improved leader and Coalition. Meanwhile, he’s infuriating all the right people
    SPEECH INTERSPERSED WITH RESPONSES FROM THE TWITTERATI, INCLUDING ABC’S LISA MILLAR…
    http://quadrant.org.au/opinion/qed/2017/10/reborn-abbott-comes-swinging/

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    Mark M

    Having fun on twitter with Roger Jones, from the conversation,

    “Researching climate risk and the economics of green infrastructure at the Victoria Institute for Strategic Economic Studies, Victoria University”.

    Quote: “Abbott does an interpretive dance through every denialist point he can muster.

    His talking point about the science being settled was actually coined to campaign against climate science, so …”

    https://twitter.com/climatrisk/status/917518589594296320

    Wait. 2007: The science is settled, Gore told the lawmakers.

    http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=9047642

    I predict i will be blocked.

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    Steve of Cornubia

    Turnbull simply wants to float a few ideas which – he hopes – will lift his polling for a while and thus avoid matching the run of bad polls he used to get rid of Abbott. He made the polls the sole issue to be used when deciding the fate of sitting PMs and so desperately needs even just a couple of good results, then he can avoid being handed the death warrant he signed himself, back in 2015.

    Once he has bagged a couple of good polling results and ‘reset the clock’, he can get back to implementing Labor’s agenda for them.

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    Dennis

    This was emailed to me, sorry no link …

    Matt Ridley
    The Times
    10:16AM October 9, 2017
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    The curse of modern politics is an epidemic of good intentions and bad outcomes. Policy after policy is chosen and voted on according to whether it means well, not whether it works. And the most frustrated politicians are those who keep trying to sell policies based on their efficacy, rather than their motives. It used to be possible to approach politics as a conversation between adults, and argue for unfashionable but effective medicine. In the 140-character world this is tricky (I speak from experience).
    The fact that it was Milton Friedman who said “one of the great mistakes is to judge policies and programs by their intentions rather than their results” rather proves the point. He was one of the most successful of all economists in getting results in terms of raising living standards, yet is widely despised today by both the left and centre as evil because he did not bother to do much virtue signalling.
    The commentator James Bartholomew popularised the term “virtue signalling” for those who posture empathetically but emptily. “Je suis Charlie” (but I won’t show cartoons of the prophet), “Refugees welcome” (but not in my home) or “Ban fossil fuels” (let’s not talk about my private jet). You see it everywhere. The policies unveiled at the [UK] Conservative Party conference show that the party is aware of this and (alas) embracing it. On student fees, housing costs and energy bills, the Tories proposed symbolic changes that would do nothing to solve the underlying problem, indeed might make them worse in some cases, but which at least showed they cared. I doubt it worked. They ended up sounding like pale imitations of Labour, or doing political dad-dancing.
    “Our election campaign portrayed us as a party devoid of values,” said Robert Halfon MP in June.
    “The Labour Party now has circa 700,000 members that want nothing from the Labour Party but views and values they agree with,” lamented Ben Harris-Quinney of the Bow Group last week. I think that what politicians mean by “values” is “intentions”.
    The forgiving of good intentions lies behind the double standard by which we judge totalitarians. Whereas fascists are rightly condemned in schools, newspapers and social media as evil, communists get a much easier ride, despite killing more people. “For all its flaws, the Communist revolution taught Chinese women to dream big,” read a New York Times headline last month.
    “For all its flaws, Nazi Germany did help bring Volkswagen and BMW to the car-buying public,” replied one wag on Twitter.
    Imagine anybody getting away with saying of Mussolini or Franco what John McDonnell and Jeremy Corbyn said of Fidel Castro or Hugo Chavez. The reason for this double standard is the apparently good intentions of communist dictators: unlike Nazis, communists were at least trying to make a workers’ paradise; they just got it wrong. Again and again and again.
    Though Jeremy Corbyn is a leading exponent, elevating intentions over outcomes is not entirely a monopoly of the left. It is something that the coalition government kept trying, in emulation of Tony Blair. Hugging huskies and gay marriage were pursued mainly for the signal they sent, rather than for the result they achieved. (Student loans, to be fair, were the opposite.) Indeed, George Osborne’s constant talk of austerity, while increasing spending in real terms, was an example of the gap between intention and outcome, albeit less sugar-coated.
    I can draw up a list as long as your arm of issues where the road to failure is paved with counter-productive benevolence. Gordon Brown’s 50p top tax rate brought in less tax from the richest. Banning fox hunting has led to the killing of more foxes. Opposition to badger culls made no ecological sense, for cattle, hedgehogs, people — or badger health. Mandating a percentage of GDP for foreign aid was a virtuous gesture that causes real inefficiency and corruption — and (unlike private philanthropy) also tended to transfer money from poor people in rich countries to rich people in poor countries.
    Or take organic farming, which has been shown repeatedly to produce trivial or zero health benefits, while any environmental benefits are grossly outweighed by the low yields that mean it requires taking more land from nature. Yet the BBC’s output on farming is dominated by coverage of the 2 per cent of farming that is organic, and is remorselessly obsequious. Why? Because organic farmers say they are trying to be nice to the planet.
    My objection to wind farms is based on the outcome of the policy, whereas most people’s support is based largely on the intention. There they stand, 300ft tall, visibly advertising their virtue as signals of our commitment to devotion to Gaia. The fact that each one requires 150 tonnes of coal to make, that it needs fossil fuel back-up for when the wind is not blowing, that it is subsidised disproportionately by poor people and the rewards go disproportionately to rich people, and that its impact on emissions is so small as to be unmeasurable — none of these matter. It’s the thought that counts.
    The Paris climate accord is one big virtue-signalling prayer, whose promises, if implemented, would make a difference in the temperature of the atmosphere in 2100 so small it is practically within the measuring error. But it’s the thought that counts. Donald Trump just does not care.
    One politician who has always refused to play the intention game is Nigel Lawson. Rather than rest on the laurels of his political career, he has devoted his retirement to exposing the gap between rhetoric and reality in two great movements: European integration and climate change mitigation. In his book An Appeal to Reason, he pointed out that on the UN’s official forecasts, climate change, unchecked, would mean the average person will be 8.5 times as rich in 2100 as today, rather than 9.5 times if we stopped the warming. And to achieve this goal we are to punish the poor of today with painful policies? This isn’t “taking tough decisions”; this is prescribing chemotherapy for a cold.
    Yet the truth is, Lord Lawson and I and others like us have so far largely lost the argument on climate change entirely on the grounds of intentions. Being against global warming is a way of saying you care about the future. Not being a headless chicken — however well argued your case — leads to accusations you do not care.
    The Times

