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In a fake free market 2000MW = 1000MW and Liddell coal is worth more destroyed than sold

The Australian Fake Free market is so screwed. What asset is worth more in the trash-can than sold to a willing bidder?

Everyone is talking about Liddell. The old coal plant is on the chopping block in 2022 and we can see the electricity price rise coming from here.

People in Australia are going without their veggies to pay for electricity. Liddell coal plant makes cheap electricity (like old coal plants everywhere). This is a problem that would solve itself if not for Malcolm Turnbull, the RET, and the AEMO. It takes a lot of money and whole fleets of bureaucrats to stop the free market fixing this by default.

AGL is the largest coal-fired producer in Australia, but it’s also the largest generator in toto and the largest  investor in renewable energy on the Australian Stock Exchange. Spot the conflict of interest? The company controls 30% of the generation in our two largest states, and 40% in South Australia. The man in charge of AGL – Andy Vesey –  formerly of New York, earns $6.9 million a year, and can probably afford to pay his own electricity bill. But as Tony Cox points out, he has surrounded himself with Gore-trainees and Get-Up and ALP staffers. Not a great combination for a man controlling something like a fifth (more?) of our generating power. Not surprisingly, after the NSW government practically gave the old coal plant away for free to AGL in 2014, it appears the company has been running Liddell into the ground.

Rather than being incompetent, this is no doubt part of the plan, and an advantage for shareholders in the new tribal world of Good-Lectrons:Bad-Lectrons. After a few more years of AGL management, it won’t be worth taking over.

When 2000 is equal to 1000

Another example of “these people are not good with numbers”: AGL plans to replace 2250MW of reliable coal with 990 – 2050MW of random unreliables. Thanks to Judith Sloan at Catallaxy:

Generation Capacity Liddell, replacements.

What could possibly go wrong?

Can someone ask Vesey to explain how this renewable solution will make electricity cheaper when supply shortages will be more likely, a cheap generator is taken out of the bidding, average bids will rise, and short-supply-spikes will surely be more likely?

The best coal plant is a dead one?

Three years after buying two large coal assets that generated 11% of the total Australian grid, AGL’s new boss said no one would buy coal.  Publicly trashing the value of their own assets is not normally the way CEOs attract investors or start a negotiation.

“We do not believe that any private capital will invest in new coal plants,” CEO Andrew Vesey told the assembled analysts. “Someone may say they want to, but that does not mean they will.”

So much for that theory. No one wants coal except for the people building 1600 new plants in 62 countries. Three companies have already offered to buy Liddell. Alinta is suggesting $1 billion:

Alinta Energy has flagged a $1 billion offer to take control of the Liddell power station as AGL faces mounting political pressure to sell the ageing coal-fired plant in NSW to extend its life by up to seven years.

AGL ‘s excuses not to take that offer are “creative”:

But AGL resisted the building pressure yesterday, saying it was relying on Liddell to generate power for its customers until 2022. “We will require its infrastructure for our replacement plans into the future. We have received no offers for Liddell,” AGL said. “AGL received an approach from Alinta last night expressing an interest in entering negotiations to acquire the Liddell power station … Should a formal offer for Liddell be received, it would be given consideration in order to meet our obligations to customers and shareholders.”

Bankers explains AGL won’t sell Liddell because then electricity will get cheaper:

But research from analysts at JPMorgan yesterday said it was unlikely the deal would ever eventuate due to a number of market and logistical reasons.

Selling the power station to Alinta would hurt the wholesale prices that AGL can charge for energy from its other assets, the analysts said, while also helping a rival that is determined to eat into AGL’s market share. Operationally, Liddell and AGL’s nearby Bayswater power station are supplied with coal from a single coal loader and are subject to a number of contracts that would need to be unwound.

“Extending (Liddell) would likely have a negative impact on wholesale prices, and therefore the value of the rest of AGL’s generation assets; it would support the growth of a competitor in electricity retailing; and a separation from Bayswater would be complicated with the two assets intrinsically linked,” JPMorgan said.  – Paul Garvey, The Australian.

Lower wholesale prices means “good news for customers” and “bad news for expensive retailers” — like owners of renewable generators. Many are blaming the privatisation of an electricity generator, “a national asset”, but the real crime was nationalizing our electricity market and Big-Government demands that we use our generators to cool the climate.

There’s immense political pressure, but AGL won’t sell:

“AGL is under immense political pressure but the Australian government at this stage does not appear to have the power to force a change, with the ACCC appearing to indicate that it is entitled to close the asset and AEMO indicating if (AGL’s post-Liddell) plan is adopted the shortfall will be covered,” Macquarie said.

Here’s a little history and background on what’s becoming an issue of major national interest.

Liddell – bought for nothing  — zero dollar value

AGL made it clear to investors in 2014 that it had acquired the 2,000MW Liddell generator for free from the NSW government, bundled in with the Bayswater Plant like a toy with a McHappy Meal.

AGL, Purchase Liddell, Bayswater, investor.

AGL Investor Presentation 2014

At the time, AGL valued Liddell as a very low coal electricity supplier generating at $20/MWh. (That hasn’t changed in 2017. See page 6). Two cents a kilowatt hour?

When cheap bidders are lost, the winning bid goes up

The AGL investor presentation in 2014 pointed out that both old black coal plants in NSW were among the cheapest electricity providers on the Australian national grid. SRMC means Short Run Marginal Cost. If we can get rid of a few more of those cheaper megawatt providers, the “winning” bid prices will keep rising up that curve. And in Australia, every successful bidder gets the price asked by the top winning bidder. On this graph below, with Liddell gone, each time National demand hits 25,000MW instead of 27,000MW, higher bids will win. This is what caused the step up when Hazelwood closed.

Low Cost coal, 2014, AGL, Liddell.

Liddell is the third “brown” supplier from the left.  * Not graphed, most diesel plants costing more than $350/MWh

 

Here’s how to ruin a power station:

In the worst instances, three times the plant’s equipment had oil supply failures that led to turbines grinding to a halt in about 10 minutes compared with 40 minutes under normal conditions, “basically wrecking” the machinery.

The engineer also noted how Liddell routinely has at least one of its four units out of operation, and that half of the four units were suddenly unavailable on February 10 – the first day of a record NSW heatwave – due to leaks in boiler tubes. That poor performance was despite its turbines being replaced about a decade ago.

 A new group in Australia has formed to talk some sense and call for Hazelwood 2.0 and an extension of Liddell. Good on The Monash Forum. I’ll be talking more about that soon and the incredible furor their sensible suggestions have raised.

Ownership of the generation on the Australian Grid:

AGL is the green one “on top”.

 

The rise of “gentailers” – vertically integrated major players

We haven’t even started talking about the problems of having a few big players controling one market. The AEMO has this to say about “Vertical Intergration” which rose from 15% of the national generation to 47% in the last nine years:

.5.1 Vertical integration

While governments structurally separated the energy supply industry in the 1990s, many retailers later reintegrated with generators to form ‘gentailers’ that own portfolios in both generation and retail. Three retailers—AGL Energy, Origin Energy and EnergyAustralia—supply 70 per cent of retail electricity customers in the NEM. The same entities expanded their market share in NEM generation capacity from 15 per cent in 2009 to 48 per cent in 2017. Vertical integration allows generators and retailers to insure internally against price risk in the wholesale market, reducing their need to participate in hedge (contract) markets. But reduced participation in contract markets reduces liquidity in those markets, posing a potential barrier to entry and expansion for generators and retailers that are not vertically integrated.  – AEMO State of the Market report 2017

 

*  [PS: The fine print in the graph in the middle "low cost NEM" notes that it excludes plants with SMRC costs above $350/MWh which are Anagaston , Snuggery, Port Lincoln, Mt Stuart and Mackay (all versions of diesel/oil/kero generation). Just in case you were wondering. Diesel backup comes at a savage price.]

 

 

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Rating: 9.7/10 (81 votes cast)
In a fake free market 2000MW = 1000MW and Liddell coal is worth more destroyed than sold, 9.7 out of 10 based on 81 ratings

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156 comments to In a fake free market 2000MW = 1000MW and Liddell coal is worth more destroyed than sold

  • #
    robert rosicka

    This could be the fight we need to have so people can see what’s going on .

    271

    • #
      Geoff

      Simplest way to fix this is to make directors accountable with criminal convictions.

      151

      • #
        Johnincq

        No the easiest way, is to drop the RET and taxpayer subsidies to renewable energy. AGL wont be able to sell their expensive power and make a profit.

        231

    • #
      cohenite

      Great analysis Jo. Vesey is firmly in the same category as the greens/abc: actively working against the interests of Australia. Turnbull will NOT do anything about him because he believes in alarmism and renewables and he has NO understanding of what this will do to the average person. Remember Turnbull is the person who introduced the $15 light-bulb.

      Energy and electricity is the number 1 political issue in this country. Shorten will worsen it and Turnbull doesn’t understand it. One of the smaller parties has to get on this and push it for all it is worth.

      242

      • #
        el gordo

        Too late for the smaller parties, the best way forward is to support the Coalition ginger group.

        40

      • #
        Anto

        Yep, and when Vesey has destroyed our electricity market and our childrens’ futures for a generation, he’ll just shrug his shoulders, crack a smile and return to the USA.

        10

        • #
          ColA

          YES with a double bonus, for achieving all (or none?) of his KPI’s.
          It’s the people who chose him we should be scrutinizing and the AGL board for approving his tenure, they must have known his leanings? Did they employ him with intent? Or were they just dumb ass ignorant???
          Either way Vesey is certainly not the only problem in AGL.

          AGL has clearly shown complete contempt for the Australian public, OUR only reply is simple = find a better provider!

          00

  • #
    Kinky Keith

    Don’t blame Vessey.

    He’s using the system legally to do what all CEOs are hired to do: maximise profits.

    The question that really deserves an answer is how did the simple process of providing the community and business/manufacturing with electricity become privatised and loaded with this financial burden.

    Our country’s future has been deliberately ruined.

    No way we can be a manufacturing or “smart technology” country when we have world record electricity charges.

    KK

    450

    • #
      Dennis

      I agree, companies are for profit for shareholders and that is free market capitalism.

      But in this energy crisis example the market is being manipulated by governments, e.g. subsidies and RET without which the “transition to renewable energy” would not be possible because shareholders would not approve of companies investing in so called renewables.

      The EV revolution has started and will become another exercise in cost of living increasing and more profiteering. The federal government has already started the subsidies with a gift of $100 million to Macquarie Bank Leasing to promote EV to fleet operators. Next will be taxpayer’s monies paying for recharging stations. But who will pay for the dismantling of liquid fuel stations and infrastructure, and ICEV banned by order of government?

      Two stroke ICE banned from sale from 2019.

      It is deliberate economic vandalism and government approved and supported profiteering to add weight to the wrecking ball.

      And look at the who’s who of people and their background mentioned above.

      181

      • #
        Kinky Keith

        I’m not saying it’s right, I agree with you, the whole business is disgusting and there are people who really should be held accountable but that won’t happen.
        Just that one example of $100,000,000 given to a bank to manage. At a 0.5% rate, the “management” fee alone would be half a million dollars. On top of that, there would be the operational costs of the scheme.
        This whole business of green environmentalism is like a cancer in our society.

        Nobody should be deluded about the purpose of this cause, it is about personal power and cream.

        The serfs are just collateral damage.

        KK

        240

        • #
          Yonniestone

          We’re with AGL KK and really wanted to up and leave them purely based on their anti-coal pro renewables baloney but after looking into all the other energy providers in relation to their “green credentials” etc.. they are all almost as hypocritical as AGL with the added bonus of poor customer service.

          I actually went as far as calling and emailing them to voice my concerns outlining many of the facts in Jo’s article above with the “we value customer feedback and will forward it to the appropriate department” response so no for automatic results but yes to a possible meme to spread outside the company if enough people do it.

          150

    • #
      lance

      Were I the suspicious sort (and, I am), I should look carefully at these points:

      AFL half year profits are up 91% Jun-Dec 2017 compared to previous year. “The big energy utility and retailer AGL has reported an almost doubling of its first-half net profit driven by its wholesale market business.”

