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The cost of one days electricity on the Australian grid is three times (or 50 times) more than it was in 2012

There were no headlines but $300 million dollars was burned at the stake of renewables

Just another day on the exciting Australian NEM.

Friday week ago we had another price spike hitting the $14,500 mandated price cap. On that day South Australians and Victorians paid a blistering $61 million and $210 million respectively. That’s the cost of a single day’s electricity on what was a hot day (but not a record) for Melbourne (38C) and Adelaide (42C). These are temperatures that those cities often reach in summer. It was about 28C in the other three capital cities. Don’t be fooled — high temperatures are not the reason for the price spikes — as it happens, NSW used 22% more electricity than Victoria that day yet paid 90% less.

Thanks to David Bidstrup for calculating these numbers (MSWord file).

Total cost of wholesale electricity for one day, March 1st, 2019, AEMO. Graph, Australia, NEM.

But even NSW and Queensland are pay millions too much

You might think NSW and Queensland have reasonable prices for electricity, but lest we forget, what they pay today is still three times more expensive than they would have been if they were paying 2012 prices. Long ago in the renewable dark ages the average price of wholesale electricity was $25/MWh — that was the average for the whole month of March 2012.

And in 2012 when Melbourne was hotter (40C on Jan 2nd), the cost of electricity was a mere $31/MWh.

The market is screwed.

Graph, cost of wholesale electricity, SA, Vic, NSW, Qld, Tas, Australia, March 2019, march 2012

On March 1st a price spike cost millions of dollars, but even without the spike prices are still three times more expensive than in 2012. Click to enlarge

The price table with the costs and demand for March 1st, 2019 in each state of Eastern Australia. The lower two rows are the prices and theoretical cost if the same demand was priced at the same rate that each state was paying on an average March day in 2012.

Table, Electricity cost, Wholesale March 1, 2019, Australia.

Table, Electricity cost, Wholesale March 1, 2019, Australia. (Click to enlarge)

This year, the average wholesale price in NSW (so far for the first 10 days of March) is $86/MWh and QLD is $74/MWh. It’s twice that in SA ($198/MWh) and Victoria ($195/MWh) and it’s $119/MWh in Tasmania.

 Prices are off the scale

Renewables fans (like the ABC) will tell us that high prices are caused by old coal, but old coal plants didn’t cause price spikes in 2012. Demand was greater in 2012 than it is today (everyone is using less electricity than they’d like because of the price) and coal power took on more of the load — with less “help” from renewables.

There are more price spikes today, more wind power, more solar power and less coal power. Most owners of coal plants have little incentive to fund and maintain their coal plants. The more coal plants they can shut, the more their other generation assets will earn. Look at what happened to Hazelwood.

The Australian NEM is a giant success for corporate gentailers or State owned generators and totally wrecked for consumers.

 

REFERENCES

The 2012 figures come from the AEMO average price of electricity for the month of March 2012 multiplied by the same demand as on March 1 this year.

Temperatures: Australian Bureau of Meteorology. Max temperatures in Melbourne (38C) and Adelaide (42C) Sydney (28C), Brisbane (29C) and Hobart (28C).

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 9.6/10 (71 votes cast)
The cost of one days electricity on the Australian grid is three times (or 50 times) more than it was in 2012, 9.6 out of 10 based on 71 ratings

Tiny Url for this post: http://tinyurl.com/y54gp4ah

75 comments to The cost of one days electricity on the Australian grid is three times (or 50 times) more than it was in 2012

  • #
    el gordo

    If you think prices are high now, they’ll be through the roof if Labor gets in.

    ‘Coal-fired power generation would fall by 60 per cent in the next decade to meet Labor’s 45 per cent emissions reduction target.’ Oz

    420

    • #
      Sceptical Sam

      If you think prices are high now, they’ll be through the roof if Labor gets in.

      And, so will unemployment, taxation and poverty.

      332

  • #
    thingadonta

    I don’t see what the problem is, the people making the decisions on the nation’s electricity prices are all on high salaries in air conditioned offices which they don’t pay the bills for, so it doesn’t really affect them. (SARC!)

    410

    • #
      Hivemind

      I don’t think that sarc tag was needed. They really don’t care how much power costs to us, since it’s all paid for with other people’s money.

      190

  • #

    For some perspective here, the largest consumers by State rank in this order, New South Wales, Queensland, Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania.

    The big three consume 89% of all generated power. SouthAus 6% and Tasmania 5%.

    The reason Victoria ranks third even though it has the second highest population by State is that Victorian homes and businesses are connected to gas as well as Victoria, while NSW and Qld have nowhere near as much gas supply.

    So, those two higher consuming States have the largest total, and the largest percentage supply coming from coal fired power, which, umm, sort of dispels the myth that coal fired power is more expensive than renewables, because the States with the biggest total and percentage supply from renewables are in fact SouthAus and Victoria, and hey, it’s all old coal really, because we don’t have any new ones at all, and even those four Supercritical plants in Queensland are dated 2001, 2003, 2003, and 2007, so even the most recent is 12 years old.

    Tony.

    450

    • #
      Don A

      Hi Tony, When I read this “The reason Victoria ranks third even though it has the second highest population by State is that Victorian homes and businesses are connected to gas as well as Victoria, while NSW and Qld have nowhere near as much gas supply.” I became confused. Is there another way to say this please?
      Cheers, Don

      10

      • #
        Graeme No.3

        Victorians use piped in natural gas for heating (and cooking) rather than electricity.

        NSW and Qld. have vastly more area and less people get the advantage of piped natural gas. Instead they might use gas cylinders (propane and butane) but cost is a detterent.

        20

  • #

    I think that we should all print this post and send a FLOOD of copies out to PM Morrison and Cabinet, to our local Liberal and Labor MPs and letters to The Editor, Oz Newspaper and any one else you think of.