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    Dennis

    TONY ABBOTT
    “Dare to doubt”

    Thank you for giving me the same platform that you’ve previously given to fellow Australians John Howard and George Pell. I will strive to be worthy of their example and their friendship; to offer a common sense way through the climate conflict; and, also, to place this particular issue in the broader search for practical wisdom now taking place across the Western world.

    It would be wrong to underestimate the strengths of the contemporary West. By objective standards, people have never had better lives. Yet our phenomenal wealth and our scientific and technological achievements rest on values and principles that have rarely been more widely challenged.

    To a greater or lesser extent, in most Western countries, we can’t keep our borders secure; we can’t keep our industries intact; and we can’t preserve a moral order once taken for granted. Eventually, something will crystalize out of this age of disruption but in the meantime we could be entering a period of national and even civilizational decline.

    In Australia, we’ve had ten years of disappointing government. It’s not just the churn of prime ministers that now rivals Italy’s, the internal divisions and the policy confusion that followed a quarter century of strong government under Bob Hawke and John Howard. It’s the institutional malaise. We have the world’s most powerful upper house: a Senate where good government can almost never secure a majority. Our businesses campaign for same sex marriage but not for economic reform. Our biggest company, BHP, the world’s premier miner, lives off the coal industry that it now wants to disown. And our oldest university, Sydney, now boasts that its mission is “unlearning”.

    Of course, to be an Australian is still to have won the lottery of life, and there’s yet no better place to live and work. But there’s a nagging sense that we’re letting ourselves down and failing to reach anything like our full potential.

    We are not alone in this. The Trump ascendancy, however it works out, was a popular revolt against politics-as-usual. Brexit was a rejection of the British as well as of the European establishments. Yes, the centrist, Macron, won in France but only by sidelining the parties that had ruled from the start of the Fifth Republic. And while the German chancellor was re-elected, seemingly it’s at the head of an unstable coalition after losing a quarter of her vote.

    Everywhere, there’s a breakdown of public trust between voters and their leaders for misdiagnosing problems, for making excuses about who’s to blame, and for denying the damage that’s been done.