      Ref: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-02-08/agl-half-year-profit/9407330

      An 86 page AU Supreme court ruling (Victoria) in 2001:
      http://www.esc.vic.gov.au/wp-content/uploads/archives/29141/3429_DecisionTXUvsORGMay01.pdf

      In essence, TXU claimed that the means of calculating costs, profits, returns, was improperly derived from the CPI–X mandated formula adopted during deregulation by the Office of the Regulator General and, moving away from guaranteed rate of return and, in effect, the court said that they had their chance to modify their position and missed out. The real crux of the decision is how it lines out the method by which ( Price – X ) is used to set rates by the transmission and generation sector of the electricity grid. Maximize Price, Minimize X and you get a whopping big profit for 5 years. X is supposed to be the external cost factors not related to origination Price. In my mind, I should think that the Citizenry ought inquire as to what X is including these days. X ought include a negative price impact for the inefficiency of Unreliables upon the Generator and fair cost elements for Unreliables use of the transmission system.

      The CPI element and the X element are submitted for approval for a 5 year period. How odd that Lidell was bought in 2014, CPI resubmitted in 2015 and running through 2020, and Lidell is slated for termination in 2022, after a revision in the CPI will be submitted in 2020.

      My suspicion is that AGL is “playing the system” to maximize Price, minimize external elements, and essentially is gaming the system at both ends (thermal generation and unreliables). Allowing Liddell to fail would drive up the spot cost paid to Bayswater.

      Then of course, I might be mistaken.

      160

      • #
        lance

        Oops. AGL, not AFL. And, AGL owns BOTH Liddell and Bayswater.

        70

        • #
          Dennis

          NSW Labor Government, Premier Keneally, sold AGL Limited Bayswater and Liddell with the latter virtually no extra cost.

          50

          • #
            toorightmate

            Which explains why Bill Shorten likes her – she’s dumb.

            31

          • #
            Kinky Keith

            Maybe true at “no extra cost” but we must assure ourselves that there was “no extra consideration”.

            Sometimes things are out of sight.

            And when out of sight, they are also out of mind.

            KK

            10

  • #
    yarpos

    Really it shouldnt even be 1000 in the 2000=1000 comment.

    In the table, Stages 2+3 Wind and solar. Installed 750MW Capacity 40-600MW.

    How can the low number not be zero? night time, no wind, it happens

    How can the top number be 600? Capacity factor for wind and solar is about 30-40%. Going with the optimistic figure (that seems to be what they do) that equates to 300MW

    A realistic range would be 0-300MW if you are planning for periods of high demand and you actually want to have power, vs exercising wishful thinking for a report.

    181

    • #
      RickWill

      The realistic range is 0-600MW. It is important to recognise that a wind generator can achieve rated capacity. That means it can destroy 600MW of base load demand for a slow response dispatchable generator that has to be replaced with fast response gas or hydro.

      The largest cost factor for intermittent generation is the destruction of base load demand on the grid and the economics of slow response coal generators. They should never have been allowed to connect to the grid without being able to offer dispatchable generation.

      The only way this will not end badly is for the Liberal party to come out with a clear policy to lower electricity costs. The only way that can be done is to eliminate subsidies for wind and solar. Let them sink. Turnbull is so conflicted that he will never do that.

      The fact that SA chucked out Labor in Weatherll’s “referendum on renewable energy” should embolden the Libs. Imagine what halving the cost of electricity would do for the economy.

      There is so much compelling evidence that wind and solar increase grid costs that a well run add campaign should be influential. Maybe a photo of Malcolm Turnbul’s 11kW of solar panels and the suggestion he makes money from his panels would be enough to kick him out:
      https://www.google.com.au/maps/@-33.8651663,151.2544294,80m/data=!3m1!1e3
      He has subsidised panels and battery so makes money from electricity that is paid for by poor consumers who cannot afford solar panels. The Libs would get support from a lot of battlers.

      If a market is so distorted by government decree that otherwise uneconomic assets can make money the owners should be aware that the government can change its mind; read get booted out and replaced.

      180

      • #
        Dennis

        The Colaition Government led by Prime Minister Tony Abbott did attempt to abolish the RET and related subsidies but were blocked by the Senate, and the Senators instead reinforced the 23% Labor RET.

        192

      • #
        Allen Ford

        the government can change its mind; read get booted out and replaced.

        Nice thought, Rick, but replaced by whom?

        That’s the burning question!

        One can only hope that when “ït” hits the fan, that there is a nice suite of very uncomfortable cells awaiting the [snip], right through the food chain, who cooked up and sustained this atrocity.

        10

      • #
        yarpos

        “The realistic range is 0-600MW. It is important to recognise that a wind generator can achieve rated capacity”

        The key word being “can”, not does. It can but then again it may not depending on the weather when you have peak demand. On that basis it should be derated I think.

        00

  • #
    wal1957

    AGL is going for the Government handout here. Easy money for them. Not so easy for the poor bastards who have to find the cash.

    160

    • #
      wal1957

      And no, I don’t blame AGL for doing it. Government policy has brought this to fruition, AGL are just accepting the offer of easy money.

      90

      • #
        Dennis

        I believe there is much more to the AGL Limited agenda than easy money for profit.

        “Gore trainees, GetUp and ALP staffers”, and a US born CEO?

        131

    • #
      Lionell Griffith

      Not so “easy money” in the long run. The hope behind the grab for short term gain is the expectation of someplace to go where your pile of cash can be worth something. Especially if the short term gain is transfer of stolen wealth (taxes and deficit spending).

      Keep in mind, money is itself of no value if there is nothing for it to buy that can support and advance your life. In a very real sense, going for a short term gain is at the cost of consuming your future. The so called money gained that way, destroys the value of the money. If there is no future, of what value is any amount of short term gain? None.

      There are numerous examples past and present where this is the actual outcome of focus on only short term gain.

      40

  • #
    Kinky Keith

    We mustn’t lose sight of the main issues.

    If the RET and subsidisation of wind and solar were removed you can be sure that AGL would keep Liddell open.

    Fat chance of that happening when Union sponsored superannuation has lotsa money in green ventures.

    We seem to be caught between a rock and a hard place.

    KK

    210

    • #
      wal1957

      If the RET and subsidisation of wind and solar were removed you can be sure that AGL would keep Liddell open.

      Yeah, If only the Turdball Liberals had a bit of common sense!
      Even if they did though, little Billy Shortone will renew the subsidies and worse, once he is installed as our fearless leader!

      120

      • #
        Kinky Keith

        Trumble, when on TV always has a stunned look on his face.

        It’s as if he can’t believe that he is getting away with it and wondering how much longer it can last.

        He mumbles inanities and dreams of the commission being made on the turnover of carbon credits in the EEU; easy.

        Over at golden sacks one of the serfs is polishing the honorary directors chair for when he returns.

        Who is he working for?

        When will we get to turn this mess around?

        KK

        180

        • #
          Sceptical Sam

          Right on the money there Kinky.

          Spot on.

          Turnbull doesn’t give a rat’s. He’s always been one for the main chance. And here the main chance is what comes next. For him.

          Goldman Sachs.

          Turnbull is treating all Australians with the contempt that epitomizes the left leaning, controlled trade, globalists.

          We need Tony Abbott to lead the Liberal Party. He speaks for the majority of Australians. He’s a free market man who loves freedom and the rule of law. If ever Australia needed him, it’s now.

          190

        • #
          Dennis

          Key considerations;

          Goldman Sachs, Keshik Capital Pte, Infrigen Energy …..

          41

        • #
          gnome

          That bewildered look on Turnbull’s face is his disbelief that anyone could think he is not the wisest most wonderful man ever to lower himself to the pursuit of politics.

          30

  • #
    Serp

    Annul the RET.

    Confiscate the power stations.

    150

    • #
      Sceptical Sam

      You got that have right.

      Annul the RET. Yep. Also annul the NEG.

      Confiscate? That’s what they do in Russia, and Zimbabwe, and Venezuala and all the other socialist/communist totalitarian joints.

      We don’t do that here. In Australia we buy back the farm. We don’t necklace here.

      Yet.

      60

  • #

    They taught the Green Left to say ‘market’ as often as possible. Best way to shut up skeps and conservatives. Of course, what the Green Left calls a market the rest of us call a blatant rig. The game belongs to the lobbyists and crony capitalists, who will ride the wave of slush as long as they can.

    Fight Green Blob!

    201

  • #
    TdeF

    30 newspolls. The Monash group. Turnbull demanding his friends attack Abbott. The ABC attacking Abbott. It’s on.
    Meanwhile Abbott is riding a bicycle on a fundraiser. How threatening is that? He’s up to something.

    Why can’t we use our own coal?
    Why can’t we use our own gas?
    Why can’t we look for more?
    Whose crazy idea is all this suffering and crippling prices while everyone else is building coal power plants, except us?

    As so many people now think, whoever promises to restore our energy prices, sufficiency and reliability will romp home.
    As Tony Abbott said, this is socialism masquerading as environmentalism. And “climate change is crap”.

    Everyone agrees, except the Malcolm’s Black Hand group. Now Malcolm is demanding his minister swear loyalty. Why?

    270

    • #
      RickWill

      I posted this upthread:
      https://www.google.com.au/maps/@-33.8651663,151.2544294,80m/data=!3m1!1e3
      This only a tiny part of Turnbull’s conflated position.

      I agree that Tony Abbott could romp in with a clear policy to lower electricity prices. Just stop robbing the poor to pay the rich. Who has subsidised Turnbull’s solar panels and battery. I make it to be 11kW of panels. Its a big house and he may have a lot of help living there. It would be a telling debate in the party room. I doubt many politicians actually know how the RET works.

      180

    • #
      Phillthegeek

      Meanwhile Abbott is riding a bicycle on a fundraiser.

      Are we paying him travelling allowance again??

      And on Liddell? The answer is obviously to nationalise. The Govt obviously needs the power to dictate what private companies do with their assets, even if that means selling them to Chinese companies like Alinta to serve the national interest. Legislate now!! :)

      215

      • #
        Dennis

        Are you referring to the MSM/ABC beat up regarding his participation in a triathlon at Port Macquarie?

        On official business in Queensland stopped over in Port Macquarie at own expense before continuing to base after the weekend and wrongly accused of abusing expenses.

        Around the same time a Labor PM and several other MPs used an RAAF executive jet to fly to Byron Bay to attend a staffer’s wedding.

        141

      • #
        el gordo

        Phil we should let the communists have Liddell because the New York capitalist stooge is selling us out.

        I personally guarantee that under the control of Beijing energy will become cheaper for consumers.

        51

        • #
          Clint

          An interesting comment el gordo. When it comes to picking totalitarians, who might one submit to? Communist central control or the Bureaucratic totalitarianism of the UN and its various toxic appendages UNEP / ECOSOC / NGO ‘civil society’ / UNFCCC?
          The former seems to have twigged (having risen from abject prosperity) that provided one ‘allows’ the masses to exercise their right to prosperity, the liberty and small government stuff may be glossed over with the assistance of a myriad of CCTV’s, apparatchiks and micro-management including measurement of social indices.

          The latter, on the other hand are coming from entirely the other end of the spectrum, from a position of immense prosperity and freedom, through which they ideologically impose a strangling constraint that is utterly unsustainable. They will fail and it will likely be chaotic when they inevitably do.

          On the other hand, the Chinese powers have scant regard for uppity Mozzies and their religious and cultural mores. Xtians have a hard enough time, along with Tibetans and Buddhists. So, my money is on the smart Chinese who ‘get’ the paradigm and necessity of prosperity and who are willing to play a long, long game. The amelioration of their State centralism will occur at the hands of necessity and efficiency in the course of social evolution and necessarily, emerge out of their superior group intellect.

          30

          • #
            el gordo

            Xi holds the mandate of heaven, what could go wrong?

            Socialism with Chinese characteristics is an accident of history and there is much to criticise, but after a century of being dudded by the Europeans, Americans and Japanese, they are finally back on top.

            Its been the greatest economic revolution the world has ever seen and Beijing intends to export this idea through the Belt and Road extravaganza. So its a long game and they are in a hurry, getting Loy Yang B and Liddell is strategic.

            01

    • #
      Jonesy

      Abbott is not a minister and can speak his mind…this was trumbull’s first tactical error.

      10

  • #
    TdeF

    In Victoria, our energy minister said when he increased coal prices 300% to force Hazelwood to close, electricity prices will ONLY go up 20%. Why should they go up at all? What was so urgent about closing Hazelwood? Why is it the people have to suffer for the Green views of politicians? Of course they could argue they were fairly elected, but as we now know, they literally stole an election.