    280

    • #
      PeterS

      Of course we won’t need to send them to ACP as they already want to smash the renewables scam outright, exit Paris and create incentives to build new coal fired power stations. Funny how the ACP don’t appear to be that popular. I suppose people are not hurting enough yet. They soon will be if ALP+Greens get in.

      301

  • #
    Kinky Keith

    The electricity prices are too high.

    This is wholly a function of Government activity in the pricing structure.

    The pricing mechanism is the way it is so that the system can be gamed.

    Private individuals make huge profits from gaming the system.

    All political partis have friends involved.

    The System is locked and will not be changed.

    Each household is contributing $1,000 annually to this fund.

    This situation is not about poor management or “mistakes”, it’s a very well planned and deliberate scheme.

    All politicians involved in perpetuating this insult to us and our children should be arraigned and tried for the acts committed.

    Sentences should be a minimum of 10 years.

    KK

    430

    • #
      PeterS

      Not enough pain yet. ALP+greens look like winning the next election “in a canter”. The the real pain begins. Perhaps then most Australians will wake up.

      160

    • #
      Peter Fitzroy

      I heartedly agree Kinky Keith. You might want to look at the board members of the regulator (AEMO) to see how this game was set up.

      60

    • #
      Analitik

      I agree to the extent that the LRET has allowed renewable RECs and PPAs to distort the energy market such that ultra low and negative pricing events do not heavily penalise ‘semi-scheduled’ (ie intermittent, non-dispatchable) renewable generators and, just as importantly, that the ‘semi-scheduled’ renewable generators are not required to bid day ahead and guarantee supply the way that dispatchable generators must.

      Don’t rant against the basic market rules which worked just fine until the LRET corrupted it (see page 11 of the following for how the market is SUPPOSED to work)
      http://www.abc.net.au/mediawatch/transcripts/1234_aemo2.pdf

      20

      • #
        Kinky Keith

        Hi Analytic

        Rant??

        Your comment illustrates the deliberate complexity of our electricity system here in Australia.

        It’s deliberately complex for a reason: like water, it’s a basic necessity and so becomes an easy target for the users: government manipulators.

        In my home using standard production and distribution methods the quarterly electricity bill should be $100.

        Why am I paying four times that amount?

        In a local shopping street in our town, one of the busiest outside of the major shopping centres there are four businesses that have recently closed.

        This is unusual and is most likely associated with the recent massive increases in electricity.

        Businesses are under stress from electricity costs.
        This is a real problem, dumped on the innocent by the greedy.

        KK

        10

  • #
    pat

    Sky News just beginning their new hour with the PM rejecting coal:

    11 Mar: Guardian: Scott Morrison rejects Joyce’s ‘hypothetical’ call for greater coal-fired power
    Prime minister says Nationals’ push is ‘hypothetical’ because Queensland would not approve new station
    by Paul Karp & Lisa Cox
    Earlier on Monday, Scott Morrison rebuffed Joyce and insurgent Nationals’ call for more coal-fired power, dismissing it as a “hypothetical debate” because the Queensland government would not approve a new power station…

    Morrison told reporters in Sydney the government was “working through” proposals for the Coalition’s electricity underwriting scheme, which included 10 coal projects among 60 bids.
    “For such a project to proceed, it would require the approval of a Queensland state government,” Morrison said. “The Queensland state government has no intention of approving any such projects. At all.”
    Morrison said his focus was on “things that actually will happen” and “not in hypothetical debates”.
    “I tend to work in the area of the practical, the things that actually can happen, and what actually can happen is the investments that we are making in renewable projects,” he said, citing the Tasmanian “battery of the nation” and Snowy 2.0 pumped hydro project…

    The energy market operator has said the future of power generation will be renewables with storage, and gas, with those technologies able to replace the power currently supplied by coal generators at least cost.
    (Barnaby) Joyce told Radio National that a coal-fired power station “does stack up”…
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/mar/11/scott-morrison-rejects-joyces-hypothetical-call-for-greater-coal-fired-power

    100

  • #
    pat

    11 Mar: ABC: Coal wars escalate as Barnaby Joyce and Michael McCormack battle over Nationals leadership
    By political reporters Brett Worthington and Stephanie Dalzell
    The debate over coal-fired power has created a divide within the Coalition, with fears among Liberals that investing in that form of energy would threaten safe seats in the city.
    Mr Joyce said he would advocate for policies he believed would help regional electorates, irrespective of what Liberal Party politicians wanted.
    “We’re the National Party, we’re our own party and we can pursue policies in our own right,” he said.
    “We are not married to the Liberal Party.
    “If we were going to agree with everything they said, we should join the Liberal Party.”…

    Queensland Nationals told the ABC they wanted coal power generation among the projects shortlisted for taxpayer subsidy, and they wanted Mr McCormack to demand it.
    But the Prime Minister has all but ruled that out, citing opposition from the Queensland Labor Government.
    “The Queensland State Government has no intention of approving any [coal-fired power station] projects — at all,” he said.
    “I tend to work in the area of the practical, the things that actually can happen.
    “What actually can happen is the investment we’re making in renewable projects and reliable projects … because these things actually will happen.”
    https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-03-11/barnaby-joyce-nationals-deputy-prime-minister-carbon-emissions/10888668

    80

  • #
    pat

    as with Angus Taylor on 2GB news item yesterday, Joyce’s phone connection is pathetic.

    around 3min30sec, Fran starts her case for solar/wind being cheaper than coal; plenty in the market who will tell you RE plus storage delivers energy at a lower price; Snowy Hydro is going to deliver power a lot cheaper than coal; you do know there will be a transactional cost to this call for coal come the election; you do accept this will hurt the Govt in seats, such as Warringah; there are polls showing Nats might lose seats in the NSW election. are you putting National seats in peril?

