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ScoMo spends $1 billion on another band-aid subsidy for failing grid

Just another renewables subsidy

Bandaid on electricity grid. The Prime Ministers office has announced $1 Billion boost for power reliability which translates as a billion dollars spent on emergency measures we wouldn’t need if we hadn’t spent billions recklessly and artificially on a transition we didn’t need to have.

Ten years ago Australia didn’t have to spend a single dollar, on any batteries,  pumped storage, or “grid stabilizers”. And it didn’t need extra interconnectors. For decades the FCAS was largely free, thanks to giant turbines from coal plants. If we wanted grid unreliability back then, we’d probably have had to pay for it.

The Liberal National Government will establish a $1 billion Grid Reliability Fund to support Government investment in new energy generation, storage and transmission infrastructure, including eligible projects shortlisted under the Underwriting New Generation Investments (UNGI) program.

This is a government fund to support governments “investing” in energy generation?

The new $1 billion fund will be administered by the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC), drawing on the energy and financial markets expertise that has seen the CEFC invest more than $7 billion in clean energy since its establishment in 2012. The Fund represents the first new capital provided to the CEFC since it began.

It’s tin tacks in terms of solving the problem. The Snowy 2.0 anti-generator will need 5 to $10 billion. Any new major interconnector chews up $1.5b.  South Australia spent $500m on batteries and bandaids, and it’s only 6% of our total NEM Grid. Pfft.

Warning: goal posts on the move

Look who’s aiming to keep electricity only twice as expensive as it was a few years ago before Australia added all the unreliable generators:

The Grid Reliability Fund is an important initiative in the Government’s A Fair Deal on Energy policy and will contribute to meeting our $70 per MWh price target and maintaining and increasing supply of reliable electricity.

Average price for twenty years was $30/MWh. No one is even aiming to get back there. When we close coal plants electricity prices rise. Is there any nation on Earth where that’s not true?

In a PR move the CEFC has been retasked

This is another billion tossed at green fairies, and given to a group that has spent $7b of taxpayer money wrecking our grid. There are better ways this could have been spent. It’s a fence-sitting move, feeding the crocodile. Axing the CEFC and setting up a new group would have been a red rag to the XR-mob. Perhaps ScoMo is afraid of being called a “climate denier”, so the PM has retasked them instead.

Eligible investments will include:

  • Energy storage projects including pumped hydro and batteries,
  • Transmission and distribution infrastructure, and
  • Grid stabilising technologies.

The CEFC may do less damage than it used to do, or maybe not. These band-aids are still subsidies to industries that are destroying grid stability, and will make more of them possible. Instead we should be figuring out a way to get the unreliable generators to pay for reliability-fixes.

The CEFC doesn’t look like they get much say in anything:

Jennifer Hewett, AFR, has a few details.

The new CEFC-administered “grid reliability fund” will centralise the government’s financial support for new generation and storage from sources such as batteries, pumped hydro and gas, as well as some of the investment needed to upgrade transmission networks. But the money is primarily designed to provide a form of a banking facility or guarantee designed to unlock additional private sector investment, mainly by underwriting new dispatchable generation projects.

This includes underwriting most of the 12 projects the government has already shortlisted for federal backing, although it is still negotiating the details of this with the individual companies selected. All involve pumped hydro or gas projects in Victoria, NSW, South Australia, Tasmania and Queensland with the one exception of the upgrade of a coal-fired power station in NSW.

The energy policy blueprint is here: https://www.energy.gov.au/energy-policy-blueprint-fair-deal-energy.

Malcolm Turnbull’s happy – so we know it’s a bad idea.

Art: Compilation of Hydrabad wiring by   McKay Savage from London, UK and band aid cartoon by Nina Garman from Pixabay

 

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Rating: 9.6/10 (79 votes cast)
ScoMo spends $1 billion on another band-aid subsidy for failing grid, 9.6 out of 10 based on 79 ratings

61 comments to ScoMo spends $1 billion on another band-aid subsidy for failing grid

  • #
    • #

      Indeed. What did we have before ‘renewables’? Unreliable power?

