ENRON now spelled A-G-L

In the last few weeks we’ve been focusing on how the wind power fraud impacts on South Australian power prices – making them the highest in the world – although SA seems to be fighting for line honours with wind power mad Denmark.

STT readers are well aware of what happens when SA’s 1,223 MW of installed wind power capacity takes a well earned break for days at an end.

SA’s pro-wind power rag – The Advertiser – has finally caught on that wind power just might not be as “free” as the Clean Energy Council and their clients – the wind weasels – have been pretending.

And apparently, welfare groups like UnitingCommunities must have missed the SA Labor Government’s offer to teach the growing number of people who can no longer foot their power bills the benefits of candles and how to cook like Masterchefs on a wood stove.

depression cooking on iron stove

SA’s latest Masterchef contender in training at home.


Power generators accused of using lack of wind as excuse to charge more for electricity
The Advertiser
Miles Kemp
14 June 2013

WELFARE groups have accused electricity generators of using a wind failure as a smokescreen for a wholesale electricity price spike that will increase electricity bills.

The incident happened last week when the price increased from the average below $100 per MwH to $12,199 MwH.

An investigation by the Federal Government’s Australian Energy Market Operator has found a number of the reasons can be traced back to electricity generators.

Welfare agencies have renewed calls for electricity generators to be banned from deliberately taking their power offline to create a spike in wholesale prices on the spot market.

“It is of great concern for SA’s electricity supply that Osborne and Torrens Island Power Stations as well as Pelican Point and Port Augusta can all be operating at reduced or zero output, when the interconnector is also down,” Uniting Communities spokesman Mark Henley said.

“Consumers are asking who benefits and who loses when wholesale electricity costs go sky high, because we know that consumers are the losers.

“South Australian energy policymakers and the regulator need to be certain that market power is not being exercised in this state and that it is not possible for generator market power to be exercised.’’

AGL owns Torrens Island power station, as well as about 25 per cent of the state’s wind power.

The price blowout began last week when AGL’s wind generation capacity dropped to zero. Between Saturday June 1 and Monday June 3, all wind generation in SA dropped from 900 MW to zero because of weather conditions.

AEMO has told The Advertiser other generation units were also offline, causing the price spike.

“The reduced thermal generation capacity included plant at Osborne and Torrens Island,’’ an AEMO spokeswoman said.

“The Murraylink interconnector (which brings electricity from Victoria) was out of service due to a cable fault.’’

A spokeswoman for AGL said there had been planned maintenance at Torrens Island and then and an “incident” at the power station on 31 May, prior to the wind failure.

“A 200 MW generating unit at the gas-fired power station tripped following a switchboard fault. Two other 200 MW generating units subsequently tripped,’’ she said.

“A full investigation into the cause of the incident which resulted in the units losing generation capacity is currently being conducted.”

The Federal Government Australian Energy Market Commission has been criticised by welfare groups for not taking action against so-called “gaming” by electricity generators, despite accepting the circumstances exist for it happening because of the small number of generators in the SA market.

Household bills are partly based on the wholesale price retailers must pay generators to onsell their electricity to customers, meaning the $12,199 MwH spike will flow on to consumers.
The Advertiser

Dissembling”: Conceal one’s true motives, feelings, or beliefs; disguise or conceal (a feeling or intention).

STT puts the poser: which corporate wind weasel is “dissembling” in the piece above?

To help with your answers have a look at our friendly cheat sheets here, here and here.

Oh – and one more clue – STT thinks the operator in question has lifted its business strategy straight from the Enron “playbook”.

About stopthesethings

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


  1. Reg Frankel says:

    Another Green Lie

  2. Astral Weeks says:

    Did not Mike Rann’s South Australian ALP Government (LAP dancers for wind industry erections?) strategically change the rules on his second last day in office to reduce the appeal rights of neighbours to proposed wind factories? (and to nullify an appeal process that was before the courts?) And the SA EPA fiddle the rules? And the Federal government ignore senate recommendations for research? And the NH&MRC ignore their own recommendations for research? And no research sponsored by any government or industry anywhere in the world of affected individuals living too close to turbines. The list goes on and on…

    The ENRON-like scheming of industry clearly extends to the highest levels of government, as in the US. Bring on a Royal Commission- the stench from the wind industry is overpowering. And kill the RECs-they are the equivalent of suitcases of cash to satisfy the gratification of industry (a smidgeon of which they also use to bribe rural hosts and communities) and salve the conscience of Urban environmentalists. For zero reduction in real emissions!