    AUDIO: 12min27sec: 11 Mar: ABC Breakfast: Barnaby Joyce calls for new coal-fired power station in Queensland
    Presenter: Fran Kelly
    The issue has become a flashpoint for the current Nationals leader, Michael McCormack, with speculation a challenge could be mounted before the election.
    https://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/breakfast/joyce-calls-for-new-coal-fired-power-plant-in-queensland/10888328

    50

    • #
      Graeme No.3

      pat:

      Snowy2 the largest and cheapest storage won’t be available until 2024 at the earliest. As Labor goes flat out for renewables be prepared for 6 years of blackouts.

      150

      • #
        yarpos

        There is a cargo cult mentality developing around Snowy 2. Keep it in context with overall demand. I wont change much.

        00

  • #
    JohnM

    Totally agree that renewables greatly increase prices,
    though for some reason 2012 was a good year for wholesale prices.
    Every year before it was more expensive back to 1999.

    YEAR NSW QLD SA SNOWY TAS VIC

    2012 29.67 29.07 30.28 N/A 32.58 27.28

    2007 58.72 52.14 51.61 55.19 49.56 54.80

    2001 37.69 41.33 56.39 37.06 N/A 44.57

    https://aemo.com.au/Electricity/National-Electricity-Market-NEM/Data-dashboard#average-price-table

    2000 28.27 44.11 59.27 27.96 N/A 26.35

    50

    • #

      2007 was a major drought year. The water levels were so low not only was the Snowy Hydro struggling, but I hear even coal fired plants in QLD were finding it hard to get enough cooling water.

      2012 was at the low end but not an outlier. Droughts aside, the average pricing of the NEM was around $30/MWh year after year. (see that top graph in the link. 2012 was similar to about 6 other years). So the current prices are still 3 times more expensive than that long term average.

      With better engineering and efficiencies of scale the price should be stable or going lower (as it did from 1955 – 1995).

      80

  • #
    pat

    Nick Cater was just on Credline/Sky re the following plus re the article in The Australian today (behind paywall) – Half coal plants to shut in ALP plan – which needs to be accessed and excerpted:

    6 Mar: Menzies Research Centre: OMISSIONS TARGET
    Labor has outsourced its electricity-price research to Greenpeace and unsurprisingly overlooked key data
    by Nick Cater
    Labor’s claim that consumers will pay 25 per cent less for electricity under the ALP than under the Coalition is based on unsophisticated modelling commissioned by Greenpeace.
    Labor’s energy spokesman Mark Butler told ABC viewers late last year “that that wholesale power prices under our more ambitious target would be about 25 per cent lower than under the Government’s more modest target.”

    A report by the Menzies Research Centre, however, finds that the RepuTex modelling Butler cited to back his claim was commissioned by Greenpeace and does not model the impact of an economy-wide 45 per cent emissions reduction target.
    Independent modelling by Dr Brian Fisher of BAEconomics released last week forecasts that wholesale price of electricity will rise by 58 per cent under Labor’s proposed economy-wide 45 per cent reduction in emissions by 2030 from 2005 levels.

    The MRC’s report, A Hidden Carbon Tax (LINK), published jointly with the Page Research Centre, models the effect of rising wholesale electricity prices on the price paid by consumers.
    It finds that household bills will increase in real terms by up to $666 a year for a representative household in some states. Operating costs for a representative small business would rise by up to $2,273 a year…

    The Greenpeace/RepuTex report is of limited scope and fails to provide the empirical data required to back up Mr Butler’s claim. The Greenpeace/RepuTex report does not purport to model the transforming effect of a 45 per cent emissions reduction target across the whole economy. It confines itself to examining the effects of a 45 per cent emissions reduction target on the National Electricity Market only.

    Its comparative analysis is based on the Levelised Cost of Electricity (LCOE), a measure favoured by the renewable energy industry to justify their claim that unfirmed renewables are a cheaper source of energy than fossil fuels…

    It is disappointing that Labor should deliberately seek to mislead the public by citing evidence that is flawed in so many respects.
    The costs of transforming the energy sector to meet Labor’s ambitious target in such a short amount of time is huge. To propose such a policy on the basis of a single flawed piece of Greenpeace modelling is reckless to say the least.
    https://www.menziesrc.org/omissions-target

    110

    • #
      RickWill

      The only way to beat the grid economic train wreck is to install your own power supply. Anyone owning a roof can hasten the train wreck. You will be better off keeping the money in your pockets than giving it away to the grid scale generators.

      Tony Abbot has made another crude mistake by no longer supporting Paris exit. He has given in to the unfolding tragedy:
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=317ON173ItE

      No matter how hard the governments try, they have locked in power price rises for the next 20 years. The SA-NSW high capacity link is almost certain to proceed:
      https://reneweconomy.com.au/networks-unveil-new-plan-that-signals-rapid-decline-of-coal-and-gas-10553/

      A major new transmission line linking South Australia and New South Wales is being hailed by its proponents as the answer to the inevitable decline of black coal generation in NSW, and as a substitute to the gas generators that are the principal cause of high wholesale prices in renewables-dominated South Australia.

      Despite claimed wholesale price reduction, this link will help SA consumers slightly but hit NSW consumers hard; NSW also becoming SA as Vic already has. It will guarantee the demise of Liddell sooner than later.

      No one will build a new coal fired station in the next 10 years. Consumers will become accustomed to “load management” and there will need to be much pain before significant new low cost dispatchable generators gets the green light.

      Nothing new – electricity prices will continue to rise and those with the religion will wonder why.

      170

      • #
        Kinky Keith

        That NSW – S.A. link Must Not be built.

        An insult to our intelligence, a sign that all rorting of power supply and distribution processes Will Be Supported whatever the cost to us.

        Sh£t. If the US can install the AOC drone so easily, we have no hope.

        KK

        130

    • #
      shannon

      Hmmm Greenpeace in charge or Labors electricity- pricing research !

      Can we see a connection here between “energy” and whales…???

      Surely we aren’t about to return to the 60s or 70s when whaling was popular to provide oil for many of life’s necessities??