      90

    • #
      Geoff

      The last election was about a choice. Treblinka or the Russian Front. Certain extermination or a slow death by attrition. ScoMo is a populist. Not a leader. The LNP remains visionless. The ALP would terminate everything, no recovery possible.

      Our Trump has not yet appeared.

      We are now at the world’s highest bracket of water, gas, petrol, diesel, electricity, regulations etc. The cause, too many public servants, too little vision and leadership, is obvious.

      There are other forces now at play.

      Low Sun spot activity will bottom out at the end of 2020. It will begin the rain again in the spring of 2021. Unfortunatley, a large environmental flow was authorized via the Dept of Environment last April which emptied most dams on the westernside of the Great Divide (Lachlan, Darling, Murrumbidgee upper catchments). This was done by the LNP to placate the green voters after an ABC program on the Darlin annabranch fish kill. The LNP released the water in order to get re-elected. About 800 towns are going to run out of water if there is no rain by April. Dubbo has only a few weeks left. Milk trucks will need mobilization and organising now. About 1,700 may be required.

      Our large aluminium smelters will announce closure unless some sense is found in our political class and AEMO. No load, no 500MW gennies at our major coal fired power plants, no Grid synch signal, no Grid, no electricity, no Australia.

      Energy Australia is assessing Yallourn’s viability. If Yallourn closes it is the end of an economic Grid in Victoria. All large industrial users will close. Many large office buildings will become unviable.

      The price of methane will force many east coast industries to shut. Its now at A$12/GJ moving to A$20.

      The RET (carbon tax) is now hurting our economy. Its now at A$16-19/MWhr.

      The price of temporary water now over $1,000/ML is threatening the huge nut and olive industry around Mildura.

      Corruption in our governments affect business daily. Lawyers now run many technical systems, not engineers. They simply line their own pockets at the expense of the community.

      All this stuff is happening now. We don’t have to wait long to see something major break.

      ScoMo’s Billion dollar gift for more crookery is amazing in its stupidity. He has alienated his base in one move. What were his advisors telling him?

      What next? COP in Sydney?

      360

      • #
        Kalm Keith

        Great comment Geoff.

        Blunt but true.

        Our nation has been gutted and neutered by politicians of all partis.

        The Fix.

        Step one ; close the ABC, SBS, BOM with none of those dodgy severance payouts.

        Step two ; decimate Australia’s stacked Public Service, including universities, as per Roman custom.

        Keep 10% of the staff. Send all those unemployed to the bush to slash undergrowth to prevent bushfires.

        Step seven : get out of the United Bloody Nations.

        Have elected politicians sign the new Honesty in Service Policy documents. Any infringements to be dealt with by transportation to Tasmania where the noise of complaints will not be heard above the thump of Bob’s new windmills.

        It’s urgent.

        KK

        170

      • #

        Don’t worry, Green jobs will save us all. See how many are already taking over traditional jobs. Oh, wait…

        110

      • #
        Robert Swan

        Yes, the public sector is now in the business of betraying the public.

        A government of some sort will always emerge in order to enforce private property rights. From there it grows and grows and grows. You start with the local sheriff and judge reining in the excesses of claim jumpers or cattle rustlers or whatever. Take the magic carpet ride to now and they’re deciding how much sugar is allowed in our drinks, etc., and, worse, helping themselves, through frivolous taxes, to the very property they’re meant to be protecting.

        It’s not a new question: “Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?” (who will guard the guardians). Is there an alternative to guillotines (which, oddly enough, might start with gilets jaunes)?

        70

      • #
        el gordo

        ‘Low Sun spot activity will bottom out at the end of 2020. It will begin the rain again in the spring of 2021.’

        There is talk around the traps that the rains will come with a strong La Nina at the end of 2020.

        30

        • #
          yarpos

          I hope for the sake of the folks in NSW and QLD that the traps are correct. You would never gues it around here , the council is mowing grass ahead of the fore season which is a nice change they started last year. On the farm over the road the mowing, gathering and wrapping machines are getting ready to start wrapping silage rounds. Its been a good growing season this Spring.