    See you at the rally for transparency & justice on Tuesday.

    Cheers, Van


  1. […] Wind power has done nothing to reduce CO2 emissions in the electricity sector (see our post here). And has simply driven power prices through the roof. It’s the reason why South Australia – Australia’s wind power capital – suffers the highest retail power prices in the world (see our posts here and here). […]

  2. […] Wind power has provided Australian generators with the perfect “cover” for pricing tactics of the kind that helped Enron make a killing in the Californian power market during the late 1990s (see our post here.). […]

  3. […] The figures cited by McCardle from the Queensland Competition Authority are simply long-term averages and do not take into account the impact of PPAs when the wind is blowing or the insane spikes in the dispatch price when it stops.  For a recap see our posts here and here and here. […]

  4. […] These are voters who clearly don’t know about the 65MW back-up diesel generating plant at the Desal Plant or the fact that wind weasels run a fleet of OCGTs for no other purpose than cashing in when the wind takes a well earned rest 120 times a year – see our posts here and here. […]

  5. […] and/or fast start-up fossil fuel peaking power generation systems – which comes at an EXORBITANT COST.  The FACT of the latter makes wind power an environmental fraud, as […]

  6. […] and everything to do with “green tokenism” parading as a front for monstrous outfits like AGL to rort and game the power […]

  7. […] Taxpayers and power consumers are sick of propping up a system of power generation which was redundant before it began and which will only ever provide power at crazy, random intervals and at exorbitant cost. […]

  8. […] covered the impact of exorbitant peaking power costs on SA’s power prices here , here and here. These posts deal with the FACT that when wind-watts go missing 80-100 times every year, the […]

  9. […] is one other reason – and that’s generators, like AGL, with peaking power plants making out like Mexican bandits – every time the wind stops […]

  10. […] problem is no different in Australia – save that here – we have an energy pool infested with peaking-power-piranhas ready to fire up in a heartbeat and cash in when the wind stops blowing right across the Eastern […]

  11. […] readers are aware that AGL is a big wind generator in SA and also has a heap of peaking power plants that it fires into action to cash in when its […]

  12. […] it disappears for hours and sometimes days at a stretch – the dispatch price jumps to $2,000 per MW/h and often hits the capped price of $12,500 per […]

  13. […] if you ignore the peaking power costs that we all pay when the wind goes AWOL 80-100 times a year – instead of $40 MW/h, try $2,000-$12,500 MW/h). […]

  14. […] care less about wind power – except cashing in when it disappears for days at a stretch.  AGL helped set it up and it seems just about anyone can […]

  15. […] power consumers (which means all of us) are painfully aware of the escalation in their power bills.  And the mainstream media are finally waking up that it has nothing to do with a carbon tax, […]

  16. […] for wind power; and are even happier to be paying $2,000 per MW/h and over the Moon to be paying $12,500 per MW/h for peaking power when wind power goes AWOL 100 times a year – instead of the usual […]

  17. […] operators like AGL supply “peaking power” using gas turbines at Macarthur and Hallett, which are more or less 747 jet engines strapped to […]

  18. […] suggested is more than called for and can’t come soon enough – but don’t expect those profiting from it or their apologists to come quietly. There’s far too much money to made – this […]

  19. […] hoot about off-peak wholesale prices when their electricity bills are the highest in the World – SA’s are already – and the rest of the Country is fast catching […]

  20. […] events of 3-5 June 2013 were a few unlucky days for wind weasels – unless you’re talking about AGL who cashed in big time – here’s the total wind power output for 27 and 28 June.  For the best part of 24 hours […]

  21. […] about the increased use of gas – now being used faster and more inefficiently than ever in Open Cycle Gas Turbines – which are employed to keep the lights on when the wind does what it does 80-100 times a […]

  22. […] battle for Silverton is on – and AGL – champion dissemblers when it comes to managing community “outrage” are trying to win local hearts and minds, […]

  23. […] and others on the wind weasel’s payroll.  Although, funnily enough she didn’t go anywhere the economic fraud or power […]

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