Ron “The Boss” Boswell lays it down and says “fair go”

STT says that if common sense was apple pie it’s clear that Senator Ron Boswell has had a double helping. Short in supply in this debate and, thanks to the infectious disease that is “greentard ideology”, rarely reported, here is the mighty Queenslander dishing out common sense with knobs on. Ron also lays it on with a side order of compassion for business and the ordinary bloke – you know the men that used to head off each morning to build something useful like a Holden motor car, say. Every time you’re told that a wind farm creates jobs, ladle out some of the facts and figures set out by the big man in this piece from The Australian today. STT says that it’s time this Government gave an Australian “fair go” to the poorest in the Country, as well as the businesses trying to hold their heads above water, let alone employ people, all being belted by power prices driven sky-high by wind power.


STT invites the Senator to spell out a little more of his recipe for a fair go at the National Rally, June 18, Parliament House, Canberra. We expect he will get a warmer than usual welcome.

Energy taxes are the nail in the coffin of local manufacturing
The Australian
Ron Boswell
8 May 2013

THE collapse of the European carbon price has laid bare the absurdity of the Gillard government’s energy-based taxes on production.

The Australian carbon tax, at $23 a tonne and rising, and the almost-as-expensive renewable energy tax are killing the competitiveness of our businesses.

The price of carbon in Europe has plummeted to the equivalent of just $4 a tonne. Forecasts are that our carbon price could be as low as $2.70 a tonne when and if Labor’s carbon-pricing mechanism links with Europe’s emissions trading scheme in July 2015.

Until then, Labor is forcing businesses and households to deal with a carbon price due to jump to $24.15 a tonne in July and $25.40 in July next year. It’s madness.

No wonder business leaders are calling to scrap the carbon tax. They should scrap the renewable energy targets too.

But Labor won’t because of a yawning budget black hole.

So Holden will cut 500 jobs in South Australia and Victoria to reduce costs while Labor adds an estimated $550 to the manufacturing cost of every new Holden: $350 with a carbon tax and $200 with renewable energy targets.

European car manufacturers gain an immediate advantage because of their far lower carbon price, not to mention the high Australian dollar. Why subsidise the Australian car industry on one hand and penalise it with energy taxes on the other?

Australia’s strong manufacturing sector was based on two great advantages: abundant food and mineral resources and cheap power from massive coal deposits.

By increasing the cost of power, Labor has thrown away one advantage and major Australian manufacturing operations are going out of business or overseas.

In the US, manufacturing is growing. Companies are bringing manufacturing home. Foreign companies are setting up manufacturing lines in the US. Why? Cheap electricity is one big reason.

General Electric is spending $US800 million ($784m) bringing back production of electrical appliances from China to Kentucky. Apple is spending $US100m on a US manufacturing line for Mac computers currently made in China. Other companies lured back to the US include Caterpillar, Whirlpool, Otis, Electrolux, Google, NCR and Zentech. Foreign companies plugging into the US’s cheap power include German chemicals giant BASF, which has already committed $US5.7 billion to North America since 2009.

US commentators are talking about an extra $US1.5 trillion increase in manufacturing production and 3.7 million manufacturing jobs by 2025. One of the main reasons for this resurgence is cheap electricity, generated by the shale gas now being tapped into by US power companies.

Contrast that with businesses here, cutting jobs to save costs: BlueScope Steel in Victoria, 170 jobs gone; Boral, 790 jobs gone; Penrice Soda in SA, 60 jobs gone; Pentair, a company that made steel pipes in western Sydney for 60 years, 160 jobs gone; and Amcor, 300 jobs gone. Goodman Fielder is shutting 15 factories, cutting 600 jobs, Caltex its Kurnell refinery, 330 jobs, and the Norsk Hydro aluminium smelter near Newcastle, 350 jobs.

Others are moving production overseas: Kerry Foods, 100 jobs gone; Kresta Blinds, 72 jobs; Cussons soaps, 75 jobs; Aerogard, 190 jobs; Harley-Davidson, 212 jobs; and Bosch, 380 jobs. Golden Circle has moved processing lines and jobs to New Zealand too.

Rosella has gone after almost 120 years in business. Windsor Farm at Cowra, the second last Australian-owned cannery, closed its doors in March, costing 70 local jobs. The Australian Food and Grocery Council says more than 300 businesses went overseas or out of business in a year.

Shell Australia will stop processing at its Geelong refinery. The government was warned. Two years ago, Shell and Caltex told Climate Change Minister Greg Combet oil refinery investment in Australia was threatened by the carbon tax. Shell reportedly said the carbon tax would “break the camel’s back”.

At Queensland Alumina in Gladstone, the carbon tax and RETs have cost 200 jobs already. The carbon tax is costing QAL $23m a year and rising, and RETs probably another $15m. The Australian Aluminium Council estimates the cost of the RET and carbon price in the 10-years period from 2013 to 2022 would be more than $2bn.

Costs driven primarily by the RET scheme and carbon tax have raised the delivered cost of energy to the typical industrial user by 40 per cent. The government is forcing electricity suppliers to move from our traditional, cheap sources of electricity to expensive, unreliable sources, such as wind and solar. The wind only blows strongly enough to operate wind turbines about 30 per cent of the time, and the power industry says the reliability factor of wind power, from a planning perspective, is a very low 8 per cent or less.