      Hang on a minute ..isnt this the “Green Dream”…..Back to the Future !!…(sarc)

      70

  • #
    pat

    TWEET: The Australian:
    EXCLUSIVE | Coal-fired power generation would fall by 60 per cent in the next decade to meet Labor’s 45 per cent emissions reduction target.
    LINK The Australian: Half coal plants to shut in ALP plan
    Coal-fired power generation would fall by 60 per cent within the next decade to meet Labor’s 45 per cent emissions-reduction target, leading to the likely closure of more…
    10 Mar 2019
    (ALL COMMENTS OK WITH THIS, BAR ONE)
    https://twitter.com/australian/status/1104963156080713729

    TWEET: Geoff Chambers, The Australian:
    Coal-fired power generation would fall by 60 per cent within the next decade to meet Labor’s 45 per cent emissions-reduction target, leading to the likely closure of more than half the existing east coast plants, according to independent expert modelling
    10 Mar 2019
    (COMMENTS NOT OK ABOUT THIS)
    https://twitter.com/Chambersgc/status/1104956958509920256

    60

    • #
    • #
      Maptram

      I’m sure that the supporters of Labor’s plan don’t understand what would be required to replace the 60% coal generators with renewables. From the comments I read, they seem to think you just build renewables to replace the coal plants, but from the discussion over the last couple of days, even 120% renewables to replace the 60% coal would probably not be enough. And we have also had some discussion about the CO2 created in the manufacture, shipping from China, shipping of raw materials to China, transport of components, escorts for the trucks, transmission pylons and cables, land clearing, as well as the ongoing lost CO2 usage from vegetation removed from any renewables site and transmission infrastructure.

      130

      • #
        Dave

        Don’t be surprised to see Elon Musk on the scene very shortly!

        Parasites can smell blood!

        120

        • #
          Robd

          Wind turbines life expired at 25 years or less?
          They will not get cheaper either.
          The transition to nuclear power is inevitably going to be slow and painfull for consumers.
          It didn’t have to be this way – so sad.

          20

          • #
            AndyG55

            “They will not get cheaper either.”

            And without a solid reliable electricity supply, they cannot even be built.

            10

  • #
    DaleC

    I posted these links in Weekend Unthreaded – but here looks more appropriate.
    Unfortunately, since AEMO updates the historical files monthly, I missed 1Mar19 (ends 28Feb), but you can review the Australia Day weekend in all its glory.

    Jo says “Demand was greater in 2012 than it is today”. The peak from AEMO was around 2008-2010, and has been going down except for Queensland, which has surged the last four years.

    Demand and price for each state, two series per chart per state
    http://redcentresoftware.com/wp-content/uploads/AEMO_Demand_and_Price_by_State.xlsx

    Demand comparing all states, 5 series per chart
    Price comparing all states, 5 series per chart
    http://redcentresoftware.com/wp-content/uploads/AEMO_Demand_and_Price_All_States.xlsx

    70

    • #
      RickWill

      The 2019 year data is misleading because it is only the 1st quarter. But the quarterly data for Victoria is still scary.

      The overall data for Victoria highlights the demise of industry in the state. That is what two terms of a Labour government can achieve.

      Given the population has increased by 15% in the last decade brings the reduced grid power consumption into sharper focus. Those who are still consuming electricity without their own generation and benefit of the government largesse will carry an ever increasing burden of the grid costs.

      120

      • #
        Sceptical Sam

        Those who are still consuming electricity without their own generation and benefit of the government largesse will carry an ever increasing burden of the grid costs.

        Figures please Rick.

        Have you done your sums on that?

        It doesn’t work that way for me in WA. Nor for my holiday house in NSW.

        http://joannenova.com.au/2018/12/weekend-unthreaded-241/#comment-2088629

        So what’s different in Victoriastan?

        50

        • #
          RickWill

          My situation is quite different to most. I have on-grid and off-grid systems that earn a bundle because I was an early adopter. My income from electricity export pays for my gas. A bit dated now but similar the last year”
          https://1drv.ms/u/s!Aq1iAj8Yo7jNgm72YoJdtC-n6G5m

          Labor in Victoria are providing up to $2250 in addition to federal sanctioned STC credits meaning a 6.6kW system can be installed for $2774, which can be covered by an interest free loan also from the State after July this year:
          https://www.skysolarenergy.com.au/solar-vic/
          I would be reasonably confident any household could get a payback in 3 to 4 years with a reasonable installation. I believe the current minimum FIT in Victoria is 12c/kWh, which should equate to almost $1000 per year without any internal power consumption that would be valued around 32c/kWh to give greater saving than export. Meaning the loan would be paid back from savings on electricity well before the term of the loan.

          40

          • #
            Sceptical Sam

            Labor in Victoria are providing up to $2250 in addition to federal sanctioned STC credits meaning a 6.6kW system can be installed for $2774, which can be covered by an interest free loan also from the State after July this year:

            Cripes.

            They’ll be paying you to go Vegan next.

            Socialism. It only works until they run out of other people’s money.

            70

          • #
            robert rosicka

            Rick a lot of areas have limits for how much solar you can install , we were limited to 5000 watt and I’ve heard some are even less .
            As for Fit we get about $33 a quarter .

            30

            • #
              RickWill

              There was certainly a 5kW limit applying in Victoria when I had my on-grid system installed but it must be relaxed now. I expect the distributors are trying to handle the reverse power flow better because there are many suppliers advertising 6kW and 6.6kW systems.

              From the submissions to AEMO’s ISP, I observed that the distributors were expecting a strong increase in rooftop generation and were already planning for that.

              You may only get $33 per quarter from the FIT but what is your total power bill and how does that compare with what you would pay without solar?

              Victoria has an incentive program for batteries as well; offering $5000 to help 10,000 households. I will be following that scheme as well. My lithium batteries continue to operate as new after 7 years or so. Any battery system could be set up to operate off-grid although it needs overbuild on the solar panels to be useful in winter. Would pay to set panels to optimise for winter sunlight.