    Since the Global Financial Crisis, at least in the West, growth has been slow, wages stagnant, opportunities limited, and economic and cultural disruption unprecedented. Within countries and between them, old pecking orders are changing. Civilizational self-doubt is everywhere; we believe in everyone but ourselves; and everything is taken seriously except that which used to be.

    Just a few years ago, history was supposed to have ended in the triumph of the Western liberal order. Yet far from becoming universal, Western values are less and less accepted even in the West itself. We still more or less accept that every human being is born with innate dignity; with rights, certainly, but we’re less sure about the corresponding duties.

    We still accept the golden rule of human conduct: to treat others as we would have them treat us – or to use the Gospel formula to “love your neighbour as you love yourself” – but we’re running on empty.

    In Britain and Australia, scarcely 50 per cent describe themselves as Christian, down from 90 per cent a generation back. For decades, we’ve been losing our religious faith but we’re fast losing our religious knowledge too. We’re less a post-Christian society than a non-Christian, or even an anti- Christian one. It hasn’t left us less susceptible to dogma, though, because we still need things to believe in and causes to fight for; it’s just that believers can now be found for almost anything and everything.

    Climate change is by no means the sole or even the most significant symptom of the changing interests and values of the West. Still, only societies with high levels of cultural amnesia – that have forgotten the scriptures about man created “in the image and likeness of God” and charged with “subduing the earth and all its creatures” – could have made such a religion out of it.

    There’s no certain way to regain cultural self-confidence. The heart of any recovery, though, has to be an honest facing of facts and an insistence upon intellectual rigour. More than ever, the challenge of leadership is to say what you mean and do what you say. The lesson I’ve taken from being in government, and then out of it, is simply to speak my mind. The risk, when people know where you stand, is losing their support. The certainty, when people don’t know where you stand, is losing their respect.

    Of course, we’re all nostalgic for the days when governments and oppositions could agree on the big issues; but pleading for bi-partisanship won’t create it. As my government showed on border protection policy, the only way to create a new consensus is to argue the case, to make a decision, and then to let the subsequent facts speak for themselves.

    The modern world, after all, is not the product of a successful search for consensus. It’s what’s emerged from centuries of critical enquiry and hard clash. Without the constant curiosity and endless questioning that has driven our scientists and engineers, and the constant striving for improvement that’s long guided our planners and policy makers, there’d be no cures for disease, no labour-saving appliances, no sanitation, no urban improvement, no votes for women, no respect for minorities; in other words, no modern world.

    That may not actually bother some green activists whose ideal is an Amish existence, only without reference to God. But it should bother anyone and everyone who wants longer, safer, more comfortable and more prosperous lives.

    Beware the pronouncement, “the science is settled”. It’s the spirit of the Inquisition, the thought- police down the ages. Almost as bad is the claim that “99 per cent of scientists believe” as if scientific truth is determined by votes rather than facts.

    There are laws of physics; there are objective facts; there are moral and ethical truths. But there is almost nothing important where no further enquiry is needed. What the “science is settled” brigade want is to close down investigation by equating questioning with superstition. It’s an aspect of the wider weakening of the Western mind which poses such dangers to the world’s future.

    Physics suggests, all other things being equal, that an increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide would indeed warm the planet. Even so, the atmosphere is an almost infinitely complex mechanism that’s far from fully understood.

    Palaeontology indicates that over millions of years there have been warmer periods and cooler periods that don’t correlate with carbon dioxide concentrations. The Jurassic warm period and the ice ages occurred without any human contribution at all. The medieval warm period when crops were grown in Greenland and the mini-ice age when the Thames froze over occurred well before industrial activities added to atmospheric carbon dioxide.

    Prudence and respect for the planet would suggest taking care not lightly to increase carbon dioxide emissions; but the evidence suggests that other factors such as sun spot cycles and oscillations in the Earth’s orbit are at least as important for climate change as this trace gas – which, far from being pollution, is actually essential for life to exist.

    Certainly, no big change has accompanied the increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration over the past century from roughly 300 to roughly 400 parts per million or from 0.03 to 0.04 per cent.

    Contrary to the breathless assertions that climate change is behind every weather event, in Australia, the floods are not bigger, the bushfires are not worse, the droughts are not deeper or longer, and the cyclones are not more severe than they were in the 1800s. Sometimes, they do more damage but that’s because there’s more to destroy, not because their intensity has increased. More than 100 years of photography at Manly Beach in my electorate does not suggest that sea levels have risen despite frequent reports from climate alarmists that this is imminent.