    Our cricket team is going through hell for a piece of sandpaper and our politicians cannot even see a problem with their own criminal behaviour. Nor our faux Prime Minister who let Abbott do all the hard work and then stole his job.

    One of the things which must be stopped is the $6-$20Bn Snowy Battery. It is a total waste, will never work and cost more to run than it is worth. Now we have to pay windfarm owners, with windfarms paid by us, for the electricity to pump water up hill. The Minister for Goldmann Sachs should resign and live in the Carribbean with his money. He is not welcome here.

    271

    • #
      yarpos

      We have one plant forced shut by Labor stupdity in VIC

      We have one plant dynamited bt Labor stupidity in SA

      We have one plant being run down and shuttered, so AGL can game the system with expensive peaking power whever their renewables go ta ta. The State and Fed Libs just faff around the edges.

      Dear leader Gladys was trumpeting on the news tonight about NSW having the “most resilient power system” She really , really must not understand what situation she is in. I guess it doesnt matter, play the game, collect ridiculous pension, no problem really.

      212

      • #
        sophocles

        Dear leader Gladys was trumpeting on the news tonight about NSW having the “most resilient power system” She really , really must not understand what situation she is in. I guess it doesnt matter, play the game, collect ridiculous pension, no problem really.

        Rule 3 of politics (Rule 1 = Keep your A**e well covered; Rule 2 = Tear down everyone else FIRST) is:

        “Tell the plebs what they want to hear. If necessary lie through your teeth but give them the message they want. Always.”

        Heh: must be hearing the rumble of the tumbrils …

        30

  • #
    Lawrie

    I keep hearing Josh tell us that power prices will come down but as the amount of reliable generation shrinks and the demand expands I can see only one result and that is power must become dearer. Now I am not an economist and I do not have Josh’s battery of top flite expert bureaucrats advising me so I could be wrong but if I am right Josh and Co are in for a rude shock. Mind you it could be a Baldrick’s clever plan where Josh and Mal realise that power will get dearer, that Bill Shorten will be the PM when it does and they can blame Labor for the mess. Since the whole GW scam began however whenever the left (alarmists) are caught out they simply double down and go harder with the support of the bulk of bureaucrats and dumb journalists resulting in South Australia Redux being imposed on all of us.

    Hang on to those little generators we used to have on our push bikes so you can recharge your phone. I have plenty of firewood so we might have to buy a slow combustion stove. Pity the poor sods who live in cities and probably thought voting Labor was smart.

    140

    • #
      Johnincq

      “I keep hearing Josh tell us that power prices will come down” That’s politician code for the rate of increase will not be as quick as we had. Same as when they say they are making a saving, code for, we won’t increase taxation as much as previously planed.

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    cedarhill

    Another modification of the golden rule – those with gold, rule.
    With the facts against them for a few decades now, when every prediction made by their models fail, with electricity prices soaring, with the grids going bonkers from renewables, folks freezing due to lack of inexpensive energy — basically the science is all against the warmist. It still goes on, even stronger because there are trillions of gold to be mined from the public in Western nations where their gold buys off votes and controls the media propaganda.
    A bit like the late Roman Republic as it moved over to Imperial Rome. We now have Imperial Greens.

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    • #
      Kinky Keith

      Great outline of our situation and the analogy of the greens and Roman Empire is all too accurate.

      Both care little about human sacrifice and worship any convenient gods available that will give them greater power and riches.

      KK

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  • #
    Graham Richards

    There is only one way to sort this mess. Turnbull & his left wing cabinet must go. Chasing retailers for better deals & rates is a waste of time. The government is controlling electricity prices by remote control together with the carbon tax we shouldn’t have. So in order to have some order in a free market get the bloody politicians & their subsidies out of the market!
    Then we’ll have some sense & relief for all.

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    • #
      Kinky Keith

      I see that smirk on Trumbles face as he has one of his serfs create a new “app” to search the internet for a cheaper electricity deal.

      All we need is that app.

      This man believes that all Australian voters are very very very stupid.

      Just maybe he’s right.

      KK

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        Dennis

        I wonder what was the financial deal when the taxpayer funded second official residence in Sydney had solar energy installed.

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      • #

        It’s priceless. They create a “market” with different providers all being charged too much and charging too much…and we get to pick which one we like. With an app whatsy that actually searches the internet thingy! It’s so totally modern and millennial, dude. Maynard G Krebs and his bongo drums couldn’t be more hip and cool.

        Someone please remove Malcolm Turnbull. I don’t know if it’s really his own money he uses to nail down Wentworth or whether Wenty wins are guaranteed by some weird globalist slush fund. But make him go away, along with renewable marching bands and agile monorails. He’ll always have Paris.

        To the Libs and Nats: nobody likes Malcolm outside the bubble, there isn’t a vote anywhere in that well-clad carcass. Unpopularity would be okay if he didn’t suck…but he sucks. And nobody likes Bishop outside the bubble…and she sucks too.

        Coalition, save yourself. Use your flaming loaf. And I have one last word…

        COAL.

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    toorightmate

    Off topic:
    Nick Harmsem (a very appropriate name) tells us on the ABC News web site that Elon’s battery is the answer to the maiden’s prayer in SA.
    I do hope the good folk in SA and Vic have been offering their heartfelt thanks to the black coal fired power generators in NSW and Qld, because there ain’t been no wind for the past 72 hours.
    I guess Elon’s wonder battery compensated for that also.

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    • #
      Graeme No.3

      What very peculiar maidens he associates with.
      Incidentally his wife is the news anchor for the ABC News in SA.

      50

    • #
      Dennis

      Reading blog posts elsewhere it is obvious that many people believe that wind, solar and batteries are the future stand alone energy supply.

      And some even think that base power is no longer necessary.

      Figure that out, more evidence that sales and marketing pays.

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        Yonniestone

        Its absolutely stupefying to realise just how many believe this can happen even on the basics of pure observation of the numbers it simply cannot add up!

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    • #
      sophocles

      Alfen delivered its 1 MW battery energy storage system “TheBattery” to Engie’s power generation plant in Drogenbos (Brussels).

      That was Sept, 2017.
      Two months later:

      A battery fire at the Engie Electrabel plant in Drogenbos on Saturday, November 11, has emitted a cloud of toxic smoke that has led to traffic disruptions in the area. Parts of roads in the affected area are reportedly closed: specifically, the fire and associated toxic smoke closed exit 17 on the Brussels ring road, near Anderlecht. Brussels police have asked residents in the western and southern areas of the city (Forest and Uccle municipalities) to close windows and doors, and drivers in the area to shut off ventilation, to avoid inhaling the smoke. The fire is contained, but continues to burn as of Saturday afternoon (local time). Belgian authorities are considering evacuating the affected areas.

      [11 Nov 2017]

      How long ago was Elon’s battery installed?
      Any day now, folks! :-)

      On Monday, I noticed some hopefuls are trying to import and sell Teslas into NZ. I wonder if they’ve seen this? Maybe, maybe not. I know they haven’t seen holy-crap-repairs-are-insanely-expensive-beware. And I know the cars are still not fireproof. Ooh! Think of the CO2 emissions when they conflagrate!! Burn, baby, Burn. The salesmen did not appreciate my comment about that. I wonder why? Or was it my poke that they have to have spare parts in the country before they can sell the cars? Three months wait from Tesla, plus one month’s wait to get them here. Ooh. Lot’s of loan cars to keep owners mobile! :-)

      Any car sold with a Non-disclosure agreement is not to be touched—not even as a gift.

      Tesla have produced a mere 130,000 vehicles in total over the last, at least, five years. Pathetic. That’s less than a week’s production from Toyota or Nissan. Yet they’ve had four? fires. 1 fire per 33,000 cars. Not looking good.

      Sorry, son/daughter, you park your Tesla out on the road, nowhere near the house. If it’s not there next day, be thankful: it’s somebody else’s problem.

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  • #
    Richard Ilfeld

    I should think that at some point a ‘household rig’ becomes competitive. Lots of us here — away from the cities in Florida — have hurricane rigs… what to do if the power is out for a couple of weeks. It is interesting to see how much technology has improved this in the last 30 years, not so much on the generating side, but the consumption. LED’s light with minimum current, and cell phones (with router or hot spot capability) and low consumption laptops, and even low power led screen portable TVs all will work on a solar rig, leaving the AC generator for a few hours a day of fridge, fan, and in extremes, one room of Air Conditioning. A backup inverter to get AC from the car, and full set of capable battery operated tools fully charged before the event, and a really well insulated cold box finish the job. The rich folks just put in whole house generators and big fuel tanks. All this is for living off the grid, if the grid is down for a while.

    Of course, this does nothing for business or industry. I’d assume that the final rule that destroys a society is the one that says you can’t generate your own power, even in the face of a failing grid. The cost-effectiveness of power generation makes rather small facilities pretty effective, as slightly elevated unit costs are compensated for by lack of need for a non-immediately local transmission grid. I’ll bet that, under the radar, a fair amount of OZ is evolving to live off-grid; first on a standby basis, then full time.

    If you’ve lived in an ordinary neighborhood after a hurricane…within two or three days the life patterns can be pretty normal. There are heavy cords running on the lawn from house to house, of course, and there is more socializing so as to AC one place at a time, but the fridges work, food is cooked, light and electronics are running, and life is passable tho complaining is rampant.

    I think, if the perception was that the power problems were to be long lasting, the folks would manage a solution, unless proscribed.
    If a supplier isn’t reliable, stop buying from them. If the problem is government caused, stop voting for the enablers. If buying on the free market and voting are no longer useful to solve your problems, and you are reading this, you need to be emigrating a or arming.

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    • #
      wal1957

      If the problem is government caused, stop voting for the enablers

      You’re talking about the big 2 in Australia, the Liberals-(conservative), and Labor-(socialist progressives).
      For the past 10 or so years our choice has been ‘the lesser of two evils’.
      We now have a situation where there is basically no difference between the two major parties re renewable energy. They are both EVIL. Yes, Labor is more evil, but they are both EVIL.

      I have always said that we need a viable third party to maintain good government. I think we are doomed to 2 terms of a Labor government after the election in 2019. Our only hope it seems is that a new party emerges from the ashes of that election, that listens to voices of reason and logic, and not to the PC crowd and warming alarmists.

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      • #
        el gordo

        The ‘ginger group’ is our best chance to upset the pseudo Marxist consortium and regain democracy.

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      • #
        Geoff Sherrington

        Wal,
        It is not enough to say that something needs to be done.
        This situation is so bad that we all have to actively DO THINGS personally and often. Geoff

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        • #
          Kinky Keith

          That’s the issue Geoff, we need to turn this around sooner rather than later.

          When the son of a prominent public officer scores big on an investment that is closely related to the decisions of that officer, we, the taxpayers, almost certainly have the right and perhaps a duty to seek redress.

          There’s a lot of “connectedness” between government legislation and profiteering that is interfering with the running of the country.

          Expose self interest.

          KK

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    • #
      RickWill

      One of the features of having the generating and transmission assets privately owned is that there is no great need for the government to legislate to compel you to pay for the service.

      Some of the retailers in Australia have recognised the falling demand and have asked government to compel people to stay connected but I do not see any incentive for that to happen.

      South Australia is already beyond the point of no return. The network there is already dead economically. Making your own electricity is cheaper than getting it from the grid.