          30

  • #

    I’m just waiting for a GeeUpper to pop in and invite us to jump from Coalition frypan into Labor fire. You know how that lot like “solutions”.

    Seriously, life is easier as a conspiracy theorist. It’s easier than hoping that this endless white elephant breeding program isn’t pure globster agenda with giant skim-offs for sweetening. And what we lose on the ScoMo swings we lose double on the Albo roundabout.

    So what to call us now…Carpetbaggia?

    120

  • #

    Make no mistake, this ONE Billion dollars will go a long long way. (/sarc Tony puhleeeese!)

    Macarthur wind, the largest operational wind plant in Australia has a Nameplate of 420MW, and it cost $1.2 Billion all on its own. The Capacity Factor over the last two years has been 26%, and 22%.

    There have been three days since last Monday, so three of ten days when it has only generated power for four to five hours on each of those days, to a maximum of around 30MW, and it has been at zero output for the last 44 hours, inexplicably, as I can find no reason for it.

    $1.2 Billion for a lemon, a white elephant. Quick! Throw more money at it.

    Okay then. The up front cost of a renewable plant is (let’s ballpark here) $1 Billion. Usually stumped up by foreign owners, and as I mentioned in an earlier Comment, it would surprise you to know how many renewable power plants are foreign owned.

    Okay. That One Billion is the up front cost.

    As is the case with nearly EVERY ONE of these renewable power plants, at least half of that cost is given as a grant, not a loan, an outright gift, and that has been happening since I started all this that I do, back almost 12 years now. The first time I saw it, I had to hold my heart and take a leap of faith to mention it in a Post or a Comment, but for each new one I checked, the same, half from the Federal Government and the State Government, the biggest part of that from the Feds. It has come from all sorts of entities with differing names, now this one, the CEFC.

    So now, see the end result. They (the owners) only have to repay HALF A BILLION, and that comes from what they charge for the electricity, well, it has to come from there, as do maintenance, wages, etc etc etc, all from the calculated Unit cost of electricity. Also, underwritten into the original contract is that the generated electricity will receive a certain sum, a guarantee for every MWH of power generated. Also in that contract is that the generated power WILL always get called into use, so no matter what they generate, and when they generate it and for how long they generate it, the power will ALWAYS get priority.

    So, they can bid whatever they like for their power, safe in the knowledge that they will get the average cost no matter what, and in 99 cases out of a hundred, that will always be more than what they bid.

    Now can you see how they claim that their power is always cheapest. They only have to repay half the cost of the plant, and game the system by bidding low.

    Then comes the cream, (shh! don’t tell anyone) the certificates and carbon credits etc. Those never get mentioned in any cost structures at all, so that’s just on top. But hey! there’s that no free lunch meme, remember that one, because you, as the consumer of the electricity still pay for those out of your retail Unit cost for electricity.

    But, hey, there are ….. NO subsidies when it comes to renewable power. They all have other, less, you know, offensive wording.

    Nudge nudge wink wink say no more squire, say no more.

    Tony.

    550

    • #

      Hmm! I wonder if this had anything to do with it.

      The Malaysian (50%) owners sold their 50% just late today to AMP. They (Malakoff) purchased it in 2013 for $659 Million, and today got $880 Million. AMP will split that 50% among two of its wealth management funds.

      The other 50% is owned by Morrison (NZ) and they paid $532 Million.

      So, effectively Macarthur wind is now worth $1.412 Billion.

      Those two owners split the takings from the unit cost per MWH for the plant, and the plant’s operators, AGL, get everything from the certificates credits etc.

      Note the altruism in all of this, you know, of bringing a cheap reliable power to Australian consumers.

      The plant originally cost $1 Billion, half of that from the fed and State Govt, so just $500 Million, half of that each for the two original owners, AGL and Meridian, as equal partners.

      Meridian sold their half to the Malaysian Company Malakoff for that $659 Million, and AGL sold their 50% to Morrison (NZ) for $532 Million. Now Malakoff have sold to AMP for $880 Million.

      Both owners have a guarantee to sell all the generated power to AGL who will then retail it, and AGL get all the certificates and credits.