    It may be that a tipping point will be reached soon and that the world might start to warm rapidly but so far reality has stubbornly refused to conform to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s computer modelling. Even the high-priests of climate change now seem to concede that there was a pause in warming between the 1990s and 2014.

    So far, though, there’s no concession that their models might require revision even though unadjusted data suggests that the 1930s were actually the warmest decade in the United States and that temperatures in Australia have only increased by 0.3 degrees over the past century, not the 1 degree usually claimed.

    The growing evidence that records have been adjusted, that the impact of urban heat islands has been downplayed, and that data sets have been slanted in order to fit the theory of dangerous anthropogenic global warming does not make it false; but it should produce much caution about basing drastic action upon it.

    Then there’s the evidence that higher concentrations of carbon dioxide (which is a plant food after all) are actually greening the planet and helping to lift agricultural yields. In most countries, far more people die in cold snaps than in heat waves, so a gradual lift in global temperatures, especially if it’s accompanied by more prosperity and more capacity to adapt to change, might even be beneficial.

    In what might be described as Ridley’s paradox, after the distinguished British commentator: at least so far, it’s climate change policy that’s doing harm; climate change itself is probably doing good; or at least, more good than harm.

    Australia, for instance, has the world’s largest readily available supplies of coal, gas and uranium, yet thanks to a decade of policy based more on green ideology than common sense, we can’t be sure of keeping the lights on this summer – it’s akin to Saudi Arabia being in a petrol drought, and in the policy-induced shift from having the world’s lowest power prices to amongst the highest, our manufacturing industry has lost its one, big comparative economic advantage.

    About 20 years ago, in Australia, limiting carbon dioxide emissions first became a goal of public policy. It was the Howard government, back in 1997, that originally introduced the Renewable Energy Target, a stealth carbon tax, requiring energy suppliers to source a percentage of their power from new renewable generation. But in those far off days, it was just 2 per cent.

    During the energy discussions around the Howard cabinet table, I recall thinking “why not encourage more solar hot water systems to reduce power use” and “why not incentivise the installation of solar panels to help power people’s homes”?

    Way back in the 1980s, in my final provost’s collection at The Queen’s College, Lord Blake had observed: “Mr Abbott needs to temper his robust common sense with a certain philosophic doubt”. If only more of us had doubted sooner and realised sooner how easy it was with renewable power to have too much of a good thing!

    Unsurprisingly, a conservative cabinet did indeed respond to farmers’ worries about the drought then gripping eastern Australia; and the public’s then eagerness to support environmental gestures with other people’s money. We thought we could reduce emissions, or at least limit their increase, without much disruption to everyday life, hence these gestures to the zeitgeist. Where the subsidy was modest and the impact on the power system minimal, our thinking ran, why not accommodate the feel-good urge to be “responsible global citizens”?

    In its last few months, the Howard government even agreed in-principle to support an emissions trading scheme. But Howard was shrewd enough to know how the most important consequences of any policy were often the unintended ones. His government’s refusal to ratify the Kyoto climate change treaty, even though we’d secured a good deal for Australia, showed his caution about the impact of emissions reduction on power prices and the wider economy.

    For the incoming Labor Prime Minister after 2007, though, climate change was nothing less than the “greatest moral challenge of our time”. The Rudd-Gillard government believed in an emissions trading scheme, no ifs, no buts, and in a ten-fold increase in the mandatory use of renewables.

    For a while, the Liberal-National opposition was inclined to go along with it. My own leaning for the first year or so was not to oppose it; but my doubts about the theory of climate change were growing and my sense that an ETS would turn out to be a “great big new tax on everything” was hardening.

    To a party audience in country Victoria in October 2009, I observed that the so-called settled science of climate change was “absolute crap”; and after winning the opposition leadership had a secret party room ballot to oppose an ETS because it was not our job to enter into weak compromises with a bad government.

    As it happened, the 2010 election was more about power prices than about saving the planet. Under great political pressure, then Prime Minister Julia Gillard, declared “there will be no carbon tax under the government I lead”. But early in 2011, as part of her minority government’s deal with the Greens, she committed to a carbon tax that would put wholesale power prices up by 40 per cent.

    The 2013 election was a referendum on Labor’s carbon tax – as well as Labor’s complete loss of control over our maritime borders – with a thumping win to the Liberal-National Coalition.