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    pat

    ideologically Vesey:

    Wikipedia: Andy Vesey
    In an interview with Guardian Australia, Vesey spoke of his desire to take AGL “out of the CO2 emissions business”…
    In March 2017, Vesey launched the world’s largest residential virtual power plant in South Australia. The plant will involve 1,000 connected batteries being installed in homes and businesses in South Australia providing 5MW of peak capacity…
    In October 2016, the Climate Alliance recognised Vesey as its Business Leader of the Year, citing his role in launching “numerous initiatives to transition towards a carbon constrained future”…
    In December 2017, Vesey was named CEO of the Year at the S&P Global Platts Global Energy Awards. He was recognised by the judges as “progressive, enlightened and hard-charging”, and praised for moving AGL away from coal to a diverse portfolio of renewables…

    24 May 2016: SMH: Jessica Gardner: AGL boss Andy Vesey says companies worried by potential Trump presidency
    At The Australian Financial Review’s Chanticleer lunch Mr Vesey described the upcoming election as a “wildcard”.
    AUDIO: 1min43secs: J.P. Morgan’s Sir Rod Eddington and AGL’s Andrew Vesey debate the major economic risks of 2016

    Mr Vesey, who is originally from New York, describes himself as a Democrat voter…
    “If HIllary can’t bring out the Sanders voters she is going to be in a very tough spot.” Mr Vesey said he recently talked to his daughter in New York after she voted for Sanders in the Democratic primary…
    Mr Vesey says he would never have considered voting for Hillary Clinton but now that Donald Trump looks like a serious contender he will “vote for her three times”…
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/investments/agl-boss-andy-vesey-says-companies-worried-by-potential-trump-presidency-20160524-gp2tiv.html

    ironic, given Abbott & company’s Monash Forum:

    Monash University: Monash Industry Council of Advisers (MICA)
    Sir Rod Eddington AO
    Sir Rod Eddington is non-executive Chairman (Australia and New Zealand) of J.P. Morgan and Lion, Chairman of Victorian Major Events Company; holds non-executive directorships with News Corporation, China Light and Power Holdings and John Swire and Sons; is President of the Australia Japan Business Cooperation Committee and is former Chairman of Infrastructure Australia. Sir Rod was educated as an engineer at the UWA and then Oxford University as WA’s 1974 Rhodes Scholar. Sir Rod was awarded a Knighthood by the British Government and an Officer of the Order of Australia.

    Andy Vesey
    Andy has over 30 years’ experience in the energy industry including strategic and commercial leadership of large energy organisations, and working in complex regulatory and political environments. His experience extends across the energy supply chain, including power development, generation, distribution and retail businesses. Andy commenced with AGL in January 2015, officially taking over as MD and CEO on 12 February 2015.

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    • #
      pat

      Aug 2017: Newcastle Herald: Joanne McCarthy: AGL and Tomago on a collision course over future energy needs
      SOLAR and wind are “the most economic” options to replace Liddell coal-fired energy after the power station closes in 2022, said AGL Macquarie chief executive Andy Vesey on Thursday after dismissing calls for a new coal-fired power station as not “economically rational”.

      “We just don’t see the development of a new coal-fired power station as economically rational, even before carbon costs,” he said, only days after the state’s largest electricity user, Tomago Aluminium, confirmed it had been lobbying politicians to support a high-efficiency, low emissions (HELI) coal-fired power station to replace Liddell…

      Mr Vesey ruled out extending Liddell’s life after the planned 2022 closure date because of the carbon risk, and the significant investment needed to produce a less reliable and more costly energy source than renewables…

      But in an interview this week the chief executive of the state’s largest electricity user, Tomago Aluminium’s Matt Howell, said aluminium smelters needed baseload supply “and practically, that means thermal, either coal or gas”.
      “And whilst we’re not ideologically opposed to renewables, wind and solar – they certainly have their place in many applications – but there is no aluminium smelter anywhere in the world that is powered by wind and solar,” Mr Howell said…

      Asked about the push for battery storage as the answer for baseload power, Mr Howell said the world’s largest battery, with capacity for 100 megawatt hours, would power the Tomaga smelter for less than eight minutes.
      http://www.theherald.com.au/story/4847695/solar-wind-to-replace-liddell-power-agl/

      pre-AGL, Vesey was chief operating officer of US utility AES Corporation:

      Dec 2017: AFR: AES Corporation sounds out Australian partners to seize market share
      by Angela Macdonald-Smith
      Major utilities including EnergyAustralia are understood to be among the Australian power industry players discussing a potential tie-up with AES Corporation as the US battery storage major scours the local market for project opportunities.
      AES has already joined forces with privately owned Lyon Group on battery projects and is thought to be looking to participate in state government tenders run by the Victorian and Queensland governments.

      The integrated generator-retailers such as EA and ***AGL Energy are thought to be on the list of potential partners for AES, as well as transmission and distribution companies for potential projects using storage to eliminate the need for costly network upgrades.
      “We’re really encouraged by the direction the market is taking here,” said AES Energy Storage vice-president Praveen Kathpal.

      “It is clear that there are challenges for the power system but they are ones that storage is suited to meet and has proven to be able to provide in other parts of the world.”

      Included are batteries integrated with a renewable generation project – similar to Tesla’s venture with Neoen in South Australia – as well as projects embedded in the grid network, and those involving storage closer to where the customer is using power…

      “On an industry level, we think the next five to 10 years provides a multiple gigawatt opportunity for storage across Australia and we are eager to participate in that,” said Mr Kathpal, who is also chairman of the Energy Storage Association in the US…

      The federal government’s proposed National Energy Guarantee policy envisages about 3600 MW of “dispatchable” generation capacity is added in 2020-3030, with storage an important technology to allow intermittent renewable generation to fit the bill…

      Mr Kathpal said that while Tesla’s new South Australian battery, which was switched on last week, was important to increase the scale of storage to a size useful for network planning, AES’s experience overseas pointed to the likely emergence of storage systems that provided energy over longer periods.

      The Tesla battery in Jamestown can run for just over an hour at full capacity, while a system AES is installing in California – which also uses lithium-ion technology – can provide the same 100 MW, but over four hours, broadening its range of uses.
      “That’s the general trend that we’ll see: as costs come down and as the market becomes more familiar with storage, it’s going to unlock the ability for storage to provide multiple uses in longer-duration configurations,” Mr Kathpal said.
      http://www.afr.com/business/energy/electricity/aes-corporation-sounds-out-australian-partners-to-seize-market-share-20171203-gzxybz

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      • #
        shannon

        The S.A. battery only provides energy for 30 minutes…no where near an hour as stated in your post.
        Regular observation on the NEM site will back this up.
        S.A constantly has a shortfall of 300MW in generation.
        Without connectors from Victoria ..this state would be more times than not… under candle power.!
        The Australian Government needs to “grow some” and take responsibility for its actions against its own people…..Socialism by Deceit..!!

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  • #
    Leonard Lane

    The deeper you dig, he more you see that CAGW (global warming, climate change)is a scam to make more money by providing less energy. How is it that rich people conspire to punish the poor over and over in history?
    It must be that the government must stay out of an industry and subsidies, tax breaks, and other phony schemes should prohibited.
    A return to free enterprise, regulated only to the point that it serves the public, can provide low cost power at the least cost.
    Every endeavor to have socialism whether creeping of mandated always decreases efficiency and increases cost to the middle and lower classes.
    Follow the money? Yes. Follow the subsidies, tax brakes, etc. to see where the money is being used against the people and return the power generation and power grid to free enterprise. The free market is always better than socialism and controlled markets to the benefit of politicians and bureaucrats.

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    Dennis

    Isn’t it now very clear to people that those of us who are supplied with energy from the largest interconnected electricity grid in the world have been set up for profiteering and climate change political deception?

    State governments privatising the electricity industry and in NSW a Labor government sold half of the assets for less than half the lowest asset valuation including a bargain deal for AGL Ltd of Bayswater and Liddell Power Stations. Closures and demolitions in other states approved by governments determined to impose their “transition to renewable energy” political agenda resulting in world’s highest electricity pricing, grid instability and economic vandalism.

    And look who the profiteers are, consider their international associates, UN IPCC Paris Agreement, etc.

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      OriginalSteve

      One concern i have is that as power prices climb through the stratosphere, if the govt wont listen to public outrage ( why would they when they feel they have to protect their mythical “Gaia” and all that lovely GST revenue on electricity….who says you cant create a new religion and not make it profitable….just poking the bear here…..) the execs at power compnies may become prime kidnappung and ransom targets.

      I dont want thus to happen and just so we’re crystal clear i dont advocate illegal activity in any way, but you woukd be a fool not to expect something like that happening. Lets be real – peopke will feel angry and powerless, so they will go for soft targets….

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  • #
    jorgekafkazar

    Australia has fallen into the hands of The Wreckers.

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  • #
    Mark M

    Meanwhile …

    A new coal war frontier emerges as China and Japan compete for energy projects in Southeast Asia

    Southeast Asia’s appetite for coal has spurred a new geopolitical rivalry between China and Japan as the two countries race to provide high-efficiency, low-emission technology

    The more than 1,600 coal plants scheduled to be built by Chinese corporations in over 62 countries will make China the world’s primary provider of high-efficiency, low-emission technology. 

    http://www.scmp.com/comment/insight-opinion/article/2139667/new-coal-war-frontier-emerges-china-and-japan-compete-energy?utm_source=CCNet+Newsletter&utm_campaign=e173cecd48-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2018_04_03&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_fe4b2f45ef-e173cecd48-36409661

    * * *
    Australian politicians of all stripes know exactly what they are doing to Australia.

    They do it deliberately and need to be stopped. Now.

    ` ` ` `

    “As for any politicians who have ever believed in global warming, or supported the carbon tax, or a carbon-constrained economy, there is no hope for them.

    They are either too stupid or incompetent to be taken seriously.

    Make their lives hell too, just as they wished a diminished life on you.”

    h/t David Archibald for quote.

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  • #
    Dennis

    Identifying energy as “the issue of the day”, Vesey started out as an engineer at New York utility Consolidated Edison, before joining Niagara Mohawk Power Corporation.[5]

    Vesey subsequently worked in leadership roles at Ernst and Young[6] and FTI Consulting, before joining AES Corporation in 2004.[7] He held a number positions at AES, including running the business in Latin America, before becoming Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer in 2012. There he led the company’s Global Operations portfolio across 20 countries.[8]

    Having run the Melbourne-based Citipower Pty Ltd in the late 1990s,[9] Vesey returned to Australia as Managing Director and CEO of AGL Energy Limited in February 2015. Citi analyst Dale Koenders described the appointment as “a good time to change the perception of AGL” and Vesey’s first action as CEO was to place AGL Energy’s entire upstream gas business under review.[10]

    Vesey implemented a new Greenhouse Gas Policy in 2015, including a commitment for AGL to close its existing coal-fired power stations by 2050.[11] In an interview with Guardian Australia, Vesey spoke of his desire to take AGL “out of the CO2 emissions business”.[12]

    In March 2017, Vesey launched the world’s largest residential virtual power plant in South Australia. The plant will involve 1,000 connected batteries being installed in homes and businesses in South Australia providing 5MW of peak capacity.[13]

    The launch of the initiative resulted in a public row between Federal Energy Minister Josh Frydenberg and South Australian Premier Jay Weatherill during a media conference, at which Vesey was also answering questions. Vesey commented that Frydenberg and Weatherill needed to “keep talking”.[14]

    Also in March 2017, Vesey responded to Elon Musk’s claim that Tesla could solve Australia’s energy shortage crisis within 100 days – offering him a site for a grid battery farm in South Australia.[15]

    Vesey is a member of the 2016 cohort of Male Champions of Change[16] and the co-author of Unlocking the Benefits of Restructuring: A Blueprint for Transmission (PUR Inc., November 1999).[17]

    Wikipedia

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    • #
      Dennis

      Awards[edit]
      In October 2016, the Climate Alliance recognised Vesey as its Business Leader of the Year, citing his role in launching “numerous initiatives to transition towards a carbon constrained future”.[18] In the same year, he was named at number 11 in the Australian Financial Review’s 2016 Corporate Power List.[19]

      In December 2017, Vesey was named CEO of the Year at the S&P Global Platts Global Energy Awards. He was recognised by the judges as “progressive, enlightened and hard-charging”, and praised for moving AGL away from coal to a diverse portfolio of renewables.[20] In the same month Vesey was named by The Australian Financial Review as one of its Business People of the Year, having “managed to move the country’s biggest greenhouse gas emitter forward along what he sees as an inevitable path of carbon reduction”[21]. The AFR also described Vesey as “one of the most prominent business leaders to speak out on diversity, equality and violence against women”.

      Wikipedia

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    • #
      Dennis

      Male Champions Of Change …

      The list includes the Qantas CEO who had aircraft branded with rainbow colours making a political statement at shareholders expense.

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      • #
        OriginalSteve

        I take issue with use of effectively shareholder money to push in essence a moral point, Ssm isnt a political issue, its a morality issue.

        In the ACT, the ACT govt put rainbow ( homosexual ) flags everywhere, at tax payer expense, but didnt ask for permission to use public funds to push that agenda. It ticked a lot of people off.