      Altruism. Reliable energy. Cheap energy. Grid stability.

      Naah! It’s just the usual ….. the money.

      Tony.

      500

      • #
        glen Michel

        Thanks for that Tony. Yep, it’s dosh – sloshing about associated entities for their turn at the trough. Snort grunt squeal.

        91

      • #
      • #

        I’m willing to bet that Macarthur was, umm, directed to stop generating power during the period this sale was going through.

        50 hours off line, and then at 6AM this morning, back it comes. Not just a slow build up due to the wind coming back after the passage of a High Pressure Weather System, but blink, almost immediately back up to all but 400MW, almost at its maximum, in little more than an hour.

        Doesn’t it warm your heart that they are so altruistic that they’ll keep delivering to the public no matter what. Best interests at heart and all that.

        Yeah! Not where money’s concerned eh!

        Tony.

        200

        • #

          No one will even bother to look, even if they knew what they were looking for in the first place, and you can rest assured, you’ll never see this anywhere.

          50 hours turned off, just nothing.

          Turned on at 6AM, and since then it has been running at an average of 294MW or at a CF of 70%, so it’s not like there was a lack of wind.

          It has generated 2650MWH of power since 6AM, and sold that into the Victorian grid for $330,000. Not bad for nine hours.

          It was just so darned obvious.

          Tony.

          80

  • #
    Don B

    Here is a graph of the price of electricity in Australia compared to the developed world. Notice that Denmark and Germany, which have more installed capacity of wind and solar than any other European nations, have higher electricity prices than any other European nations.

    http://icecap.us/index.php/go/joes-blog

    130

    • #
      Robert Swan

      I clicked on the link and saw screeds of text and a few tiny graphs. Occasional mentions of electricity prices, but, AFAICT, no mention of Australian electriciy prices, and no mention of Denmark at all. Perhaps the content changed overnight. Have you a better link?

      20

      • #
        Graeme#4

        Denmark is on the graph Robert, but hard to see given the graphic size. The same graph in full size has popped up here, but unfortunately I don’t have a precise date reference to it. However I suggest around Dec 2018, when the cost comparison to SA electricity prices were being discussed. FWIW, Denmark was 44.78 c/kWh and SA 47.13 kWh.

        10

        • #
          Robert Swan

          Ah, thanks Graeme#4. I was only searching for words in the text. Now that I’ve had a good squint in at the graphs, there was indeed a comparo of electricity prices. Don B’s original comment wasn’t really truth in advertising since there was a lot more than a graph at the link.

          Here is the link that gets straight to the meat of the matter.

          10

  • #
    Hanrahan

    A billion here, a billion there, pretty soon you are talking big money.

    140

    • #
      The Depraved and MOST Deplorable Vlad the Impaler

      Senator Evertt Dirksen (R – Ill) quipped that as President Johnson (not the Civil War era President) proposed the “Great Society”. Never get tired of hearing that one.

      Regards,

      Vlad

      50

  • #

    It says at the end that a lot of the money will go For gas fired generation and upgrading a coal fired plant. That is not so bad.

    50

    • #
      GD

      upgrading a coal-fired plant

      Not good enough. The government needs to build a new coal-fired power station X 3.

      130

      • #
        el gordo

        Morrison will wait for the states to request new coal fired power plants, which the Feds will underwrite, the government has a hands off approach.

        40

        • #
          Serp

          Is the PM being disingenuous or simply dishonest? The Victorian Labor government with its bottom drawer budget for demolition of the remaining Yallourn power stations is hardly likely to request a newie.

          The Cavanagh-Morrison overheard blue about Collinsville go slow tips the scales to the dishonest side of the balance –let’s not forget that ScoMo is Turnbull’s puppet and this CEFC ploy has an uncanny resemblance to the worst features of the NEG.

          30

          • #
            Serp

            Canavan not Cavanagh (sorry)

            10

          • #
            el gordo

            ‘Is the PM being disingenuous or simply dishonest?’

            Dunno, its hard to read the political mindset, but if he abandons the centre right then we’ll have to assume the pseudo Marxist consortium still holds sway in Canberra.

