Macfarlane cops Miskelly Mauling


Ian Macfarlane is now the Minister for Industry, which includes the Energy portfolio.

STT receives quite a lot of mail about Macca running way too close to wind weasel outlaws, Infigen (aka Babcock and Brown).

Some might call it an “unhealthy” relationship.  Tune in to Alan Jones this week to hear what AJ calls it.

We’ve called him a “policy pygmy” – which apparently upset him.  But, being fair-minded individuals, we’re prepared to “give the lad a go”, as they say.

But be warned – any misstep from here will be punished mercilessly by Australian power consumers – who all vote.

STT Champion, Paul Miskelly hit the STT headlines with his brilliant study into the economic and environmental lunacy that is wind power in this post: Where will you be when the lights go out for good?

We thought that Paul couldn’t possibly top that thoroughly researched piece of work but, as they say, you can’t keep a good man down.

Here’s Paul’s electricity epistle to Macfarlane:

Dear Mr MacFarlane,
Minister for Industry.

This letter is written out of extreme frustration.  Please find attached:

1. A properly peer-reviewed, scholarly paper, published in an international Journal (Energy & Environment), entitled: “Wind Farms in Eastern Australia – Recent Lessons”, written by myself.

2. A copy of a letter published by the Acoustics Australia Journal that provides a succinct summary of the findings of the above paper.

The analysis described in the paper demonstrates conclusively that, as a result of the large-scale swings in their output, resulting from the inherent intermittency of the wind, wind farms, whether singly, or in unison across the entire eastern Australian grid, are completely useless in any attempt to obtain CO2 emissions reductions in any attempt to use them to offset the output of coal-fired or other controllable fossil-fuelled power station.

The analysis is NOT some sort of computer model.  In the paper, I analyse actual operational data from operating wind farms connected to the eastern Australian grid during the entire calendar year 2010.

Just to confirm the paper’s provenance, you might care to check that it is available for downloading at the Journal’s website, at the link here.

This analysis of mine is, if you like, the Due Diligence analysis that ought to have been conducted by your government’s departments prior to the introduction of the MRET Scheme back in the period of the Howard government.

My analysis shows that wind farms are NOT fit-for-purpose.  Indeed, increasing the number of wind farms merely increases the requirement for the use of controllable fossil-fuelled power-stations for the necessary balancing of their output to such an extent that the resulting inefficient operation of that fossil-fuelled plant results in greater CO2 emissions that any saving resulting from the wind farm output.

This need for balancing, which I describe in detail in the paper, results from the fact that the grid operates on a second-by-second basis.

One may not analyse grid operation using outputs averaged over much longer periods, as the wind industry, and its academic supporters, are so fond of doing.

Read the statement above again: Wind Farms are not fit-for-purpose.

Not only are they not fit-for-purpose, their inherent intermittency poses a constant danger to grid operational security and reliability.

Read that statement again: that statement means that should more wind farms continue to be built, then we face the very real possibility that the eastern Australian grid will be subject to frequent, unpredictable, blackouts.

It is already the case that operating the South Australian part of the electricity grid has become challenging as a result of the 20%-plus of the total installed capacity there that is the wind farm component.  I don’t ask you to take my word for it, ask the AEMO.

Need I add that one cannot run a complex society without a stable, secure, reliable electricity supply?

Perhaps you need a reminder that one of the responsibilities of the Federal Industry and Energy portfolio is the provision of a secure, stable, reliable electricity supply to the nation, and at the most reasonable cost achievable.

The task of the Minister for Industry, Energy and Science is not, I would have thought, the provision of highly lucrative subsidies to organisations whose very activities knowingly threaten the operational security and reliability of the eastern Australian electricity grid.  Yet that is precisely what the MRET Scheme is bringing about in encouraging wind farm electricity generation.  Perhaps you had better read this paragraph again as well.

I am not a political lobbyist, or some kind of ratbag.  I am a professional electrical engineer who stands to benefit not one jot from what I am telling you.  Be warned: continue with this mad wind nonsense and the serious consequences described above may well occur.

As a result, you are, as the responsible Minister, required to make a number of decisions.

The first decision that you are required to make is that you abolish the MRET scheme, effective immediately.

The second decision that you are required to make is that you institute a Royal Commission-style Inquiry into the operation of the Eastern Australian electricity market. There is evidence that the intermittency of wind farms, an intermittency that attracts no penalty, causes, at those times where wind output plummets, huge and sustained increases in the spot price of electricity.  These huge prices are paid to all generators operating at the time, including fossil-fuelled generators.

We find, therefore, that companies such as AGL, have spread their investment assets across the entire spectrum of generation.  As a result, they gain the RET payments from the wind farms, but also pick up the high spot prices paid to other forms of generation when the wind output fails.

It’s a very nice little earner for the likes of AGL, thank-you very much.  And it’s your MRET Scheme that has provided these companies with this highly lucrative income stream, and as I indicate above, all to no useful purpose whatsoever.