              Grid prices are going up and price for making your own is coming down mostly due to the incentives from the States.

              10

              • #
                oldbrew

                Winter in Oz is on the way out it seems

                00

              • #
                yarpos

                Fair comment Rick, many of my friends are obsessed by FIT and dint even register grid usage avoided (a far bigger number). I guess it that FIT feels like “free” money

                00

    • #
      Bill in Oz

      Ummm What about putting this up on the web somewhere ?

      I tried downloading your Excel files and they just disappeared…Are they on my Mac computer ? Buggered if I know.

      And anyway I am Microsoft phobic !

      20

      • #
        DaleC

        A single click on the link, then select Open (not save), and they should appear within several seconds in Excel.
        The files are hosted in a standard Word-press site – I don’t know why Macs would behave differently.

        20

  • #
    Rob Leviston

    I would sincerely question labor’s intent to cut coal electricity production by 60%. Yes, you could cut the electricity production, it that is all you intended to do.
    But don’t expect unreliable intermittent renewables to fill the gap!
    I haven’t even started to actually crunch the figures, but, as it stands coal provides around 70-75% of our electricity. Renewables, not counting hydro, only supply around 10%. Maybe 15% on a good day, and less than 5% on a bad day!
    So, with all the billions that have already been spent, we have maybe 10% unreliable power! Compound that with the added costs of ‘beefing’ up the ‘pole an wires’ to handle the power coming in from outlying districts, and we have a very expensive, unwieldy system! We have already seen wind farms being curtailed, and I note a recent report that actually downgrades the amount of power that is fed into the grid from various wind farms and solar farms.
    This can only be compounded by trying to insert even more unreliable power units into the grid!
    The other issues, are of course, time and money.
    Do we even have enough of both to replace 30% of our coal fleet with renewables? I doubt it. I think these policies are more rhetoric than substance. I highly doubt these policies have been fully costed!

    100

    • #
      RickWill

      It is only money and none of it theirs. They are encouraging huge expenditure on electrical assets. The “experts” keep telling them that wind and solar is cheaper. They can do back of the envelope calculations themselves to verify it. All that the subsidy farms need to keep investing is “policy certainty” to guarantee the high subsidies for the next 30 years or so.

      If you had not already figured it out, electricity pricing is the easiest path to separate the poor from the small amount of money they have to survive on. It is better than taxation on income because the poor do not have much, if any, income. It takes from the poor and gives to the wealthy and less poor. Electricity supply is better than the banking at getting money to flow from those who need it most to those who desire it most.

      120

  • #
    Serge Wright

    Einstein suggested that the definition of insanity was performing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. Then along came the Greens and proved Einstein was correct.

    180

    • #
      Bill in Oz

      But none of us want to be part of their dopey experiment here in SA.

      Why can’y thye try in out somewhere irrelevant like Norfolk Island ?

      90

  • #
    Serp

    In thirty years this craziness will have exhausted itself (and what remains of the Australian population).

    Anybody who has the wherewithal should be planning a move to the west as it will be decades before an interconnector will destroy its power grid and you will be shielded from the worst extremes of the eastern power market.

    It’s hard to credit how swiftly this irrational renewables zealotry has swept all before it and the last resistance is collapsing as I write –the last thing coal needs is Barnaby Joyce championing it.

    There’s no point in trying to assign blame, that’s a job for future historians; all we can do is marvel at our misfortune and witness our country destroying itself.

    Meanwhile, as an aperitif so to speak, let’s watch the Brexit debacle’s denouement.

    30

  • #
    mike reed

    Hi Toni from OZ can I get your email address : at our tennis club a respected retired (intelligent hospital Pharmacist ) told me that his Mudgee lithium ion
    battery running his “hobby farm” was enough .Then the discussion went onto the Grid -I said that was OK for small remote systems that I run like a boat and motorhome.
    that we have.I then said that our base load power grid system is highly reliant on maintaining the grids frequency within about a half a percent -to this he responded
    that Solar and batteries can smooth out grid frequency problems -So to this -What should I say ??? BS
    Cheers Mike Reed

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      yarpos

      a simple how? might be in order

      it doesnt sounds like either the problem or the alleged snaswer is very well expressed

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    We assume that those implementing these obvious green follies need persuading, or rather dissuading. But what if they knew and didn’t care?

    Some years back, a retired Labor minister who was a notorious dandy (with a Mosman mansion) wrote an article complaining that he’d lunched with Rupert Murdoch and Murdoch had expected him to pay for his own food. Really! Like Rupert had snakes in his pocket! In the same article, our Labor man mentioned that he never wore suits any more…he was just too laid back and egalitarian for all that.

    Some time later I passed the retired Labor minister in Castlereagh Street, and he we was not just wearing a 3-piece pin-stripe suit but sporting more bling than a pox doctor’s clerk.

    I mentioned this to a couple of mates struggling with a new business and they had just this to say: the ex-minister could not care less. He could not care less about what he wrote, or about what he did. If confronted he would laugh his head off. He did not care about workers, or about anybody but those who would pay for his lunch. That’s how he got the nickname “Diamond”. When would I learn?

    So what if the people behind these green initiatives are fully aware of how ruinous and futile they are? Except they do care. They care about hollowing out industry, controlling and rationing all energy and financial movements, shrinking the middle class and implementing their surveillance state.

    You see, coal has brought us light without condition for many decades. But globalists have their own Bringer of Light, if you know what I mean. Maybe we don’t need to persuade, because there is no misunderstanding or error on their part. We just need to beat them.

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    Bill in Oz

    OFF TOPIC : E M Smith at Cheifio’s blog has been busy & productive.
    This time he has produced global charts of the number of weather stations from 1800 up to the present. Just looking at the charts is eye opening. And his conclusion is an extraordinary one :

    In Conclusion : 1 :The data prior to 1900 are too thin to be usable for saying anything about the globe.