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  • #
    Mark M

    ICYMI …
    Selection of Authors for IPCC Sixth Assessment Report
    http://www.ipcc.ch/news_and_events/pr_ar6_authors.shtml
    6 April 2018

    Also …
    International Climate Show, 6-8 April:
    http://www.climateshow.ch/en/home/

    All the latest technology to save the planet.

    10

  • #
    TedM

    This is a perfect example of how massive subsidies to an inefficient and unreliable power production system can cause those who are driven by self interest to invest in what without the subsidies, would end up in the financial graveyard.

    It goes to demonsrarte the unbelievable stupidity of a Govt. and opposition that would apply such a policy.

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    • #
      Yonniestone

      Way too much power in the hands of those that covet ruling over serving, think of the situation in 10-20 years when millennials are the dominant political demographic and imagine self entitlement dialed up to eleven.

      Adding in the constant erosion of national social cohesion from PC cultural Marxism and Australia may invent a new form of ‘failed state’ hell.

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    • #
      PeterS

      Indeed. Yet the lefties yell foul whenever someone dares mentions we introduce incentives for coal fired power generation. Both sides are hypocrites and nation destroyers. So much for believing a level playing field. The LNP in particular are super hypocritical on that point. If they really believe in a level playing field in market economics and business they should scrap the incentives for renewables immediately. Otherwise they are not true liberals but in fact another left-wing form of government that’s distorting the economic environment, and if it continues long enough under either major party Australia’s economy will no doubt implode.

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  • #
    TedM

    Delete “demonsrarte ” insert “demonstrate”.

    20

  • #
    TdeF

    Is this really all about Global Warming? What Global Warming? On the 30th anniversary of the founding of the IPCC
    and the invention of Man Made Global warming, it has transformed into “Hell no. Coal must go!”
    Why? Or shouldn’t we ask questions?

    Do any politicians seriously believe the world is in trouble or that Snowy 2.0 will fix it?

    Of course not. As Ann Coulter said, with the Left controlling the media, the newspapers, the universities, the schools, the institutions the only thing saving us from a world with no electricity is free speech the internet.

    So what is the hot Left topic now after Hollywood actresses pretending to be very surprised that sex plays a big part in getting a job? Censoring the internet.

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    • #
      Dennis

      Once again, Prime Minister Tony Abbott said in 2015 that he will not stand for socialism masquerading as environmentalism.

      In the same year UN Official Christiana Figureres made it clear that Tony Abbott’s comment was accurate, she admitted that climate change agenda was not about environment and all about redistribution of developed nation wealth, an attack on the capitalist system as we have known it.

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    robert rosicka

    OT more fake news from the specialists at the ABC .

    The Condimine river has had gas seeps since discovered by white man but a greentard throws a match into it and it’s only just started to seep since fracking was commenced nearby .

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/science/2018-04-07/fossil-fuel-geoscientist-joins-climate-change-fight/9494426

    Also no mention of the Greenpeace founder who changed sides for a balanced story .

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    • #
      el gordo

      I agree with this sentiment.

      ‘Only by measuring emissions before, during and after CSG wells are sunk will it be possible to work out whether its extraction is increasing methane emissions by making natural methane leaks worse, or creating new leaks, he says.’

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    PeterS

    The comments here are spot on. All I have to add is if things are not turned around very soon (ie, scrap all incentives for renewables) to encourage the building of new coal fired power stations, we will all have to pay a heavy price for being the dumbest nation for closing our base load power stations one by one in favour of a power sources that cost more, are far more intermittent while at the same time the population grows at an enormousness rate. At some point soon we will face large outages sufficient to upset businesses and if it continues long enough eventually our economy will implode, leading ultimately to social and financial crises. All this because so many people (politicians and voters) think we can alter the temperature of the planet when the facts show we would make no measurable difference even if all the people in Australia were exterminated and disposed of appropriately.

    If we don’t start following much of the rest of the world and build new coal fired power stations to utilise our enormous supply of cheap resources of coal, which is in great demand by the rest of the world for a very long time to come, we have no option but to declare this nation as the dumbest one of all that deserves everything it gets. I think even Turnbull has sensed things are going wrong but he is pathetically so stupid and gutless he won’t do the obvious for fear of losing the next election. We desperately need a new leader with guts and fortitude to call the renewables incentives for what they really are; suicide pills for each and every Australian.

    I’m actually looking forward to the next federal election with great interest to see how the voters of Australia will react to the energy crisis this country is now facing. The obvious choice is to ensure the ACP holds the balance of power at both levels of parliament but of course that will not happen, and even if it did it might not save us but it would give us at least some chance. Our only real hope is for a Liberal MP to replace Turnbull ASAP who has the right attitude to start turning things around. Although that leader might still end up losing the next election, it’s our only real hope so it’s definitely worth the risk. Besides, if the new leader can convince enough of the people we are heading down the wrong road the LNP might even win with a landslide, and then the right policies can be enacted with the people’s wishes, such as abolishing incentives for renewables. Clearly the alternatives of letting Turnbull remain as PM even after the next election or Shorten becomes PM are terminal for this nation. I suppose in that situation Turnbull would still be preferable to Shorten as it might give us a small ray of hope where he will change but I wouldn’t hold my breath.

    Enjoy the ride towards the abyss. Let’s see how close we get to it. It will be a gauge as to the intelligence and awareness of the people of Australia. I sincerely hope we survive the test but I have my doubts we will, given the situation and the facts.

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      el gordo

      ‘Although that leader might still end up losing the next election, it’s our only real hope so it’s definitely worth the risk.’

      The Coalition is on a hiding to nothing, so I’ve put all my money on the ginger group toppling Turnbull.

      It would be helpful if we could organise a scientific ‘Blue Team’ to combat global warming hysteria and give the Monash mob something to fight with.

      We already know that warm water doesn’t bleach coral and Antarctica is packing on snow and ice except where there is volcanic activity.

      This should be an easy sell if only the splitters knew how to exploit it. We shouldn’t expect too much, they are only career politicians.

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        robert rosicka

        ElGordo I’m amazed they’re still taking bets on Labor winning , it’s not will they it’s by how much .

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        • #
          el gordo

          Its amusing that the MSM is trumpeting Turnbull as the Liberal PM of choice with 62 percent electoral support, but this is distorted when you consider every Green/Labor person consider him the best of a bad lot and voted accordingly.

          The election is due in 2019 and I’m still hopeful that Tony, travelling comfortably in third place, will upset the favourite. Failing that, a Labor victory will see Bill and Penny pay homage to Beijing and potentially stay in power for a decade.

          10

    • #
      Geoff Sherrington

      Peter,
      You have to do more than look forward to the next Fed election.
      You have to expend effort to influence the outcome.
      Use every trick you have to make it known to all comers that the present electricity structure HAS to be changed.
      There is time for a strong public outcry to have some effect. Help to make it happen, eh?
      Your thoughts here on Jo’s blog are excellent, but they need amplification and publicity. Geoff

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      • #
        PeterS

        Thanks Geoff. I’m more of a realist and I believe we are doomed. However, I’m not saying we should give up and crawl into some crack. As you say we need to get the public well informed to they can make the right decisions at the ballot box. It’s a far better way than doing nothing and leaving things become worse than necessary. Unfortunately, my realistic nature is such that the public will not listen (I have tried) and it will take a near death experience to wake them up, or worse than that it will be too late and we crash and burn, then we come out of the ashes much wiser. History is a great teacher but alas very few learn from history. If we can at least make more people aware then perhaps it will soften the blow. You also have to understand these things do not happen overnight. The West has had it’s prime and is now on the decline, as do all past empires. In other words the rot started a long time ago so it’s virtually impossible to turn things around completely. It’s in our nature. Like a house infested with termites there comes a point where the exterminator can’t make things right again so the house has to be demolished and a new one built.

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        • #

          The West in decline, yes, but civilizations don’t conform to
          laws of historicist necessity like Hegel and Spengler believed.
          If we can’t defend our freedoms we don’t deserve to have them.

          Like Stefan Molyneux speaking out for free speech says,we have
          three options:

          (1) Negotiation/challenge and argument,
          (2)Violence,
          (3)Withdrawal.

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MXKZcV0eoUI

          As a democracy, (2) isn’t an option, and as a great
          civilization that gave its men and women the vote,
          campaigned to abolish slavery, achieved an industrial
          revolution that ended famine in the west and brought
          unprecedented prosperity to its cits, (3) isn’t an option
          either. Listen up, Trumble, Shorten, Soras and Big Al.

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      • #

        Letyterrs gALore to our so-called betters and more…
        Failing all else, serfs favour the tumbril.
        https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/0/0f/The_Ducking_Stool_at_Leominster_-_geograph.org.uk_-_15898.jpg

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      Ted O’Brien.

      Peter, in recent years we have seen landslide election victories by conservative parties reversed at the next election.

      The Abbott landslide was thwarted by Clive Palmer, acting at Al Gore’s call , and Malcolm Turnbull, and by persistent personal vilification by Marxists in and about the ALP.

      The Newman landslide in Queensland was reversed by personal vilification alone. Lies on lies.

      The message for us in this is that the proportion of the electorate that has been brainwashed to Marxism through our education system now exceeds 50%. We desperately need a leader who will challenge this.

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      • #
        PeterS

        Agree. The problem though is there is little hope of a suitable leader being approved by either major party. Both major parties have been eaten from within by termites. A new party is required and that will take a lot of time to develop by which time the crash and burn scenario would have taken its course. Then again we might be pleasantly surprised and either the LNP select one or Shorten does a Hawke and surprises us all, which I doubt of course. We can be sure of one thing. If we continue the way we are over the next 5-15 years we are toast, and we probably be begging for China to step in and take over.

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  • #
    Robber

    Some hard questions for Mr Vesey of AGL: (Is there any journo or pollie willing to step up on behalf of consumers? Or will the ACCC tell the truth in its midyear report on electricity prices?)

    - Mr Vesey, you say prices will come down. When and by how much? What is your forecast wholesale price? Will it be around the current $90/MWhr, or the affordable price of $60 where prices used to be before Hazelwood closed?

    – Yesterday Liddell was delivering 1680 MW of baseload power, about 20% of NSW demand. So far you have only committed to 650 MW of wind, at a 30% capacity factor that will only deliver 200 MW on average, and on occasion near zero, so it is not reliable. Your proposed next investments include a 100 MW upgrade of Bayswater, 300 MW of solar that will on average deliver only 100 MW at best, and a 250 MW gas peaker station. At best that equals about 400 MW of baseload equivalent, or just 25% of Liddell. How will that lower prices?

    – You then list some “possible” investments if others do not respond to “market signals”. You mean higher prices?

    – Your “possible investments include 750 MW “renewables” or about 220 MW on average at 30% availability, a 500 MW gas peaker station, and a 250 MW battery. At best that equals about another 400 MW of baseload equivalent, or another 25% of Liddell. How will that lower prices?

    – So all up, if we include your committed and “possible” investments, you intend to only replace 50% of Liddell capacity with equivalent baseload capacity. How will that lower prices?

    – As you invest in more “renewables”, how do you reconcile your statement of lower prices with the fact that as well as receiving the wholesale price, your “renewables” will also receive an additional $80/MWhr from the sale of RET certificates that further push up the retail price?

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    • #
      PeterS

      250 MW battery? What type and how much will that cost per kWh? If it’s an EOS type battery using the Zinc hybrid cathode technology (competing with lithium-ion batteries) according to their calculations it would cost US$155/kWh and last for 4 hours: Eos Aurora Cost Calculator So how will that lower prices? Of course it won’t, and actually increase them. The whole AGL thing is a marketing campaign to maximise profits for their shareholders. They are not doing anything illegal. They are simply doing what any good business would do within the law. The rules of the game are wrong. The only solution is to start curtailing and eventually remove all incentives for renewables ASAP.

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      • #
        lance

        AU is caught in a vise. On one side are the RETs. On the other side is the deregulated manner of pricing called CPI–x.

        AGL owns both Liddell and Bayswater as well as interests in the unreliables.

        AGL is playing both sides against the middle and driving up the spot pricing of Bayswater.

        Just my guess.

        In any event, the citizenry are being taken to the cleaners by the accountants, pols, and players.

        This isn’t going to unwind well or quickly.

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    Okay, this is an advisory mention here.

    You can chase up the …. EXACT output from any power plant in Australia at any one point in time, and I’ll show you how, and for this exercise, I’ll be showing you how to do it for the Liddell plant in question.