We can have a carbon price and renewable energy targets or viable manufacturing. We can’t have both.

Ron Boswell is the Nationals senator for Queensland.
The Australian

About stopthesethings

We are a group of citizens concerned about the rapid spread of industrial wind power generation installations across Australia.


  1. Wendy Bell says:

    Thanks, Stop These Things, for this amazing resource, and Happy First Anniversary for the 26th.

  2. Noel Dean. says:

    Thanks Senator for your fair go approach based on research and the facts. You should be the next treasurer.
    How come the present treasurer, shadow treasurer and all the public servants around them could not see this mess in the making?
    May be they are all smart alecks who can talk, but do not read, or read, but not understand, but then refuse to listen? Which is the same problem that we have with the wind farm developer and others involved in this government sponsored fraud.

  3. It would be very nice to see a campaign to put pressure on Cath King in Ballarat about this issue, she has has it too easy for too long on this.

  4. Old Ranga from Victoria says:

    Right on, Senator. All power to your mighty voice.

  5. Jackie Rovensky says:

    The fraud that is the funding of this industry from our taxes has to stop. There is an election coming up, and yes Politicians (not all) are implicit in this fraud by either their active or tacit support of it.
    This article shows just how supporting the underpinning reasons for this industries existence and the completely incompetent signing of GHG emission targets before researching the most effective, socially and financial acceptable way of achieving targets should be done, has caused the end of manufacturing in this country but demise of manufacturing is not the end, this industry-supported push to encroach in farming and dairy lands will see these pursuits either close down or become unreliable in their production ability and uneconomical.
    Jobs promised in the IWT industry are few compared to jobs and industries being lost. Yes have Wind but not at the expense of the environment, communities and the future viability of this nation.
    Leading up to and during the election campaigning we must keep the pressure on politicians to become aware of what is happening and to force them by our questioning and demanding of answers to come-out and let us know where they stand and for them to make promises not to turn their backs on the issues if/once they are elected.
    Carbon tax is only one issue the unrestrained funding of this industry has to stop, research and resulting regulations MUST occur. People and the environment need to come first, you cannot sacrifice people for the sake of then environment, and you cannot save either without due rational consideration of how to go about it.
    I’m all for a clean environment, but we have to be careful what we accept as ‘clean’. Handing over our GHG emission problems to another country so we can appear to be green and clean is not the answer, we share the earth’s air, so moving our polluting off-shore does nothing for the earth’s environment.
    Stop these things until we know what the best ways to achieve goals are.
    Stop these things until we know what the best way to achieve goals is.
    Stop these things until we can be sure people are safe.
    Stop these things until we know we are not damaging the environment.
    DO NOT stop fighting these things..

  6. How refreshing to hear honest words coming out of the mouth of a politician… rare. Keep up the great job, Senator Boswell!

  7. How is it that St. Ron, Madigan, Xeno et al state the bleeding obvious yet the majority of politicians don’t want to comment at all, or if they do so, in a fence sitting ambiguous way? I would suggest that is because of the hugely obscene amounts of money involved. We know the labor governments and unions have billions of dollars invested in Big wind, let alone the distinct possibilities of other “backhanders” that are being nefariously delivered. It is equally likely that coalition members and the public service have a great deal of money invested in the wind industry through their superanuation funds . It has come to awareness the ANZ bank are invested in the Macarthur Disaster. It has been brought to this reader’s attention the possibility that members of the Adelaide Crows have bought the Wattle Point wind farm. If this is the case one does not have to ponder for long at all the reason why. A government backed taxpayer funded gravy train. Money for jam.
    My comments are representative of my opinions only.

    • Mr. Hayles,
      If your post content is true (as a whole or even partially) THIS HAS GOT TO STOP! It’s bordering on being criminal, a big scam. Obviously done with good intentions, but totally miss-(project) managed, and vast amounts of money has been wasted.
      Every major project this current gov. has attempted has been a failure.


  1. […] The mandatory RET must go. As retiring Queensland Senator, Ron Boswell put it: “We can have a carbon price and renewable energy targets or viable manufacturing. We can’t have both” (see our post here). […]

  2. […] The mandatory RET must go. As retiring Queensland Senator, Ron Boswell put it: “We can have a carbon price and renewable energy targets or viable manufacturing. We can’t have both” (see our post here). […]

  3. […] As retiring Queensland Senator, Ron Boswell put it: “We can have a carbon price and renewable energy targets or viable manufacturing. We can’t have both” (see our post here). […]

  4. […] Queensland Senator Ron Boswell put it: “We can have renewable energy targets or viable manufacturing. We can’t have […]

  5. […] Ron pointed out a while back in this post, Australia can: “have a carbon price and renewable energy targets or viable manufacturing. We […]

  6. […] are killing demand from businesses that once used buckets of the stuff – like Ford.  If you send 75,000 manufacturing jobs out of Australia – it’s no surprise that we’re using less […]

  7. […] little while back we re-published this brilliant piece from The Australian, in which Ron points out just how many “real” jobs and businesses we […]

  8. […] were delighted to publish this piece reported in the Australian, in Ron points out just how many “real” jobs and businesses […]

  9. […] Ron “The Boss” Boswell said in the Australian yesterday: “We can have a carbon price and renewable energy targets or viable manufacturing. […]

  10. […] Ron “The Boss” Boswell lays it down and says “fair go” – STOP THESE THINGS. […]

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