    2: Between 1900 and 2000 we get decent global coverage but with exceptional bias toward the USA and Europe with industrializing Asia coming on stream.

    3: We known nearly nothing about the 3/4 of the planet that is the oceans and that contain the bulk of all surface heat.

    4 : After 2000, the thermometer inventory depletes and we are left with too thin a coverage for most of the planet, and in places and ways that are not comparable to the past. We can’t really compare this set of instruments to those different historical sets and really say much of anything about “global change”. We can say a lot about “instrument change”…

    https://chiefio.wordpress.com/2019/03/11/thermometers-over-time/

    Something for the Global warming Alarmists to stick in their pipes and try to smoke !

    But of course, evidence does not matter much to global warming alarmists. It is only fear that they want to increase.

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    pat

    followup to comment #10 Nick Cater/Greenpeace/Reputex:

    20 Jul 2018: RepuTex: UPDATE: The impact of a 26-45% NEG target on electricity prices to 2030
    Modelling indicates that increased ambition under the National Energy Guarantee (NEG) will place downward pressure on wholesale electricity prices in the National Electricity Market (NEM) through to 2030.
    Under the current design of the NEG (26 per cent scenario), we view electricity prices falling to 2020 as more than 6 GW of renewable energy investment enters the NEM under the LRET. Increased competition will see average prices become less influenced by high priced gas, falling toward $60 MWh in 2020…

    In contrast, a 45% emissions guarantee would imply a constraint on coal-fired emissions, while providing a signal for additional investment in clean energy. Similar to the price decline under the 26 per cent scenario prior to 2020, the competitive pressure from higher solar and wind energy is modelled to push wholesale prices lower. As a result wholesale electricity prices are projected to oscillate around $60 per MWh through to 2030, rather than rise above $80 per MWh as seen under the low investment scenario under a 26% NEG…
    DOWNLOAD
    https://www.reputex.com/research-insights/update-the-impact-of-a-26-45-neg-on-electricity-prices-to-2030/

    LINKS TO 25-PAGE PDF: MARKET STUDY/JULY 2018: THE IMPACT OF THE NEG ON EMISSIONS AND ELECTRICITY PRICES BY 2030: MODELLING FOR GREENPEACE AUSTRALIA PACIFIC
    RESEARCH LEADS: Hugh Grossman Executive Director; Bret Harper Associate Director, Research

    16 Nov 2018: Greenpeace: Victorian Coalition energy policies to drive highest power prices and pollution levels of major parties: RepuTex analysis
    Labor forecast to deliver lowest power prices, Greens to deliver lowest carbon emissions
    The report, commissioned by Greenpeace Australia Pacific, modelled the impact of the energy policies of the ALP, the Coalition and the Greens to 2025 and found that the Coalition’s energy plans will result in both the highest wholesale power prices and emissions of the three major parties, with the ALP performing best on prices and the Greens on emissions reductions.
    “This report provides further confirmation that an electricity system driven by coal is the worst of all worlds, driving up power prices and carbon pollution,” Greenpeace Australia Pacific Head of Research and Investigations, Dr Nikola Casule, said.
    “Renewable energy technologies are already driving down soaring power prices and drastically reducing carbon pollution. We need more renewable energy to accelerate this trend for the benefit of all Victorians and the environment.”…

    “The Reputex analysis clearly demonstrates that a vote for the Coalition is a vote not only for more carbon pollution, but also for higher costs when compared to the other major parties,” Dr Casule said…
    DOWNLOAD
    https://www.greenpeace.org.au/news/victorian-coalition-energy-policies-drive-highest-power-prices-pollution-levels-major-parties-reputex-analysis/

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      pat

      shut down ABC:

      21 Dec 2018: ABC: Renewables set to drive down power prices, new AEMC analysis shows
      By Nick Harmsen
      A flood of new renewable energy projects is likely to drive down household electricity bills, according to new analysis by government policy adviser the Australian Energy Market Commission (AEMC).
      On a national basis, household bills are set to fall by 2.1 per cent — but price falls in the eastern states and South Australia are offset by increases in Western Australia, the Northern Territory and the ACT…

      In its annual snapshot of household bill predictions called Price Trends, the AEMC said bill reductions were primarily driven by the reduction of wholesale costs for power generated in south-east Queensland, Victoria, SA and Tasmania.
      “The reduction is driven by the estimated entry of 9,732 megawatts of accredited, committed or expected new generation and battery storage,” the report found.
      The vast majority of the new generation is from intermittent renewable sources like wind and solar (8,961 MW)…
      Just over 200 MW of battery storage is also planned to be added to the grid.

      The AEMC found the reduction in wholesale power prices would more than offset smaller increases in the cost of maintaining power poles and wires, and green schemes like the Federal Government’s Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme (SRES).
      South Australia currently has the highest power prices in the nation, and is the state set to benefit most from new generation…

      While the AEMC report finds significant development of new wind and solar photovoltaic generation is expected to put downward pressure on wholesale electricity prices in the short-term, the longer-term price benefits of the Federal Government’s Renewable Energy Target are less clear…

      Faster decisions needed on infrastructure
      In a separate report, the Australian Energy Market Commission has recommended a series of changes to the way new transmission lines and interconnectors are built…
      https://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-12-21/power-prices-to-drop-with-more-renewables-report-finds/10638102

      other stories on the above page:

      Related Story: Renewable energy ‘drives down power prices by more than cost of subsidies’
      LINKS RIGHT COLUMN:
      Renewables the solution to rising power prices: Energy Australia
      Irrigators switch to on-farm solar to reduce power costs
      Verrender: Coal-fired generators have no future in Australia
      Industry groups demand bipartisan energy policy
      Solar batteries ‘exploding’ in popularity with uptake tipped to triple: audit