    Here’s the first link, and this is to the nemweb site for current dispatch.

    Once it opens, you’ll see a long (long) list of links. Scroll right to the bottom. Now, without opening any of the (blue) links, note at the left where it details the day, date, and time. You’ll see that it is updated every five minutes.

    Okay, when you’re ready, click on the bottom link.

    A text box will open asking you to either open it or save it, and you’ll need a spreadsheet program, and I (suppose like most) have XL. Click on open, and when the next screen comes up, open the document in XL.

    For the sake of the exercise here, I’m doing it with the information as of 9.35AM on the Saturday morning.

    Right at the top of screen it details the title of this document, and after the wording text you’ll see the date time group, indicated here as 201804070935. (Year, Month, Date, Time)

    Okay, Column F shows the code for the plants, and it’s basically just a shortening of the plant name, and in alphabetical order

    Scroll down to the Liddell plant, indicated here as LD01, LD02, LD03, and LD04. That’s Liddell Units one to four.

    Alongside that, to the right is the output at that exact time indicated in MegaWatts.

    So here we have Unit One showing 397MW, and you can then add them up for two three and four.

    So, right now, Liddell actually has all four Units in operation, and that’s a first for a number of Months now, as at least One unit, and sometimes two have been down constantly for almost 40 weeks now, and I might suggest major work to get them ready for the final big push towards the shutdown, whenever that is to be.

    So, Liddell is currently delivering 1541MW to the grid. The original Nameplate was 2000MW, so this is almost as good as it gets really for this old plant. They wound them back to (a total of around) 300MW each from 3AM till 8AM, and prior to that, all four Units were at around 420MW each pretty much constantly, so a four unit total of around 1680MW, probably the maximum they can wring out of them now, so after 45 to 47 years, it’s still managing 84% of its original design power.

    That’s the best I have seen from Liddell for those ten Months, and my suggestion is that this current kerfuffle might be to draw attention to the plant now that all the major work has been done to get it back to its best that it can be now, considering its age.

    For any of you who have further interest in thase reports, here is the list of those codes for the generators listed at that XL document, at this link.

    Tony.

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      You know, there’s something in all this that is really interesting, and here, forgive my cynicism.

      I’m of the opinion that AGL and its current ‘boss’ are just saying all the right things about what is current right now.

      They could just as easily grind Liddell into the dust, run it at is best possible, wring all they can out of it, and just let it ‘croak’ of itself.

      But now, having watched it on a daily basis for the last ten Months with my data Posts on this Base Load thing, it is obvious that AGL is doing all it can to get the best out of this aging plant. They’ve done a lot of work, seemingly on two or three of the Units, because they have been ‘down’ for so long, one Unit at a time, sometimes two, and now it looks like they are all doing okay.

      It seems odd to me that they would do what looks to be very expensive work over a long period to get the Units back to as good as they can be considering their age, and then just arbitrarily turn them off.

      Why would they be doing that, spending so much money if they can’t keep them operational for as long as is possible, probably more than the four years left in them. They are also doing major work at the nearby Bayswater, so they want as much as they can get out of those (eight Units in total) two plants for as long as they can to recoup that expense.

      As I said, forgive my cynicism, but I suspect that they are saying the ‘right’ things now, and (just like me) thinking that all this cr@p about CO2 emissions, and the vilification of coal fired power will pass, when the truth gets out about how important it really is.

      Then, they will come out with the news that they can ‘save’ us, because Liddell still has plenty of good (well good enough anyway) years still left in it, and make plans to replace it with new tech coal fired plants.

      I have this nagging idea that the whole shutting it all down thing is just a diversion to placate the current thinking.

      The work that they have (pretty obviously) done at Liddell and Bayswater is not cheap at all, and with these two plants delivering a constant and reliable and huge amount of power, the income from the sale of that electricity is huge, and the longer they keep them going, the more they get. I really cannot imagine they (as a Company) would cut their 0wn thr0ats, figuratively speaking by doing away with such a huge income, probably in the vicinity of $400 to $500+ Million per annum, (just from Liddell alone) money they could never make from any of their renewables.

      Tony.

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      • #
        Robber

        But just watch their ads: AGL is getting out of coal. “Starting in 2022 and ending by 2050, we are getting out of coal. We already run Australia’s largest solar and wind farms. We’ve also started a fund that will put up to $3 billion into making renewable energy for everyone.”

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        • #
          Annie

          I just had a look….just see their politically correct self-imposed halo…it goes on and on.

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          • #
            Annie

            Having said that, I hope Tony is right.

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            • #
              TdeF

              Everyone is gaming the electricity system. Malcolm’s pretend Liberal party, the Greens, Labor and all the electricity companies with the enthusiastic support of their shareholders, the windfarm owners who would lose money without the RET, the overseas investors and of course all the people who sell, make, deliver, install and service the thousands of giant windmills and millions of solar panels at our expense. Everyone’s nose in the trough, especially the politicians who long ago forgot about their constutients and are all trying to please the Greens, GetUP and the Unions. Somewhere in the middle the entire population of Australia was ignored.

              This is the new reality, the couldn’t care less politicians, no principles, no morality, all greed. No wonder they had to get rid of Abbott! He really has risked his life many times for others in the surf, in bushfires. He has very strong principles and he even strongly espouses a Christian religion. He had to go. Ruins the game for everyone else.

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        PeterS

        Perhaps AGL was trying to panic Turnbull into handing over some money. Big business is often like a game of chess with the customers being the pawns sacrificed at their whim.

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        Kinky Keith

        Thanks for this insight Tony. It probably puts us ahead of governments in understanding what’s happening.

        It’s also reassuring to feel that the intention is to keep the plant functioning, at least for the moment.

        KK

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        • #
          PeterS

          How come it didn’t work that way with Hazelwood? Perhaps the difference with Liddell is that Turnbull has woken up to the fact things are falling apart and he’s panicking, trying to find a way to keep it open for much longer. That’s the main reason he announced the water battery idea – to try and introduce some stability in the supply of power. Of course they are too little too late.

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      • #
        robert rosicka

        Tony they may have done some work to them so they can flog them off at a good price .

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      • #
        Geoffrey Williams

        Seem to be mixed messages from AGL but I’ll go with your thinking Tony. Bit of a balancing act it seems and of course they are not without a safety net. Just hope that some form of sanity prevails.
        GeoffW

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    pat

    7 Apr: Bolt Blog: MCCRANN REWRITES KELLY
    Paul Kelly earlier this week:
    ‘The idea that drives the latest core conservative revolt — a new coal-fired power station run by the government, if needed — is delusional and flawed at every point. It fails on policy, politics and consumer grounds. The conservatives are becoming coal power socialists. They are losing the plot.’

    McCrann’s column today:
    …’The reason the government has to build is as depressing as it is simple: no private capital will commit to a four-to-five-year build and a 40-50-year lifespan, given the guarantee of anti-coal policy stupidity which would render it utterly uneconomic….
    ‘It is an utter nonsense to say that would be interfering in the market. The government is already doing that by mandating (useless) wind and solar and spending at least $4 billion (the cost of a new coal station) every year to subsidise them.
    ‘To say nothing of the “big battery”: Snowy 2.0.’

    UPDATE
    There may be good arguments against what Tony Abbott and the Monash Forum propose.
    But Peter van Onselen does not give them. Here, instead, is how he attacks Abbott’s plan to build a coal-fired power station to increase supply and lower prices:

    … reactionary conservatives … inappropriately named club… self-important … sniper … agrarian socialists … delcons … uninspiring … no wonder Cory Bernardi chose to break away … delcons …. motivated by spite … not-so-secret society … delcons … truly delusional … Peta Credlin … base economic stupidity … hypocritical … harebrained plan … outsiders … Where were they during the first two years of the Coalition government? Perhaps too busy retreating from support for the world’s most generous paid parental leave scheme…. It’s hard to take any of what this lot comes up with very seriously, even when they advocate good ideas (give me some time to think of one) … delcons … grandiose … red herring … charge of the light brigade … delcons … foolish … sniper platoon … hostility … all the courage of the lion in The Wizard of Oz without the ending … the Monash snipers … dissent rather than loyalty … {Abbott] a policy weathervane his whole career… The only two consistencies have been his support for the monarchy and for Credlin … to wound Turnbull … fighting over a stripped carcass, the way vultures and hyenas may do … his small band of merry supporters…

    Bolt: But what free-market principles exist in the electricity system, when van Onselen himself half-acknowledges that government policies, restrictions, subsidies and targets have so utterly corrupted the market that few investors would dare risk their cash?:

    … ‘banks aren’t willing to fund a new coal-fired power station because they know there won’t be a return on the investment’

    So in this long diatribe against Abbott’s idea, van Onselen includes just six words of genuine argument against, weakened by 22 words of concessions in its favor.

    The rest is mere abuse.
    http://www.heraldsun.com.au/blogs/andrew-bolt/mccrann-rewrites-kelly/news-story/99bb2a0c46092838847151229baca455

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    pat

    7 Apr: Bolt Blog: an hour ago: VICTORIA GONE WITH THE WIND
    Lucky that Victoria – or South Australia, for that matter – weren’t relying on wind power this morning to keep on the lights. From the National Energy Market website…

    And South Australia – the most wind-reliant state – once again has the highest power prices and the least reliability…
    http://www.heraldsun.com.au/blogs/andrew-bolt/victoria-gone-with-the-wind/news-story/b904d484e06d70d38ea7e77cb02324bd

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    pat

    only negative:

    Mr Macfarlane said the industry was concerned about the impacts of Aurizon’s planned maintenance program on the Central Queensland Coal Network.

    read all if you wish to see what that entails.

    7 Apr: Mining.com: Qld coal, minerals exports propels Palaszczuk Government to trade target
    by Queensland Resources Council
    Queensland coal and mineral exports grew by $5.6 billion over the last 12 months, propelling the Palaszczuk Government beyond its target for a 22% share of national trade.
    Queensland Resources Council Chief Executive Ian Macfarlane said data released by the Government today showed the State’s coal and minerals, excluding LNG, alumina and selected coals, accounted for $37.6 billion – or 53% – of the State’s total $70 billion in commodity exports in the 12 months until the end of February this year. That’s in addition to billions of dollars of value-added resources like LNG and alumina.

    “The men and women working across Queensland can be proud of the $70 billion result. It means more jobs and more revenue for Queensland. In terms of the resources sector, it also means more royalties for the State Government to reinvest in services and infrastructure,” he said.
    “The resources sector is the largest contributor to Queensland exports, and that is growing. Coal exports increased by $4.8 billion – or 19% – to more than $30 billion, while minerals exports also enjoyed double-digit growth (11%) to $7.3 billion over the last 12 months.”…
    “Without coal and mineral exports, Queensland’s share of Australia’s exports would be only 11%. If we had not enjoyed growth in coal and mineral exports over the last 12 months, Queensland’s share of Australia’s exports would be 21.3% – below the Government’s target,” he said…

    Deputy Premier and Treasurer Jackie Trad acknowledged this growth on ABC Radio yesterday: “Our exports have increased, but we are seeing particularly strong revenue return from royalties on coal.”…

    The Queensland resources sector now provides one in every $6 dollars in the Queensland economy, sustains one in eight Queensland jobs, and supports more than 16,400 business across the State all from 0.1% of Queensland’s land mass…
    http://www.mining.com/web/qld-coal-minerals-exports-propels-palaszczuk-government-trade-target/

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      pat

      US eyes opening as Aurizon tensions loom over coal market
      The Australian-18 hours ago
      Fears of disruptions to Australia’s mammoth steelmaking coal export operations — the world’s largest — have arrested a slide in seaborne coal prices and may spark extra demand for American cargoes at a time when producers of many other commodities face rising trade tensions…

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    pat

    6 Apr: UK Telegraph: Prince Charles calls for ‘blue economy’ to save Australia’s Great Barrier Reef
    By Our Foreign Staff
    The Prince of Wales, who is passionate about the environment and promoting sustainability, said society was “truly at a crossroads” in its ability to protect the world’s reefs.
    “This will need to be a central aspect of the rapidly emerging concept of a sustainable ’blue economy’, through which sustainable economic development is achieved via the wise use of ocean resources,” he told the Australian Financial Review in an interview…