            On the other hand, methinks he will let the states sink or swim on coal. A progressive NSW and Queensland watching Vic and SA crash and burn.

            00

  • #
    Richard Ilfeld

    Cost of living is not an abstract concept. But it is often misleading to measure in “money”. Scientists who do comparisons across
    cultures and history try to reduce COL to something comparable across time and space, an it’s a tough deal. A billon dollars
    of government waste just doesn’t translate just doesn’t translate into what we should think about what is being done to our lives.
    This is especially true for wealthy societies that have a lot of accumulated wealth to consume. where the consumption isn’t obvious.

    A large part of the population has a car. There is a normal replacement cycle. It may be extended as consumers have a little less money.
    But this extension goes unseen for many many years, until one ends up in Cuba with 50′s shells still on the road running lawnmower motor, and a lot of rural chassis
    now being pulled around by draft animals.

    The middle class always suffers the most. It is a fair question to ask why the forces that snatch a middle class life for a large number of citizens from a
    world of adverse entropy, so often lose out to the political classes bleating the prescriptions of a dead economist or a live self-proclaimed climatologist.

    Why again are we blowing up successful entities and building unsuccessful ones?

    In most historic examples it is the case that when questions like this move to the forefront is when governments being depending on the secret police and internal
    security forces.

    The tendencies are already obvious in the failing democracies; from subtle erosion of the freedom of speech to overt calls to ‘jail climate deniers’.

    It is hard to find cases of social recovery. It is easy to find mass migrations to economies at different stages of growth, and, regrettably, mass destruction
    of populations.

    Is there a paradigm for reform?

    Companies that fail sometimes reform themselves, or, more often, fail out & permit their assets to be redeployed, people to be rehired, & progress to continue.

    Governments that fail?

    90

  • #
    GD

    What happened to the ScoMo who brought a lump of coal into parliament?

    It’s almost like why did we get rid of Turnbull.

    I am disgusted with the Libs. Good on Matt Canavan for standing up to Morrison.

    170

  • #
    GD

    I’ve written to the PM, not that it will do any good, but it could if everyone wrote to him.

    https://www.pm.gov.au/contact-your-pm

    90

  • #
    Zigmaster

    I’d be interested if someone could tell me the real cost of renewables. When people say that the cost of renewables has doubled from $30 to $70 that’s the cost to the consumer. But the cost should be adjusted to take into account the cost of subsidies and government expense that has been spent divided by the number of taxpayers. In trying to compare what has happened compared to the status quo one should add on those additional subsidies to the real cost.
    Otherwise if government subsidies and other payments are ignored one could argue that the cost of education has fallen because the consumer pays less than he did whilst taxpayers see more money allocated.
    In other words the real cost is not what the consumer pays but the additional opportunity cost represented by those subsidies and government payments ithat have been made because the government has chosen this renewable path instead of funding the grid with updating and maintaining its power generation system with coal. This additional cost could be expressed as a hidden electricity cost by dividing that additional cost by the number of taxpayers and adding that to the bill or it could be expressed as the number of extra hospitals or amounts of dams that could be built or the number of schools indicating the true opportunity costs.
    Has anyone ever attempted this type of analysis?