      21 Dec 2018: AEMC: Residential electricity price trends 2018
      Overview:
      On 21 December 2018 the Australian Energy Market Commission published its annual Residential Electricity Price Trends report. This is the ninth residential electricity price trends report prepared by the AEMC at the request of the Council of Australian Governments’ (COAG) Energy Council. The report identifies changes in the energy supply chain cost components that are driving residential electricity prices and bills for each Australian state and territory, and nationally, from 2017-18 to 2020-21…

      On a national basis, representative residential electricity prices and bills are expected to decrease over the period from 2017-18 to 2020-21, primarily due to decreasing wholesale costs, driven by 9,732 MW of new generation and battery storage entering the national electricity market.
      The downward pressure this new generation creates on wholesale prices more than offsets expected increases in coal and gas prices over the period…
      The decrease in wholesale costs more than offsets slight increases in network costs and increasing environmental policy costs primarily due to the Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme (SRES).
      The ACT, Western Australia and Northern Territory are exceptions to this national trend, with electricity prices and bills expected to increase slightly over the period…

      ***See the Price Trends microsite (LINK)
      For further information contact ETC
      https://www.aemc.gov.au/market-reviews-advice/residential-electricity-price-trends-2018

      ***from the microsite link:

      About us and the electricity price trends report
      Now in its ninth year, the AEMC price trends report is provided at the request of the Council of Australian Governments Energy Council.
      It is a core document used to inform a range of stakeholders including jurisdictional governments, the Australian Energy Market Operator the International Energy Agency and the Reserve Bank of Australia…
      This year’s report has changed the method used to calculate wholesale electricity purchase costs. A detailed explanation of the pricing methodology is set out in the 2018 Residential Electricity Price Trends Methodology Report (LINK to 71 PAGE PDF).
      The AEMC
      The AEMC is the rule maker for electricity and gas markets, and is a key advisor to the COAG Energy Council and its Energy Security Board.
      The Australian Energy Market Commission (AEMC) is the expert energy policy adviser to Australian governments.
      ***We make and revise the energy rules.
      “None of our decisions are taken lightly.The security, reliability and cost of energy underpins our quality of life.”

      why would this person make & revise our energy rules? read all:

      ***Wikipedia: John Pierce (AEMC Chairman and Commissioner appointed 2010)
      John Eric Pierce AO is a senior Australian public servant and policymaker. He is currently Chairman of the Australian Energy Market Commission…READ ALL
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Pierce_(public_servant)

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    Serp

    Tony Thomas has a good piece in Quadrant Online which demonstrates exactly what the disinterested inquirer is up against in dealing with the CAGW advocates.

    It is the most highly commented Quadrant article in recent memory.

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    pat

    reminder that Australia doesn’t have the ***neighbouring country options Germany has…and yet Germany is heading for strife:

    22 Feb: Bloomberg: Merkel’s Government Looks Abroad to Keep Germany’s Lights On
    By Brian Parkin and William Wilkes
    Minister says officials plan talks with neighboring nations
    Germany is shutting plants that generate half its electricity
    Germany will rely heavily on neighboring nations in Europe to avert blackouts as it weans itself off coal over the next two decades, a senior government official said…

    Thomas Bareiss, a deputy economy and energy minister, acknowledged that retiring all those plants poses a challenge that may leave Germany reliant on imported electricity.
    “It means thinking ahead and acting in concert in an already active cross-border market,” Bareiss said in an interview in Essen…

    The remarks indicate the scale of the challenge Chancellor Angela Merkel’s government has embraced in vowing to close all its 120-some coal plants by 2038, including “front-loading” many of the closures early in the next decade…

    ***Germany has borders with nine nations, the most of any state in the European Union…

    “What’s sure, is Germany can’t wholly rely on its partners in the future,” said Stefan Kapferer, the managing director of the BDEW utilities federation, in a note to Bloomberg. “They’re cutting coal as well.”…
    Coal power capacity in the EU-28 will fall to about 105 gigawatts from 150 gigawatts between 2016 and 2025, the BDEW industry group estimates. That will require shoring up a gap in the reliable “baseload” power before Merkel’s coal exit panel proposed closures by 2022. German coal plants had a combined capacity of 43 gigawatts last year.
    “Power overcapacity we’re seeing now in Germany will melt away,” Kapferer said.
    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-02-22/merkel-s-government-looks-abroad-to-keep-germany-s-lights-on

    reminder:
    4 Mar: EnergyReporters: High-profile interconnector to boost renewables fails again
    By Energy Reporters
    The £1.1 billion, 422km Western Link Interconnector between Scotland, England and Wales is still offline for the fourth time since its completion a year ago…
    The 2,250-megawatt link would be down for at least two weeks, the authorities said.
    Operator Western Link said “protection systems tripped. The link is out of operation while investigations continue”…
    The link has 4km of high voltage direct current cable, an underwater cable around 385km long and 33km of buried high-voltage, direct-current cable through the Wirral peninsula in Merseyside…
    The link is key to the Scottish government’s green energy strategy, sending electricity south and enabling imports when renewable generation in Scotland is sluggish.
    Western Link now faces calls for a public inquiry into the interconnector…

    7 Mar: EnergyVoice: Highland pumped hydro ‘could fill’ offshore wind gap, claim developers
    by David McPhee
    The developers of a Highland pumped storage project claim their technology is tailor-made to fill the supply gap left by offshore wind.
    ILI Group’s chief executive, Mark Wilson, was responding the UK Government’s new sector deal pledge that 30% of all UK energy sources will be renewable by 2030.
    The developers of the 450 megawatt (MW) Red John project in Inverness, last night described the need to meet the potential energy gap as “urgent”…

    But last year concerns were raised about the underground hydro plant, planned near Loch Ness.
    Complaints were lodged claiming the project could have a potential impact on the local environment with so many people travelling back and forth to the site.
    ILI claim the development could yield over £2 billion in investment, while filling the energy gap.
    Former UK Energy minister Brian Wilson added: “One way or another, there has to be back-up to the intermittency of renewable generation and this creates a huge opportunity for UK industry.
    “In Scotland, pumped storage hydro – which provides 95% of storage around the world – is the obvious answer instead of relying on imports via interconnectors.”…
    https://www.energyvoice.com/otherenergy/194339/highland-pumped-hydro-could-fill-offshore-wind-gap-claim-developers/

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    pat

    sincerely…R.I.P.