    In July 2014, the Abbott government abolished the carbon tax, saving the average household about $500 a year. In early 2015, we reduced the Renewable Energy Target from 28 to 23 per cent. It wasn’t enough, but it was the best that we could get through the Senate. My cabinet always had some ministers focussed on jobs and cost of living; and others more concerned with emissions reduction, even though our contribution to global emissions was barely one per cent.

    Inevitably, our Paris agreement to a 26 to 28 per cent emissions reduction was a compromise based on the advice that we could achieve it largely through efficiencies, without additional environmental imposts, using the highly successful emissions reduction fund; because, as I said at the time, “the last thing we want to do is strengthen the environment (but) damage our economy”.

    At last year’s election, the government chose not to campaign on power prices even though Labor was promising a 50 per cent Renewable Energy Target (requiring a $50 billion over-build of wind farms) and a 45 per cent reduction in emissions by 2030 (requiring a new carbon tax). After a net gain of 25 seats at the previous two elections, when we had campaigned on power prices, we had a net loss of 14 when we didn’t.

    And subsequent events have made the politics of power once more the central battleground between and within the two main parties. Although manufacturing, agriculture and transport are also large carbon dioxide emitters, the politics of emissions reduction has always focussed on power generation because shifting to renewables has always been more saleable to voters than closing down industry, giving up cars and not eating beef.

    As a badge of environmental virtue, the South Australian state Labor government had been boasting that, on average, almost 50 per cent of its power was wind-generated – although at any moment it could vary from almost zero to almost 100 per cent. It had even ostentatiously blown up its one coal- fired power station.

    In September last year, though, the wind blew so hard that the turbines had to shut down – and the inter-connector with Victoria and its reliable coal-fired power failed too. For 24 hours, there was a state wide blackout. For nearly two million people, the lights were off, cash registers didn’t work, traffic lights went down, lifts stopped, and patients were sent home from hospitals.

    Throughout last summer, there were further blackouts and brownouts across eastern Australia requiring hundreds of millions in repairs to the plant of energy-intensive industries. Despite this, in a display of virtue signalling, to flaunt its environmental credentials (and to boost prices for its other coal-fired plants), last March the French-government part-owned multinational, Engie, closed down the giant Hazelwood coal-fired station that had supplied a quarter of Victoria’s power.

    The Australian Energy Market Operator is now sufficiently alarmed to have just issued an official warning of further blackouts this summer in Victoria and South Australia and severe medium term power shortfalls. But in yet more virtue-signalling, energy giant AGL is still threatening to close the massive Liddell coal-fired power station in NSW and replace it with a subsidised solar farm and a much smaller gas-fired power station relying on gas supplies that don’t currently exist.

    Were it not rational behaviour based on irrational government policy, this deliberate elimination of an essential service could only be described as a form of economic self-harm.

    Hydro aside, renewable energy should properly be referred to as intermittent and unreliable power. When the wind doesn’t blow and the sun doesn’t shine, the power doesn’t flow. Wind and solar power are like sailing ships; cheaper than powered boats, to be sure, but we’ve stopped using sail for transport because it couldn’t be trusted to turn up on time.

    Because the weather is unpredictable, you never really know when renewable power is going to work. Its marginal cost is low but so is its reliability, so in the absence of industrial scale batteries, it always needs matching capacity from dependable coal, gas, hydro, or nuclear energy. This should always have been obvious.

    Also now apparent is the system instability and the perverse economics that subsidised renewables on a large scale have injected into our power supply. Not only is demand variable but there’s a vast and unpredictable difference between potential and dispatch-able capacity at any one time. Having to turn coal fired power stations up or down as the wind changes makes them much less profitable even though coal remains by far the cheapest source of reliable power.

    A market that’s driven by subsidies rather than by economics always fails. Subsidy begets subsidy until the system collapses into absurdity. In Australia’s case, having subsidised renewables, allegedly to save the planet; we’re now faced with subsidising coal, just to keep the lights on.

    We have got ourselves into this mess because successive federal governments have tried to reduce emissions rather than to ensure reliable and affordable power; because, rather than give farmers a fairer return, state governments have given in to green lobbyists and banned or heavily restricted gas exploration and extraction; and because shareholder activists have scared power companies out of new investment in fossil fuel power generation, even though you can’t run a modern economy without it.

    In the short term, to avoid blackouts, we have to get mothballed or under-utilised gas back into the system.