    90

    • #
      Robber

      Zig, In 2017 Chief Scientist Dr Alan Finkel reported the cost of wind generation as $92/MWhr without backup. He reported solar as $91 without backup and $172/MWhr with 12 hours backup.
      Take Ararat wind farm in Vic – $450 million, 75 towers, nameplate capacity 240 MW, average output 72 MW. Your contract with AEMO allows you to provide anywhere between zero and 240 MW into the grid. Other generators must vary their output to balance supply and demand. That means dispatchable power from coal, gas and hydro must always be available to meet 100% of demand for when the wind doesn’t blow.
      The Victorian wholesale price for 2018/19 averaged $110.81/MWhr (11 cents/kWhr), giving Ararat a gross annual income of $70 million. Assume that the towers will be scrapped after 20 years so you must write down your investment by $22.5 million each year. Allow 3% of capital cost each year for operating costs – labour, repairs etc – that’s $13.5 million. So the annual net income is $34 million for a 7.5% return on capital.
      Note that back in the “good old days” of 2015/16 when the Victorian wholesale price was just $46/MWhr (comparable with wholesale electricity prices in other countries) you would have made a loss of $7 million per year.
      However, under the RET “renewable energy target” legislation you are issued with certificates that retailers are obliged to buy for a price that has been about $80/MWhr paid for by electricity consumers – a boost to your annual income of $50 million. So your annual net income becomes $84 million for a return on investment of 18.7% – smart foreign investors, dumb governments.
      But that’s not the end of the story. When the wind doesn’t blow, dispatchable power sources must be available to meet demand. Currently those supplies include hydro, coal and gas. Therefore the costs of those backup supplies must be added to the costs reported by Dr Finkel, essentially doubling the cost by lowering average utilisation.
      And that’s what the government is now going to do via a $1 billion Grid Reliability Fund to support Government investment in new energy generation, storage and transmission infrastructure. So more investments all seeking a return on investment, yet that is going to lower prices? Annual Vic prices since 2015/16 tell the story: $46/MWhr, $67, $92, $110.
      When governments bankroll private investors, the rent seekers line up.

      260

    • #
      Graeme#4

      If you look up Hepburn wind farm, which is a public company, you will see the latest figures.
      From Tony’s comments 14 Nov 2018, for the 2017-2018 FY, these were:
      Nameplate: 4.1 MW
      Actual output: 1.2 MW
      Electricity Sales: $618,000
      Subsidies (LCGs) income: $625,000
      Operating Costs: $518,000
      Profit After Tax: $634,000
      Tax Credit: $235,000
      It’s worth re-visiting Tony’s conclusions.

      60

  • #
    Eddie

    Maybe ScoMo could ask Bob Geldorf to stage a fundraiser for the next broken renewables bailout. All the Luvees should be up for it.

    80

  • #
    Travis T. Jones

    PHON can sleep tight knowing my once coalition vote is safe with them.

    170

    • #
      Kalm Keith

      Is there any other option.

      With only two exceptions I’ve always voted independent but will put one nation up first as a protest if there is a candidate.

      Renewables continue to spread and milk us under all levels of government so my vote will go to the anti renewables parti.

      110

    • #
      Peter C

      Don’t get mad, get even.

      Scott Morrison is the new public enemy No 1.

      90

      • #
        Ms Smith

        “Scott Morrison is the new public enemy No 1.”
        I guess we can be thankful that his true colours (and the government) has become revealed soon after the election, and this last week has been self-evident. There are only a handful of politicians that I could trust. However, because THEY ARE SUPPOSED TO WORK FOR US THE PEOPLE ACCORDING TO THE CONSTITUTION, we should be able to “call them out” on their leftism. I am very grateful that there are a few conservative media people exposing and working for the people. Also, why is Craig Kelly banned from appearing on Q & A?

        00

  • #
    robert rosicka

    Just got a SMS from the power company , power will be out today from 8.30 – 5.00pm
    Apparently they have to gold plate the N=1 system ( did I get that right Fitz) .
    Time to dust the generators off .

    90

  • #
    Another Ian

    “Stupidity does not need help
    Posted on 8:12 am, October 31, 2019 by The Artist Formerly Known As Spartacus

    Stupidity does not need help. It has its own political party in the ALP.”

    http://catallaxyfiles.com/2019/10/31/stupidity-does-not-need-help/

    Now more inclusive

    30

  • #
    Serge Wright

    The LNP are playing a game of politics with RE, attempting to appease both sides by spending a bit each way. If you look at the situation from only a political viewpoint then you probably can’t blame SM because we all saw what happened to TA. My own thoughts are that SM is more worried about being undermined from within than by the media or the ALP, which is why we see these gestures to appease the climate crazies.