    The prince said investment in projects promoting coral reef health and their resilience against global and ocean warming were needed…
    Prince Charles was visiting Lady Elliot Island, a coral cay at the southern tip of the Barrier Reef, for a roundtable discussion with business leaders on the role they can play in conservation.
    His visit has prompted A$10 million (£7.1 million)) in donations for conservation efforts, with Australian property giant Lendlease donating A$5 million and Canberra matching the amount.
    Other companies involved in the roundtable include mining giant BHP, airline Qantas, aerospace titan Boeing and the Walt Disney Company…

    Prince Charles added in the interview that it was crucially important that world transitions to a low-carbon economy “which more closely mirrors nature’s own economy where nothing is wasted”.
    “Whatever the case, we must act before it is to late,” he said.
    Earlier, the prince visited Bundaberg Distillery, where he created his own blend of rum.
    Presented with three test tubes of alcohol at one of Australia’s most famous distilleries, and instructed to mix them together, the prince joked: “It’s like chemistry.”
    And he confessed: “I was never any good at chemistry at school.”…
    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2018/04/06/prince-charles-calls-blue-economy-save-australias-great-barrier/

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    pat

    6 Apr: CNBC: China is massively betting on coal outside its borders — even as investment falls globally
    •China is still investing massively in coal projects outside its shores, notably in places linked to the Belt and Road project.
    by Huileng Tan
    Chinese financial institutions are the world’s largest investor of overseas coal plants, pumping in $15 billion in coal projects from 2013 to 2016 through international development funds, according to the Natural Resources Defense Council, a U.S.-based non-profit environmental advocacy group. There’s another $13 billion in proposed funding…

    CoalSwarm, which describes itself as a network of researchers studying fossil fuels and alternatives, estimated Chinese firms are involved in the construction, ownership, or financing of at least 16 percent of all coal-fired power stations under development outside China.
    By the end of 2016, Chinese companies and banks had been involved in 240 coal-fired power projects in 25 of the 65 countries along the Belt and Road, according to research released in May 2017 by the Beijing-based Global Environment Institute…

    “If China wants to enhance its leadership on climate and ‘ecological civilization’, Chinese companies’ and banks’ investment must steer away from coal towards renewable alternatives such as wind and solar and help countries along Belt and Road to leapfrog from traditional development model that sacrifices environment for economic advancement,” said (Huang Wei, a climate and energy campaigner at Greenpeace East Asia)…

    East Asian economic powerhouses Japan and South Korea are also pumping money into the fossil fuel.
    According to the report from Greenpeace and others, Japan is the second biggest recent public financier of overseas coal-fired power capacity, with $10 billion invested in coal projects from 2013 to 2016. Another $9 billion in proposed funding out of Japan is in the pipeline…
    Coal is cost efficient and supply threats from geopolitics are low, Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry has said…

    South Korea, meanwhile, has financed $8 billion in overseas coal power projects since 2008.
    https://www.cnbc.com/2018/04/06/china-is-massively-betting-on-coal-outside-its-shores–even-as-investment-falls-globally.html

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    pat

    6 Apr: Newcastle Herald: Resources Minister urges AGL to sell Liddell before backing coal industry at mining lunch
    by Ian Kirkwood
    PHOTO GALLERY: 4 OF 6 PICS FEATURE MAX OF 12 “LOCK THE GATE” PROTESTERS

    RESOURCES Minister Matt Canavan toured the Liddell power station on Friday, conceding it needed work to bring it up to scratch but urging owner AGL to ‘put a for sale sign’ on the controversial asset.
    As the main speaker at the launch of this year’s Hunter Coal Festival, the senator’s visit to the Hunter had been locked in for months. The political scrum over Liddell heightened interest in his visit, and it was a near full-house in Club Singleton, where a group of Lock The Gate protesters had gathered to make their views heard and seen…

    Criticising Labor and the Greens for an approach that regarded renewables as “good” and coal as “bad”, Senator Canavan said Australia needed cheap and affordable power. If it wanted any future as an industrial nature it would have to find a way to arrest its escalating energy prices – a warning that applied to gas as well as electricity.

    Senator Canavan said anyone who believed the coal industry was in “structural decline” did not understand “basic maths”. While Australian coal exports may have levelled out in recent years, even conservative estimates of future global energy needs showed big increases in the tonnages of coal to be consumed.

    He said “high energy low emission” or HELE power stations were a third more efficient than Liddell-type power stations, and he urged the building of one in the Hunter region, which was home to Australia’s thermal coal export industry.

    Senator Canavan’s assessment of the situation was endorsed by the head of Glencore’s Australian coal business, Peter Freyberg, who said that if energy prices continued to rise, industry would “go offshore”. He said energy costs were hitting everyone from the biggest power users, such as smelters, down to the household consumer.
    He said prices had spiked in Victoria last year when the Hazelwood power station shut, and people “shouldn’t be surprised at another jump” if Liddell shut in 2022.

    Senator Canavan stressed the government’s doubts about AGL’s post-Liddell plan, saying it had only financially committed to upgrading the Bayswater power station, and question marks remained over the rest of the scheme.
    While Senator Canavan was in Singleton, AGL chief executive Andy Vesey was defending his company’s approach at a Sydney business lunch, saying it had time to “get it right” over Liddell.
    “We don’t want to have another Hazelwood-esque event,” Mr Vesey said…
    http://www.theherald.com.au/story/5328149/matt-canavan-urges-agl-to-put-a-for-sale-sign-on-liddell/

    behind paywall:

    AGL’s Liddell shutdown ‘smacks of gouging’
    In-Depth-The Australian-14 hours ago

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      Dennis

      I wonder how many major shareholders in AGL Limited are becoming very nervous, and doubtful about their green CEO’s political motivation?

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        PeterS

        Have they noticed AGL’s share price has been falling significant for almost a year now despite their huge profits? What gives? Is this why AGL wants to scrap coal and move totally to renewables? Short term financial survival, despite the long term economic harm to the nation? How come a country like China (and many others) maintain that coal will be used to generate the vast majority of their energy needs for a very long time? What makes us so special that we can thumb our noses to basic economics and let companies profit while the country heads to economic self-destruction? Would a leader of any other nation allow this to happen under their watch? Of course not because they would understand the practicalities, and they would look after the nation’s interests first. We on the other hand are a country with both major parties in agreement on how to commit economic suicide.

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        yarpos

        zero. share price + dividends, thats all they care about (and so would I)

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    Dennis

    Kill the goose that lays the golden eggs

    Destroy a source of riches through stupidity or greed, as in If he never gives his loyal customers a break on some items in his store, he’ll kill the goose that lays the golden eggs . This expression, already a proverb in the late 1400s, alludes to Aesop’s fable about a farmer whose goose lays one golden egg a day, and who kills the goose in the mistaken belief that he’ll get all the eggs at once.

    Raise the price of energy artificially for short term profit and ignore the consumers who go off grid and major consumers who go offshore.

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      PeterS

      Meanwhile we keep exporting our coal to the rest of the world where hundreds more coal fired power stations are being built as we speak with hundreds more to come. Why don’t we just force everyone to become coal miners and forget about renewables and coal fired power stations, and just work off cheap batteries supplied and charged by China? That way it’s a win-win for everyone. Of course we could go the other way and stop coal exports as the Greens like to do and fill the whole countryside with wind and solar farms. It will cost trillions of dollars but as we already know the left have no problem spending money like there is no tomorrow.

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      yarpos

      I the early 70s mt then boss worried that Australia would just become a quarry for the world.

      He was only wrong in as much as massive gas reserves had not been developed yet.

      We sell off and destroy every aspect of natural advantages, time and time again. The overseas companies that rape and pillage Australia, must be amazed that we are so stupid and complacent as a country.

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    pat

    dream on:

    6 Apr: Phys.org: Solar PV and wind are on track to replace all coal, oil and gas within two decades
    by Andrew Blakers And Matthew Stocks, The Conversation
    (Andrew Blakers receives funding from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency; Matthew Stocks receives funding from ARENA for the Australian Atlas of Pumped Hydro)
    The protestation from some politicians that we need to build new coal stations sounds rather quaint…
    Complete replacement of all fossil fuels requires solar and wind collectors covering much less than 1% of the world’s land surface area. A large proportion of the collectors are installed on rooftops and in remote and arid regions, thus minimising competition with food production and ecosystems…

    The more widely PV and wind generation are distributed across the world, the less the risk of wide-scale disruption from natural disasters, war and terrorism…
    Other clean energy technologies can realistically play only a minor supporting role…

    PV and wind are often described as “intermittent” energy sources. But stabilising the grid is relatively straightforward, with the help of storage and high-voltage interconnectors to smooth out local weather effects…
    By far the leading storage technologies are pumped hydro and batteries, with a combined market share of 97%…

    The cost of PV and wind power has been declining rapidly for many decades and is now in the range A$55-70 per megawatt-hour in Australia…
    Solar PV and wind have been growing exponentially for decades and have now reached economic lift-off…
    PV and wind are growing at such a rate that the overall installed generation capacity of PV and wind has reached half that of coal, and will pass coal in the mid-2020s, judging by their respective trends…
    Together, PV and wind currently produce about 7% of the world’s electricity. Worldwide over the past five years, PV capacity has grown by 28% per year, and wind by 13% per year. Remarkably, because of the slow or nonexistent growth rates of coal and gas, current trends put the world on track to reach 100% renewable electricity by 2032.

    Deep cuts (80% reduction) in greenhouse gas emissions require that fossil fuels are pushed out of all sectors of the economy. The path to achieve this is by electrification of all energy services…
    Electrifying the whole energy sector of our economy of course means that electricity production needs to increase massively – roughly tripling over the next 20 years…
    https://phys.org/news/2018-04-solar-pv-track-coal-oil.html

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        robert rosicka

        I see you’ve attracted the attention of the red thumb troll , have you been using that “coal” word in vain again Dennis .

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      yarpos

      “Deep cuts (80% reduction) in greenhouse gas emissions require that fossil fuels are pushed out of all sectors of the economy. The path to achieve this is by electrification of all energy services…
      Electrifying the whole energy sector of our economy of course means that electricity production needs to increase massively – roughly tripling over the next 20 years…”

      How cosmically stupid and disconnected from reality is the line of logic? push out fossil fuels and “of course” triple electricity production over 20 years. Its like Germany never happened. Like all socialist dreams , it will be better this time.

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      PeterS

      Relying on renewables alone is pushing prices higher? Don’t they really mean relying on renewables more than say 20%? We already have gone past that stage. I suppose it takes time for facts to sink into some people due to their thick skulls and puny brains.

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    Dennis

    Alinta Energy is an Australian generation, electricity and gas retailing private company that is owned by Hong Kong-based Chow Tai Fook Enterprises (CTFE).[2] Alinta Energy has an owned and contracted generation portfolio of up to 1,957 MW, approximately 800,000 combined electricity and gas retail customers and around 410 employees across Australia and New Zealand.[1]

    In March 2011, due to a deleveraging transaction by the TPG Group, Alinta became Alinta Energy.[3] In November 2017, Alinta Energy bought Loy Yang B Power Station in Victoria, Australia from Engie and Mitsui for $1 billion.[4]

    Wikipedia

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      el gordo

      You will notice that all the power stations under the Alinta umbrella are gas fired, but this foray into coal could be a game changer.

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        Dennis

        Loy Yang B Power Station Victoria is brown coal fired, acquired November 2017 and in January 2018 a spare generator was shipped out to Siemens in Germany for maintenance.

        Hopefully the start of a major maintenance programme.

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      el gordo

      Also the Greens were unhappy that Alinta bought Loy Yang B, which counts as a plus.

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      PeterS

      Funny how Chinese companies are gradually taking over our industries yet no one from either major party thinks twice that China is the greatest builder of coal fired power stations; something like 700 in total all over the world. Yet if China announced they were to build just one here the two parties would go crazy and burn the house down, metaphorically speaking. This nation is mad and on the road to economic self-destruction. It needs to change, and done quickly.

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    Geoffrey Williams

    ‘AGL won’t sell Liddel because then electricity prices will get less’ That says it all. And we live in a (supposedly) democratic country. I don’t think so, and it’s only gonna get worse before it can get better. I think it could take many years yet to turn around. We are in for a severe dose of Labour Green horshite after the next election which will hopefully bring the country to it’s senses. But maybe not. Tough times ahead. Bunker in gents.
    GeoffW

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    TdeF

    Political nonsense.