    11 Mar: ClimateChangeNews: Environment community mourns victims of Ethiopian Airlines crash
    UN staff and delegates to the UN Environment Assembly, which opened in Nairobi on Monday, were among 157 to die on the way from Addis Ababa
    By Karl Mathiesen
    At least 22 UN staff died in an Ethiopian Airlines plane crash on Sunday, along with many delegates travelling to a major environment summit, according to officials…

    “Many of those that lost their lives were en route to provide support and participate in the UN Environment Assembly. We lost UN staff, youth delegates travelling to the assembly, seasoned scientists, members of academia and other partners,” said (acting head of UN Environment Joyce) Msuya…READ ON
    https://www.climatechangenews.com/2019/03/11/environment-community-mourns-victims-ethiopian-airlines-plane-crash/

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    Richard Ilfeld

    Mr. Warren Buffet, investor, cam up with a comment today that also applies to Australia & energy.
    He aid, in essence, that he wouldn’t invest in states with large unfunded pension liabilities, because if
    you invest in a business you’ll likely be in a place for a long time, and ‘politicians will eventually have to get the money somewhere’.
    This states will never know what industries they missed out on, what jobs didn’t locate to their jurisdictions, what future taxpayers didn’t move in and support their economies. They are too busy frying up the golden goose to notice.

    The world’s enterprises are the same way. Stable governments protecting private property, good infrastructure, lights that stay on,
    and citizens who still believe in working for a living are in relatively short supply. A relatively small number of firms can provide all the world’s needs, given the productivity enabled by the tools given to the modern worker….a 100 times more productive than his progentor of just a few generations ago. Artists who see a dystopian future of a few centers of privilege & luxury and an exploited and miserable countryside may be simply clear eyed observers.

    You’d think that a region that grows the food, or mines the minerals, or makes the goods would be prosperous…..but give the government too much power and too little common sense and they’ll be the last to feel the pain, by which time it will be too late.

    Venezuela has, for two decades, retained the form, but not the substance of its business community. The country side has been suffering for years, and only now have the lights gone out in the capital. The thing is, they still have plenty of assets, but have
    lost the ability to deploy them. SO now, instead of being a world player on the oil market, they are bartering their assets for a penny on the dollar for food and medicine.

    It doesn’t matter if the govt thinks it’s doing good or knows its doing evil; reducing productivity has the same result. Lose the capability to produce while holding assets, and you will be bartering in a fashion little better than begging.

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    Slithers

    Stop the world, I want to get off!
    I just watched an ABC presenter tell his audience about the second hottest day in Brisbane!
    It was 38.5 degrees, and it was March twelfth!
    They can only be making this false news up!
    CAGW is the barrow to push!
    Who the hell wants real news????
    After a lack-luster February with no extreme heat events, your ABC invents a new scaremongering BOGGY!
    March Is Hotter than expected!
    Meanwhile Europe suffers it’s harshest winter, Hundreds die of Hypothermia, Not reported. The planets Libido changes, not reported.
    THEY MUST BE GETTING UPSET THAT THE CLIMATE IS NOT FOLLOWING THEIR SCRIPT!

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    Lance

    Politicians created this mess. When will they pay the price for their ignorance, arrogance, and malfeasance?

    “You will never understand bureaucracies until you understand that for bureaucrats procedure is everything and outcomes are nothing.”
    — Thomas Sowell .

    It is high time to change the outcomes, at least for the bureaucrats and politicians.
    Making them unemployed would be a good start.

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    • #
      Dennis

      According to amateur psephologist and former Prime Minister John Howard support for the unofficial two party system has fallen from the traditional 80 per cent of voters, including swinging voters, down to 60 per cent.

      The 2010 Federal Election resulted in a hung parliament forcing Labor to form alliance partnerships to create a minority government to retain power.

      The 2019 Federal Election is a new opportunity to vote against the two party system, and to deny the next government control of the Senate.

      Obviously both sides have been monitoring the mood of the electorate and will try harder to deceive voters. Accordingly, hopefully, most voters will not support the supported by left political groups candidates masquerading as independents. I strongly suspect that the leftists plan to form an alliance government.

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    Robert Swan

    A few depressing thoughts on this:

     • Industry uses far more electricity than households. The impression you’d get from the media is that home aircon is huge. Well, it’s big by household standards, but not much next to an aluminium smelter (or even a hospital). We’re endlessly told “this turbine will power n houses”. Fact is it’ll never power a smelter. What do people plan to do for a living in our zero-emissions nirvana?

     • Coal-fired electricity is cheap because of industrial users balancing out the load so the generators can run at a more-or-less steady load.

     • Our faux market-based electricity price is driving industrial users away (or out of business).

    Does anyone see a quick path, or any path, to cheap electricity again?

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    Geoff Crook

    The more renewable we use, like our own solar systems, the more the prices will go up. Businesses want to make money, if we produce our own product it means less for the business, so how does the business continue to make the same money it used to? Let’s put the price up to cover the shortfall of those who longer require us. If a country has a population of 1000 people and the company charged them $1 a day, how much would the same company need to charge each person if the population was 100 to make the same profit? Now compare our population to other places… Metro-Manila has the same population as all of Australia! Now are we starting to see why we pay so much? These companies want to be taken as global players but the only way they can do it is at our expense.

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    DaveR

    Until Scott Morrison can clearly explain to all Australians that renewable energy (wind+solar, not hydro) costs over $100/kWh (fully costed) before any subsidies, the Liberal-Coalition will go nowhere.

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    James in Perth

    When did Western Australia secede? Will they be applying for admission to the United Nations?

    00