A science presenter, writer, speaker & former TV host; author of The Skeptic's Handbook (over 200,000 copies distributed & available in 15 languages).


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ABC: Let’s pretend base load power doesn’t exist, call it a dinosaur. Who’s in denial?

The new phrase that must be neutered is “base load”. It’s like kryptonite for renewables!

Nick Kilvert at the ABC helpfully provides a no-hard-questions mouthpiece and tells us Base load power is the dinosaur in the energy debate.

To serve the Australian taxpayer he quotes a Professor Vassallo, Chair of Sustainable Energy Development (USyd), and CSIRO Energy Director Dr Glenn Platt. Just in case they weren’t green and biased enough he also interviewed Professor Blakers, director of the ANU Centre for Sustainable Energy Systems. Finally he turns to Dr Mark Diesendorf, who is apparently just some guy at UNSW with a team of modelers. (Kilvert doesn’t give us his title, but a two second search suggests he works at the “Centre for Energy and Environmental Markets“. Perhaps it was an oversight, or maybe Kilvert was feeling guilty that every single person he quoted has a career in sustainable energy). Glenn Platt — by the way, is not just “Energy Director” but is described at The Conversation as leading the Energy Transformed Flagship research centre at CSIRO. So that’s four green academics, no one from the coal industry, no skeptics, no other engineers, and no one involved in managing a grid.


Greens, the baseload deniers, want $2.2b for bandaid batteries to keep junk renewables alive

The Greens are now asking for another $2.2billion to pay for the battery bandaid to fix a problem they and the leeching renewables industry created.

Adam Bandt is out today with the big new plan, apparently confused about what “load” means:

We don’t have a baseload problem, we have a peak load problem,” Mr Bandt said.

No matter how you look at this, it’s not a “load” problem. It’s an issue of supply.

We can count on the Greens to pour confusion on any problem:

“We need flexible generation and energy storage to manage the transition, not more coal.”

Four mistakes in one sentence. We have flexible generation – more than enough to cope with the current load curve. What we need is affordable electricity, which we used to have, and which coal supplies. What we don’t  need is energy storage to manage an irrelevant transition that we never had to have in the first place. Let me say it again, electricity generators are for generating electricity, not for magical attempts to control the climate.

What Adam Bandt  was trying to say:

“We The freeloading renewables industry needs flexible generation and energy storage to [...]

Rooftop solar destroying baseload profitability and proud of it

What other heavily subsidized industry brags about its ability to provide a product for one quarter of the time it’s needed? Vale sunny-day-solar!

Pick a day, an hour, and what are the chances solar will be there for you? A lot less than one in four, because last Monday’s peak in South Australia was an all time record. Every day in the last year was worse.

And so much for cheap… the price when solar power peaked was still close to $50/MWh. Compare that to most of the years of the national electricity market operating when average prices were $30/Mwh.

The price dip at 6am (the black-line bottomless gully), has nothing to do with solar, but was caused by wind power. Far from being useful, essential, or productive, solar and wind power are playing havoc with a normal market, destroying the chance for cheap, reliable energy to find a place. As long as we force the market to accept this non-dispatchable  supply, we are actively punishing reliable power. What investor in reliable energy would look at this and head to South Australia?”


Giles Parkinson was excited at Reneweconomy: Rooftop solar provides 48% of South Australia power, pushing grid [...]