    Peter Van Onsolen says building a new coal power station is socialist and stupid. No such comment about Turnbull’s big battery though.

    Paul Kelly is just steaming at the thought that Abbott would use public money to build something. That’s socialism!

    and not to be outdone, Dennis Shannahan on Turnbulls own goal

    “Indeed, they say there is likely to be a 31st, a 32nd and probably onwards to a 35th and 36th loss because there is little the government can do to stir a disconnected, disenchanted and uninterested voting public into seriously considering how they will vote at the next election.”

    So It’s our fault?

    So the entire fault is with a “disconnected, disenchanted and uninterested voting public”.
    Tony Abbott won in a landslide on this issue and the boat invasion, unlike his assassin who won by one seat.

    I know most Australians want what we had just a few years ago, the cheapest, most reliable and adequate power supply in the world, not this Canberra created disaster and the world’s most expensive electricity. It takes a new class of politician and journalist to not see that people are angry.

    We are offered a choice between Bill Shorten, Richard Di Natalie and Malcolm Turnbull who all want to shut down coal fired power and chase the Green vote.

    Blame the public lack of interest? Blame the public’s stupidity and their inability to shop. Just blame everyone else for this disaster, supported by Green socialist journalists who can justify an uncosted massive man made waterfall but not coal power as used by everyone else in the world.

    Whoever promises to undo what utterly mad politicians have done will romp home.
    Disconnected, disenchanted and uninterested? No Peter, very angry and frustrated and given a choice between the Three Stooges.
    I am also talking about three journalists in the Australian.

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    TdeF

    Consider this article in the Australian by Andrew White and Matt Chambers

    “Last week, the Australian Energy Regulator said the Hazelwood closure had been largely responsible for 2017’s doubling of power prices in NSW and Victoria.

    Appalling

    Then “We need a national energy policy that delivers on price and delivers on reliability,” Mr Freyberg said.
    Really? Another law?

    “The reality is coal currently underpins energy security in Australia. If we are to sustain a strong economy going forward, we should factor in high efficiency, low emission coal into our future energy options.”

    “He said the National Energy Guarantee was a good first step and Glencore would look at the merits of the plan when the details became known.”

    So the National Energy Guarantee is good enough security, once the details become known? We are banking on an unknown law to fix a problem produced by the closure of a power station which does not need to close? Like Hazelwood.

    At what point do people just shake their heads at the utter nonsense being spouted by AGL, Freydenberg, Turnbull, Shorten, Di Natalie.

    My favorite remains Di Natlie’s appalling ignorance of basic chemistry as a GP, that Whyalla “can keep making steel as long as they don’t use coal.” It does not compare with Vesey’s statement that closing Liddell will decrease electricity prices.

    The whole situation is caused by the RET, the elephant in the room, a law which makes windfarms profitable when not working, which forces the closure of the biggest cheapest supplier and steals our money to pay strangers for windmills. This is beyond wrong, this is theft, rewarding the worst supplier with billions of our cash for failure.

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    TdeF

    Or if you want a summary of how the law works, try the Hepburn Springs Annual report for one windmill.

    Electricity Sales $437,210
    Operating expenses $329,604
    Finance expenses $55,657
    Renewable energy certificate sales (gift) $734,674

    Earnings EBITDA $793,923
    Depreciation $458,733
    Profit $213,963

    They would have lost heaps if they were not gifted nearly twice their electricity earnings in free money from your electricity bills.

    This is an established business which loses huge amounts of money generating electricity but we give them cash to make them profitable? Why? When does this end? Why do we have to pay to run a failed business?

    When can every other business in Australia be given other people’s cash because politicians prefer wind type electricity?

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      TdeF

      We could stop drinking with this same approach in pubs. A new law to protect people from themselves.

      So for every glass of beer you buy, you have to pay twice as much to the owner of a coffee shop. Not for coffee, but the right to buy beer.

      Pubs would have to buy LGCs from the local coffee shop, Large Gratis Coffee certificates. All must be hidden in the price of a beer. Very soon the pub would close because no one could afford a beer. Cunning, eh?

      Someone who owner a pub and a coffee shop would close the pub and collect from everyone else. Enter Andy Vesey.

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      TdeF

      For those interested in 2017, the detailed accounts are not published but..

      This year our energy yield was notably lower than previous years,
      but thanks to high energy prices our income was 19% higher than last year, at $1,375,798.

      and they have paid off the bank loan 10 years early! Its all profit now, no debts and even though they sell less electricity which roughly matches running costs, the LGC cash keeps rolling in.

      We the people have bought a free windmill for the members and even if it doesn’t make a profit,
      the best bit is getting paid for electricity produced by other people.

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        TdeF

        Consider that even at the world’s highest energy prices, a single windmill cannot make a profit. Electricity prices would have to double again for this windmill to break even! How does anyone argue that wind is cheaper?

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    el gordo

    Breaking Nooze

    A gaping hole has opened up on the sun and a CME is expected to bombard earth in days.

    https://wattsupwiththat.files.wordpress.com/2018/04/latest_512_01931.jpg

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    pat

    7 Apr: AFR Op-ed: The lost diaries of coal-luvvie Sir John Monash
    by Rowan Dean
    Satire. The world of revisionist historians was rocked to its core this week when the descendants of Australia’s greatest military mind and the original builder of coal-fired power plants objected to his surname being used by a coal lobbying group, revealing that he was in fact a, er, progressive renewables climate change luvvie…READ ON
    http://www.afr.com/opinion/columnists/the-lost-diaries-of-coalluvvie-sir-john-monash-20180406-h0yeza

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    pat

    behind paywall:

    6 Apr: WaPo: Why have we done so little to tackle climate change?
    The first of two volumes, jointly called “The Carbon Ideologies,” the whole book is written as a letter to the future. “Someday,” it begins, “perhaps not long from now, the inhabitants of a hotter, more dangerous and biologically diminished planet than the one on which I lived may wonder what you and I were thinking…

    published here. lol:

    6 Apr: EdwardsvilleIntelligencer: Book World: Why we can’t comprehend climate change
    by Meara Sharma, The Washington Post
    No Immediate Danger: Volume One of Carbon Ideologies
    by William T. Vollmann
    Viking. 601 pp. $40

    A decade ago, the environmental philosopher Timothy Morton invented a new word: hyperobject. It describes something so “massively distributed in time and space relative to humans” that it eludes our understanding. The best example of a hyperobject is climate change. Its scale confounds our perception. It is everywhere-”viscous,” as Morton has it – and yet it is hard to see directly. Its implications are so great that they verge on unthinkable.

    William T. Vollmann’s new book, “No Immediate Danger,” tussles with the comprehension-defying nature of climate change. It is a 600-page amalgam of scientific history, cultural criticism, mathematical experiments, risk-benefit analyses of energy production and consumption, and diaristic meanderings through radiation-festooned landscapes post-Fukushima. The effect is bewildering.

    The first of two volumes, jointly called “The Carbon Ideologies,” the whole book is written as a letter to the future. “Someday,” it begins, “perhaps not long from now, the inhabitants of a hotter, more dangerous and biologically diminished planet than the one on which I lived may wonder what you and I were thinking, or whether we thought at all. This book is for them.” We know more today about the effects of climate change than ever before (although, as Vollmann and others have noted, we’ve really known for a half a century). We are experiencing heightened storms, record droughts, rising seas and temperatures, increased pollution. And yet we have done little to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions, which are at record highs. The concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is at a level not seen since the Pliocene era – more than 3 million years ago. Why so little action? Is it because many of us don’t care about some “ecosystem somewhere”? Because the science lacks certainty? Because of companies’ concerns about their profits? Because of data suppression? Because it is easier not to act? These questions course through the book.

    “No Immediate Danger” is divided in two parts, beginning with a primer. It is a kind of encyclopedia of the causes of climate change, including manufacturing, transportation, agriculture and industrial chemicals, with occasional stretches of commentary and analysis that are some of the most compelling parts of the book. In the opening section, titled “What Was the Work For?” Vollmann acerbically logs the small, seemingly routine comforts that many of us enjoy – the ability to wake up and turn on the lights, to shower at will, to cook with gas, to take fresh vegetables out of the refrigerator, to leave our devices plugged into the wall, to wash clothes in a machine, to throw out our trash, to cool our houses, to heat our houses, and on and on. “I think we felt a kind of grandness to have so many energies at our call, even if we rarely thought about our situation,” he writes. “Why shouldn’t they serve us faithfully?” (In 2012, 61 percent of power in the United States was wasted). It’s an elegant indictment of the mundane behaviors that require immense amounts of carbon-emitting fuel, and the ways we’ve structured our world around fulfilling and continually augmenting energy demand. “In each two days of 2009,” Vollmann points out, “the world burned the entire oil output of 1990.”…

    There are swifter, simpler, more efficient ways to learn about how human impact on the planet has set us striding into a “hot, dark future.” But “No Immediate Danger” – written as calculated denial becomes policy – takes a tack that feels appropriate. It is overwhelming. It drowns us in calculations, facts, images, stories. It embodies the confusion of our current moment, the insidiousness of disbelief, and the mania-inducing reality that our greatest threat is the hardest to act upon. It is a feverish, sprawling archive of who we are, and what we’ve wrought…

    In describing the vast amounts of research, travel, personal expense, risk and, indeed, energy consumption he engaged in to write this book, Vollmann admits to the reader from the future that much of it had to do with assuaging his own guilt, avoiding the shame of doing nothing. “Well, in the end I did nothing just the same,” he concedes. “And the same went for most everyone I knew.”
    https://www.theintelligencer.com/entertainment/article/Book-World-Why-we-can-t-comprehend-climate-change-12812680.php

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    PeterF

    There is some good information in this post but unfortunately leads to the wrong conclusions.
    1. the energy market is run in 5 minute intervals so the short run marginal cost is what it costs to produce power for the next 5 minutes. It does not include staff because you can’t clock them off for 5 minutes, it doesn’t include maintenance and it doesn’t include interest and depreciation. It only includes fuel and some other consumables and waste disposal costs.
    In the case of Liddell AGL will spend around $250 m in 8 years on large upgrade projects. That is $3.50/MWh. a Standard figure for operation and routine maintenance is $20/MWh. So the $20/MWh that Liddell can quote for the next 5 minutes becomes $43/MWh over 5 years. This assumes it can continue to get cheap coal. The current market price for 5,500 kcal coal is US$65/tonne. As it has been reported that the Liddell mine is close to running out of coal then the coal cost will be A$48-50/MWh. i.e. before major upgrade the breakeven costs will be $65-75/MWh. This is more than the current costs of wind + RECs.
    2. Liddell is not 2,000 MW it has been de-rated to 1,680 MW and it hasn’t even achieved that in the last few years, notably a maximum of 1,000 MW in Feb 2017. A coal plant is not a peaker, it can’t survive just on peak capacity, it needs to sell 6,000 to 8,000 GWh per year to be viable. Demand on the NEM is slowly declining, it is up and down but the trend is down by 1,500-3,000 GWh per year so by 2022 demand will have fallen by 7-15,000 GWh per year. Between Jan 1 2017 and Dec 31st 2022 there will be between 6 and 10 GW of rooftop solar installed, that will generate between 7,000 and 13,000 GWh per year depending on efficiency. Thus demand for thermal power will fall by 14,000 and 28,000 GWh the midpoint is more than combined output of Hazelwood and Liddell. Now some of the change could be at the expense of gas but gas only generates about 20,000 GWh per year on the NEM so it is not all going away so coal will lose market share even if there was no utility wind or solar.
    However there is plenty of utility wind and solar coming on line about 6-7 GW of wind alone and approximately 4 GW of solar but 10′s of GW more in the pipeline. Just the contracted wind and solar plants which will always win at the 5 minute auction will generate 22,000 GWh from wind and the solar about 9,500 GWh.

    In total if no utility more wind and solar is contracted, (very unlikely because they are far cheaper than a thermal plant which has to pay market price for fuel) demand for coal and gas power will fall be about 50,000 GWh. That is 6 times Liddell’s output. Why would any generator wan’t to keep old unreliable capacity on line in the face of such a glut.

    [Some supporting links would be good to see. Your comment could be a summary with references to the complete information. Shorter comments tend to get read by more people than longer ones. Thanks] AZ

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