The loser is the electricity consumer who has to foot the exorbitant bill for the excessive and totally unfair payments made to both the wind farm operators, and to the operators of conventional plant providing the backup generation.

The third decision that you are required to make is in relation to the wind turbine noise issue.

You shall not, in the first instance, go and have a chat to your mates in the wind industry over the likely health issues as you have indicated in a recent press release.

No, if you want to regain any credibility with the electorate, then, the first instance, you shall very publicly go and visit affected residents in districts in the vicinity of wind farms.

Go and visit those regions in the vicinity of wind farms such as: Waterloo in South Australia, Waubra, Marcathur, Cape Bridgewater in Victoria, Taylor’s Creek road near Tarago, and Cullerin, both in NSW, to name a few.

In short, you shall go and visit all of those residents whose lives have been shattered by the MRET scheme, a scheme originally introduced by the Howard government, a government in which, I seem to recall, you were the Minister for Energy at the time.

Furthermore, you shall cease pretending that somehow all these residents are suffering some sort of delusion in their dealing with the wind farm noise issue.  You shall go and find out the extent of the utter disaster that your hopelessly flawed, hopelessly futile encouragement of this totally useless attempt at CO2 abatement, has caused.

Oh, and in case you think I am working for some pressure group lobbying for some sort of benefit, let me add that the paper that you see before you was written in my own time, was funded by nobody, either in cash or in kind, at considerable inconvenience both in time and lost financial opportunity in pursuing other potentially more profitable activities, to both myself and my family.

As I said earlier, I stand to benefit nothing from this letter.  All I am doing is addressing my professional responsibilities as a professional electrical engineer to “do no harm” in addressing those professional responsibilities.

I am prepared to state that on Affidavit if necessary.

At the risk of offending you, Mr MacFarlane, I am stating here that you shall wake up to yourself, or face the consequences.

One such consequence is ridicule: the wind industry is one of those last shelters for the snake-oil merchant, the used-car salesman, of the very worst kind.  And the electorate is aware that you have encouraged them.

You might like to think that I am being impolite, rude, and indeed impertinent, Mr MacFarlane.

Sadly, the fact is that your government’s behaviour in the Howard years, in introducing the MRET Scheme in its original form, is shown by any analysis of wind farm operational performance, to have been a totally irresponsible act.

Furthermore, people across this country are fed up with your inaction to redress what has turned out to be an extraordinarily cruel and totally futile, piece of legislation, legislation that you supported in the Howard era.

And those remarks apply to any member of the Coalition that continues to support this wind energy nonsense.

Fix it, and soon.

Now, I suggest that you carefully, methodically, go and read and analyse my paper.  Check the description of how I conducted the analysis.

Run it by persons with the necessary electrical engineering knowledge and expertise if necessary.  Go to the indicated AEMO websites.

Download the relevant data.  Conduct the analysis as described.  It has been carefully checked by others.  I defy you to find fault with it.

Note that, unlike the wind industry, I am completely open with my methodology, my data sources.  There is a correct way to write a scientific paper: one is required to show all working to the extent that the interested reader may duplicate the work described.

And one must publish in a properly peer-reviewed form.

Get over your chagrin at being offended by this letter.  Get on with addressing your responsibilities.

If you think that being seen to support wind farms is somehow providing the necessary sop to “being seen to be doing something to support the environment”, then get over it.

The message is out: wind farms are both useless and dangerous.

I look forward to your early reply.

Paul Miskelly BE MEngSc (both degrees in Electrical Engineering)

STT says: “hats off, Paul!!”

We’ve been banging on about this for some time.

Wind power is premised on a technology which was redundant as soon as James Watt started flogging his curious whirling steam kettle in 1776. Born in the 18th Century – by the end of the 19th Century – steam power had put wind and water mills out of business and banished the role of sailing ships to playing parts in pirate films.

steam engine

Watt dragged us out of poverty and darkness.

As Paul points out – in no uncertain terms – if we do not bring this great wind power fraud to an end NOW we will ALL be sitting freezing in the dark.

But what would Paul know?  He’s just an electrical engineer with over 30 years experience in the sparks business and someone who is acutely aware of the difficulties associated with managing the most geographically diverse electrical grid on the planet.

Oh, and Ian, STT suggests you pay careful attention to what’s said above.

Paul Miskelly is not setting out to line his pockets with endless streams of RECs filched from unwitting power consumers – like your buddies at Infigen.

Paul’s doing exactly what competent, ethical professional Engineers are expected to do – he’s pointing out a REAL problem with an obvious solution: scrap the RET now and prevent any more ludicrous investment in intermittent, unreliable and insanely expensive wind power.

For renewable energy to form part of a first world economy it must be available on demand – which excludes wind power.

Hydro-power is a stand-alone renewable, which is cheap and available on demand.  The current perverse policy has deprived Hydro-power operators of the capital needed to reinvest in ageing Hydro-systems and deprived them of the incentive to invest in new Hydro-power capacity.