    In the medium term, there must be – first – no subsidies, none, for new intermittent power (and a freeze on the RET should be no problem if renewables are as economic as the boosters claim); second, given the nervousness of private investors, there must be a government-built coal-fired power station to overcome political risk; third, the gas bans must go; and fourth, the ban on nuclear power must go too in case a dry country ever needs base load power with zero emissions.

    The government is now suggesting that there might not be a new Clean Energy Target after all. There must not be – and we still need to deal with what’s yet to come under the existing target.

    In the longer term, we need less theology and more common sense about emissions reduction. It matters but not more than everything else. As Clive James has suggested in a celebrated recent essay, we need to get back to evidence based policy rather than “policy based evidence”.

    Even if reducing emissions really is necessary to save the planet, our effort, however Herculean, is barely-better-than-futile; because Australia’s total annual emissions are exceeded by just the annual increase in China’s.

    There’s a veneer of rational calculation to emissions reduction but underneath it’s about “doing the right thing”. Environmentalism has managed to combine a post-socialist instinct for big government with a post-Christian nostalgia for making sacrifices in a good cause. Primitive people once killed goats to appease the volcano gods. We’re more sophisticated now but are still sacrificing our industries and our living standards to the climate gods to little more effect.

    So far, climate change policy has generated new taxes, new subsidies and new restrictions in rich countries; and new demands for more aid from poor countries. But for the really big emitters, China and India, it’s a first world problem. Between them, they’re building or planning more than 800 new coal-fired power stations – often using Australian coal – with emissions, on average, 30 per cent lower than from our own ageing generators.

    Unsurprisingly, the recipients of climate change subsidies and climate change research grants think action is very urgent indeed. As for the general public, of course saving the planet counts – until the bills come in and then the humbug detector is switched on.

    Should Australia close down its steel industry; watch passively while its aluminium industry moves offshore to places less concerned about emissions; export coal, but not use it ourselves; and deliberately increase power prices for people who can’t install their own solar panels and batteries? Of course not, but these are the inevitable consequences of continuing current policies.

    That’s the reality no one has wanted to face for a long time: that we couldn’t reduce emissions without also hurting the economy; that’s the inconvenient truth that can now no longer be avoided.

    The only rational choice is to put Australian jobs and Australia’s standard of living first; to get emissions down but only as far as we can without putting prices up. After two decades’ experience of the very modest reality of climate change but the increasingly dire consequences of the policy to deal with it, anything else would be a dereliction of duty as well as a political death wish.

    I congratulate the Global Warming Policy Foundation for your commitment to rational inquiry; your insistence that the theory must be made to fit the facts, rather than the other way round; your concern to do good, rather than just to seem good; and for the hope I share with you: that, in the end, the best policy will turn out to be the best politics.

    I’m reminded of the story of a man randomly throwing pieces of paper from the window of a train. Eventually his companion asked him why he did it. It keeps the elephants down, he said. “But there are no elephants here”, his companion replied. “Precisely; it’s a very successful method”.

    A tendency to fear catastrophe is ingrained in the human psyche. Looking at the climate record over millions of years, one day it will probably come; whatever we do today won’t stop it, and when it comes, it will have little to do with the carbon dioxide emissions of mankind.

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      Will Janoschka

      Physics suggests,Post modern academic climastro-physicists (97%) claim, all other things being equal, that an increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide would indeed warm the planet.

      There is no valid scientific basis for such a claim! :-( Instead a valid indictment of the whole modern University system.
      All the best!-will-

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        KinkyKeith

        And that’s the whole thing in a nutshell.

        The fact that they use a 100 year old conjecture by Arrhenius, which he later rejected, as the basis their “science” tells how flimsy their science is.

        KK

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          Will Janoschka

          Fat Svante stomped from the room, when challenged by J. C. Maxwell’s student, J. Poynting, and G. Kirchhoff’s student M. Planck, along with L. Boltzmann, in the presence of Lord Kelvin! Fun times. :-) Science advances one funeral at a time! Some come back as infants an have to do it all over again.
          All the best!-will-

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    Howdy all -

    This showed up in Bloomberg this morning. Don’t know if someone already linked to it. An explanation why Oz has the highest energy prices. Answer (as you know): Government. h/t: InstaPundit. Cheers -

    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-10-05/how-energy-rich-australia-ended-up-with-world-s-priciest-power

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      KinkyKeith

      There seems to be an error in the Bloomberg article.

      I understood that the Australian consumers were paying the highest prices and the gas exports were much cheaper for overseas exports.

      ?

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