    The other important consideration here is the global community, where it is possible that trade sanctions will be imposed on developed coutries that are not meeting climate targets at some point down the track. Obviously this won’t happen under Trump’s watch, but the post Trump environment is a scary unknown if the UN and climate crazy states get their way. Countries such as China would love this outcome because they are excluded from such impacts being classed as developing and know that it would kill the west and hand them global dominance on a platter. I’m sure this is why SM called out China as a developed nation, because he knows a change of their status would help prevent this future scenario from unravelling. It’s also why he is sticking to a minimum CO2 target to avoid future trade retaliations which would cripple our economy.

    Right now the best outcome we can hope for is a Trump re-election to provide another 4 years of clean air and hope that in that time enough people in western democracies wake up to the political threat of Big Green Socialism and the CC scam from which it hides behind.

    160

    • #
      Serp

      Yes Serge Wright you’ve nailed it; I guess we’ve got to learn to live with the idiocy for another decade or so by which time renewables will be stone dead of its own inadequacy.

      00

  • #
    yarpos

    Just read an Age article about the “dawning of the battery age” because in response to 1.6GW ageing out at Lidell we are going to have Batteries!! yay!

    The writer seemed unsure of units and toggled variously between MW, MWh, powering 30,000 households and not really being clear if his units applied to each battery or the group of four being touted.

    But in any case we are saved and I guess the power to store in the Unicorn Mark 5 batteries will come from somehere I guess.

    41

    • #
      Serp

      Time was when newspapers, particularly The Age, were authoritative and took pride in it but nowadays they seem to be peopled solely by innumerate and illiterate well-meaning (read politically correct) dolts; I no longer read The Age and generally disregard stories reported to emanate from it; anyway, thanks for confirming my prejudice –I upthumbed your comment.

      30

      • #
        yarpos

        To further illustrate Serp’s point, the Age had quite an interesting article about the remnants of a mirror reef to the GBR off North West Australia. Wasnt a bad read , but as it was curated by Peter Hannam he couldnt resist inserting an alarmist mention of the GBR and how the worlds Oceans are turning “more acidic”. Pathetic.

        50

  • #
    Brian

    At time this blog would benefit from touch of logic. Renewables are certainly unreliable and variable, causing increased power costs and further expansion at this time would escalate the risk of total grid collapse. However the billion dollars injected into the fund represents a sensible mitigation for an unstable grid being designated for realistic storage and smoothing such as pumped hydro (definitely not batteries). Under the Constitution the only power the government has is to limit the use of the funds to such projects. The Federal government cannot build HELE or other generating facilities. That authority rests with the States and given their track records we are doomed.

    10

    • #
      Kalm Keith

      Just wondering who created the financial regulatory structure that is currently distorting the Electricity Generation by those state governments.

      Was it the states, the U.N. ?

      It’s a mess made deliberately so that “the chosen few” can skim for all they’re worth.

      20

      • #
        David-of-Cooyal-in-Oz

        G’day KK,
        I’ll try a brief memory test.

        The UN and IPCC invented the AGW scare;
        Kevin Rudd announced it as the greatest moral problem of our times:
        Labor went for a carbon tax;
        Turnbull signed us up for Paris, and ratified it on his way out;
        The AEMO was setup to unravel the mess after Vic and SA started to blow up coal fired power plants.

        Hope this helps, but it hasn’t been peer reviewed.
        Cheers
        Dave B

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        • #
          Kalm Keith

          Good overview David.

          The comment by Brian that let the federal government off the hook didn’t seem to fit the circumstances.

          Federal government has created the financial incentives to go for renewables rather than HELE coal.

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    Brian

    At times this blog would benefit from touch of logic. Renewables are certainly unreliable and variable, causing increased power costs and further expansion at this time would escalate the risk of total grid collapse. However the billion dollars injected into the fund represents a sensible mitigation for an unstable grid being designated for realistic storage and smoothing such as pumped hydro (definitely not batteries). Under the Constitution the only power the government has is to limit the use of the funds to such projects. The Federal government cannot build HELE or other generating facilities. That authority rests with the States and given their track records we are doomed.

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    Russ Wood

    That mess of wires at the top of the piece may well represent the present state of Australia’s electricity system – but in fact it’s from South Africa. The picture was used last year to show the incredible number of ILLEGAL (and unpaid) connections being made in an ‘informal settlement’.

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