So here’s the STT challenge: Ian – if you want to go down in history as a policy heavyweight – who single-handedly resurrected Australian industry by making energy once again affordable – then scrap the RET and the REC now.

Do it for struggling manufacturers – do it for the tens of thousands of families who can no longer afford electricity – and do it for your Country.

And remember – Infigen doesn’t get a vote.


And Minister Macfarlane: ask not what Infigen can do for you?
Ask what you can do for your Country?

About stopthesethings

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


  1. Well said Paul.

    Ian if you want keep your Ministry for Industry, talk to the people that put you in Government, NOT the b****y wind industry, as they are only interested in getting as much money off people who voted you and the Coalition into Goverment. The wind industry don’t care if all the infrasound and low frequency noise destroys peoples lives that live in and around industrial wind turbines.

    Just put all this nonsense to an end, so every one can get on with their lives once again.

  2. ACTION stop the waste says:

    …stop the waste..? Liberal core promise???

    Stop the industrial turbines Tony. Simple.

    They are an international corporate scam ripping off governments and trashing citizen’s lives.

    Mr Miskelly nailed it. The turbines are USELESS and DANGEROUS.

    Mr Flannery of Siemens has lost his Climate Commission. Congratulations on this ACTION Tony.

    Time now to axe the turbines.

  3. Tony Abbott has been busy sacking people this week. Let’s hope he won’t hesitate to do the same to MacFarlane if need be…

  4. Jackie Rovensky says:

    Great heartfelt recommendations Paul.

    Mr McFarlane may not hear but hopefully others in the Government ranks will, and will advice the Government to read, listen and learn, so they can make decisions that will stop the rort, the fraud of this industry. Hopefully they will see that acknowledging they got it wrong will be seen as a strength, and act on it.

    For those other members of the Government and for their researchers, secretaries and general dogs bodies please get the message across to your Ministers and backbenchers that this industry has driven a huge hole into the pockets of Australians, both from having to pay back the loans secured by Labor to keep the rort going as well as a hole in our pockets from the cost of using electricity at our homes and businesses. Two holes that make one big one, which needs to be stitched shut so we can spend more on our health, education support for farmers and manufacturing as well as food for the table.

  5. Reblogged this on Mothers Against Wind Turbines and commented:
    This letter says it all. The whole windscam is a hoax to grab our money!

  6. David Mortimer says:

    What a read. I actually had a lump of pride in my throat as I came to the end of the article by Paul. It says it all, loud and clear.

    Now let us see if Mr Macfarlane rises to the challenge. My bet is that he won’t because:
    a. he is too pally with the wind industry
    b. he is a little man with a massive ego
    c. he doesn’t have the scrotal capacity to make such decisions
    d. he doesn’t realise that his personal opinions are not consistent with public demands and requirements.
    e. and of course….he is a politician???

    Good on you Paul.

  7. It absolutely amazes me that Mr. McFarlane says he will sit down for talks with the wind industry. We voted the coalition into power, you can bet no-one in the wind industry or the public service did, so why won’t he talk to the people who elected him to stop this rot and tell the charlatans to rack off.

  8. WOW.
    We need to read again and again.
    God Bless common sense.


  1. […] the world and still fail to produce any sparks at all at least 100 times each year (see our posts here and here and – for the same story told in Britain – […]

  2. […] on a regular basis. Paul Miskelly has spelt it out in clear and simple terms – see our posts here and here and […]

  3. […] Miskelly and Derek Partington have spelt it out in clear and simple terms – see our posts here and here and […]

  4. […] And worse, he wraps it up in the fallacy that wind power is all about reducing CO2 emissions – which intermittent and unreliable wind power, delivered at crazy, random intervals and backed up 100% of the time by fast start-up fossil fuel generation sources can never do (see our posts here and here and here). […]

  5. […] But there is NO evidence that wind power has “won” – or is even capable of ever “winning” – ANY such reduction.  On the contrary, there is ample evidence to show that connecting fans to a grid designed to supply power to punters 24 x 365 results in INCREASED CO2 emissions.  See our posts here and here and here. […]

  6. […] Miskelly and Derek Partington have spelt it out in clear and simple terms – see our posts here and here and […]

  7. […] brilliant work – which covers much of the same territory – in our posts here and here and […]

  8. […] real and INSANE cost of backing up a generation source delivered at crazy, random intervals with OCGTs and banks of diesel […]

  9. […] they can be fired up in a heartbeat whenever wind watts go AWOL – which in Australia occurs over 100 times each year for hours and sometimes days at a […]

  10. […] Minister, Ian Macfarlane and the wind weasel’s pet acoustic consultants on the same score here and […]

  11. […] In our last post, Paul Miskelly gave Ian Macfarlane an almighty serve over his apparent sympathy for wind weasels. […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: