Alan Jones interviews David Leyonhjelm on the Senate’s Inquiry Into the Great Wind Power Fraud & Cross-Bench LRET Plan


STT Champion: Alan Jones


The wind industry in Australia is in full-scale panic because the Senate’s cross-benchers (who hold the balance of power in the Upper House) have won Coalition support for their Inquiry into the great wind power fraud: which will turn a (long-overdue) blowtorch on the biggest rort in Australian history (see our post here).

Adding to the wind industry’s mounting woes is the fact that the cross-benchers have also put together a plan that will put the wind industry out of its misery, by elevating the place of “old” hydro power and small-scale solar – especially “stand alone solar” in remote locations – under the Large-Scale Renewable Energy Target (LRET): both “old” hydro and small-scale solar are perversely excluded from the LRET  (the plan is available here).

The vast bulk of hydro capacity was built pre-1998 and is, therefore, ineligible to participate – a matter that has Tasmanian Senator, Jacqui Lambie seeing red (see our posts here and here). For a run down on the Inquiry and the cross-benchers’ plan see our post here.

STT hears that the cross-bench plan is with Tony Abbott’s office and has already won the PM’s tick of approval.

The Inquiry and the plan has been pushed along by cross-bench Senator, David Leyonhelm, who appears in this recent interview with Alan Jones on 2GB.

Alan has a little radio show that more than just a few Australians tune into each morning. Syndicated through over 77 Stations and with close to 2 million listeners Countrywide – AJ as he’s known – is one of those people that leads the political charge on many issues that really affect ordinary Australians and which the rest of the press ignore.

You can listen to the audio or read the transcript below.



Alan Jones AO: A couple of weeks ago I interviewed Dr Jay Tibbetts – you might recall is an American. A medicical adviser to the Brown County Health Department in Wisconsin. He attacked the Australian Medical Association, who quite disgracefully, but not surprisingly given that the leadership of that mob now is hopelessly of the left. And the AMA virtually arguing that there was no problem with these sub-audible infra-sound emitted by wind turbines. And Doctor Tibbetts cited endless international evidence in relation to the health risks posed by the low-frequency noise that wind turbines generate.

Well that interview lead to an email that I received this week from eastern Europe.  Amazingly they had heard my interview, on the Internet with Doctor Tibbetts in relation to what I call the lunacy of wind farms and the sleep deprivation that they cause and my email correspondent said “I just wanted to tell you how much we appreciated your excellent interview and your courage to do it. I know how risky this is.  My emailer said he posted the interview on his website and it went ballistic. And I’m told, he says it’s spreading from Austria to Germany, and Finland and Ireland and Poland and many other countries. My emailer said ‘I can guarantee you that all people in Europe, especially in Germany were like crazy and spread your interview like crazy when they got it on my Facebook page.

Well people are waking up to the lies and deceit peddled by governments and renewable energy companies all over the world. There is a report this week by AGL energy of all outfits who found that non-solar households are paying hidden subsidies and more than $200 million a year, here in Australia to households who have solar roofing panels.  Now we know that this wind power-solar power are driving up the cost of what you pay for electricity and what business pays. And the AGL Chief economist Paul Simshauser, said the problem of wealth transfers to renewable energy sources was increasing. In other words to prop up renewable energy, you the taxpayer have money taken out of your pocket and that, in billions of dollars, goes to renewable energy companies. Most of them foreign companies.

Now people increasingly can’t hack this. We’re told 650 electricity customers are complaining to their retailer every day about electricity prices. The Australian Energy Regulator’s annual report found disconnections have surged and more than 237,000 New South Wales households, one in seven customers, has complained to their provider about pricing in the financial year ended 30 June this year.

Now we are spending billions of dollars on wind energy. It accounts for less than 2% of power generation in China, 3% in America. And this whole renewable energy thing is completely out of control. Wind power costs up to $214 per megawatt hour, coal $78 to $91. If the renewable energy mob want a set of rules that would be simple – then go ahead with your wind farm but don’t ask for taxpayers’ money. How can wind turbine companies buy off a farmer for $10,000 a turbine and then that same company be subsidised by the taxpayers? Who are you.

I have spoken to so many people, but one of them is Andrew Gardiner in Napthine’s electorate. He’s running for election this Saturday, the Premier of Victoria. Next to 140 turbines, 150 metres high, 56m blades – the biggest monsters in the southern hemisphere, some are 90 m from his property. Eight of them, 1.7 km from his home. And he’s been bullied and intimidated by AGL. I repeat – coal-fired power $78-91 a megawatt hour wind power, up to $214 per megawatt hour and solar power, over $400 a megawatt hour.

And here you’ve got this Gullen Range wind farm near Goulburn, which breaks nearly every rule that governed its application to operate. But don’t worry, it’s foreign owned. Would you believe Canberra, were meant to be spending 17,000 million dollars (17 billion), erecting between 7000 and 10,000 of these wind turbines. Yet Germany are pushing ahead with new coal-fired electricity plants because political and public concern there is increasing over the cost of energy. China is building a new coal fired power station every 10 days every year. And remember when I spoke to Angus Taylor, the new member for Hume, turbines in his electorate enjoys subsidies to $500,000,000 to a $billion a year.

Well David Leyonhjelm is a New South Wales Senator, representing the Liberal Democrats and along with Senators Madigan, Day, Xenophon and Back, David Leyonhjelm succeeded in establishing, has succeeded in establishing – and this will put a few noses out of joint – a Senate inquiry into wind turbines. This will blow the whole show open. It was a narrow vote. Because you see people like Mcfarlane, the Energy Minister, they’re in bed with wind companies. 33 to 32. The inquiry will be known as The Select Committee on Wind Turbines. It will investigate regulatory governance, or lack of it, over wind turbines, their economic impact, which can only be negative. It will examine on household power prices of wind power, we know that. The implementation of planning processes which as you can see with Gullen Range, are ignored. The integrity of national wind farm guidelines – they have none. The impact of wind turbines on firefighting – that’s another story altogether – and crop management. And the committee will have the power to send for and examine people and documents. And it will report its proceedings from time to time and make interim recommendations and it will report by June 24 next year. This is a very pioneering and important initiative and not before time.

Senator David Leyonhjelm is on the line. Senator, good morning.

Senator David Leyonhjelm: Good morning Alan.

Alan Jones AO:  Just before we go down to the guts of this, I note the notice paper and it tells us that the inquiry will look into ‘the role and capacity of the National Health & Medical Research Council in providing guidance to state and territory authorities’ and ‘the effect that wind towers have on fauna and aerial operations around wind turbines’. I couldn’t find any where in the terms of reference of the inquiry an investigation into the health impact of these wind turbines. Is that on your agenda?

Senator David Leyonhjelm:  It’s on our agenda and there is another item there that says ‘Any related matter’. So it certainly we’ll be taking that into account. The only thing is we – the emphasis of this inquiry is towards the other matters, more than health, because there have been two inquiries into health already. The problem with it is they’ve been ignored pretty much.

Alan Jones AO:   Absolutely.

Senator David Leyonhjelm:   We didn’t think – we will be going over that ground, we will be looking at that again – but there are a lot of additional complaints about wind farms. They are, I don’t know where they all are, all but certainly some of them are extremely noxious neighbours. And we are receiving just so many complaints about them.

Alan Jones AO:   Absolutely, I am to. I have a file that I couldn’t jump over here too. Incidentally, as you would be aware there is an election here on Saturday, this opposition leader, fellow, Andrews, the Labor leader, is promising to reduce the mandatory buffer zone between properties and wind farms if he wins the election. I mean it is currently 2 km the exclusion zone, which is not enough, he’s promised to reduce it to 1 km.

Senator David Leyonhjelm:   It’s amazing. And, you know that reflects the way we did this committee. We knew that there’s significant support for wind farms on both sides of the house. And what we did was a little bit sneaky to be quite frank. We’ve called it a ‘select committee’, so it’s not a reference to an existing standing committee, which are dominated by Labor and the government, so this is basically a cross-bench inquiry. There are seven official members of the committee, plus we can co-opt more, other participating members. It’s only two from the government one from Labor, one from the Greens, and three from the cross-bench. And plus, we can bring in other participating cross-bench members if if we wish to.

Alan Jones AO:  But see you’re raising a very valid point here because the public feel that they’ve got nowhere to turn because both Labor and the Coalition are in bed with this mob.

Senator David Leyonhjelm:   Yes, well that’s the point. That’s why we said this that it’s not going to be appropriate for it to go to an existing committee, because the cross-bench doesn’t have much say on those.

Alan Jones AO:   Absolutely. You see I have said many times – I am talking to Senator David Leyonhjelm from New South Wales – I’ve said many times David, that you can’t release a drug onto the market unless all the likely consequences from the drug are subjected to rigourous scrutiny. So how could you build wind farmers, or approve coal seam gas extraction, without providing the answers to the very legitimate questions about health and the impact on individuals that these things have.

Senator David Leyonhjelm:   Yes. You can never answer every single question and science is an endless pursuit, but there are some just glaring questions why, for example, does the Gullen Range wind farm, where they have put these things almost 200m away from where they’re supposed to be, and then said ‘well, we’re a renewable energy company we can do whatever we like’. And then the Clean Energy Regulator hands over money to them with no accounting.

Alan Jones AO:   Thank God for you. Thank God for you. They should be stopped in their tracks now. They are in breach of the consent application, they should be stopped, shouldn’t they?

Senator David Leyonhjelm:  We hear lots of stories, where because they are renewable energy, they think they’re above the law. They don’t think they have to comply with planning guidelines and directions and so forth.

Alan Jones AO:   This bloke’s a breath of fresh air.

Senator David Leyonhjelm:   We are not even satisfied those guidelines are particularly comprehensive and thorough anyway.

Alan Jones AO:   Or stringent, no. You have said, just for the benefit of my listeners, and I’ll just get you to comment on some of the quotes that you’re on the record as having uttered. “The dramatic surge in power bills has been major factor in the decline of our manufacturing sector and the loss of thousands of jobs. In little more than 10 years, the Renewable Energy Target has rocketed Australia from almost the cheapest to the most expensive electricity in the world”. They are your words.

Senator David Leyonhjelm:   Yes. Well in fact that brings me to another subject where also the cross-bench is also are trying to do something constructive with the government on this Renewable Energy Target. As you probably know, Labor and the government stopped negotiating a week or so back and now, it’s in our court. We are working on a plan – there’s been some media reports on it in the last couple of days. We are working on a plan in whcih we will address this issue of high prices of electricity, unachievable energy target, the penalty rates kicking in, all that sort of nonsense.

Alan Jones AO:  Well you said in August, ‘The latest figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics show in the five years to June 2012, Australian retail electricity prices rose by 72%, with even higher increases in Melbourne and Sydney’. You said, ‘Senators and MPs, however, don’t need to worry about whether staying warm in chilly Canberra may send them broke. Perhaps if they had to pay for their own heating and air-conditioning in Parliament House it would concentrate their minds on the important discussion we need to have about the future of the Renewable Energy Target’. Good on you.

Senator David Leyonhjelm:   Well, it’s tragic. You know there are people who are suffering, genuinely suffering from energy poverty. They cannot turn on their heaters during the winter. They suffer in the cold just because they cannot afford their electricity bills. So they’re frightened of receiving a bill that they can’t afford to pay.

Alan Jones AO:  Absolutely. You … yes it is tragic. You quote a report from the accounting firm Deloittes, showing the Renewable Energy Target will “stifle the economy, cost jobs, and drive up prices and is a very inefficient means of reducing greenhouse gas emissions”. Now Terry McCrann years ago told me David, on this program, if you want to decarbonise the Australian economy, you’re writing a national suicide note. And I mean that you’re the only people focusing on this issue.

Senator David Leyonhjelm:   Yes, well somebody has to. I’m really encouraged, that the government acknowledges the problem, I just don’t like the solution, or the politics of the solution. The renewable energy industry has an awful lot of supporters. And it’s a nice warm thing motherhood type stuff to support renewable energy.

Alan Jones AO:  And have you ever noticed, when any of the MPs retires from Parliament they go and get jobs with them. Hey hey? Oh, Mr Mcfarlane will be lining one up right now. He won’t be standing at the next election don’t worry. I mean you said, and this is true, ‘the net effect of this subsidy, renewable energy subsidies, is to hand an additional 17 billion dollars of our money to these companies over 15 years for no measurable environmental benefit.

Senator David Leyonhjelm:   Yes that’s right. And it’s worse than that, I mean it’s having negative effects. In fact one of the aspects of the inquiry is to actually determine what is the energy and emission output – input and output from a whole of life. So, from the point when these turbines are made and they run, through to the other end when they are dismantled and thrown on the scrap heap – what’s the net energy and emission output.

Alan Jones AO:  Absolutely

Senator David Leyonhjelm:   I have a sneaky suspicion that a bit like the Prius car it’s not the right direction.

Alan Jones AO:  Absolutely. Finally – and we could go on forever on the things that you’ve said. And it’s very encouraging that someone at least is taking this cause up. But you’ve said, “It is undisputed that the wind generation industry is not viable anywhere in the world without government or customer subsidies”, you said “It’s just government-mandated corporate welfare”.

Senator David Leyonhjelm:   That’s exactly right – they’re just not viable without subsidies.

Alan Jones AO:  Keep at it – keep at it my friend. Keep at it. You’re the hope of the side.

Senator David Leyonhjelm:   Alright – thanks Alan.

Alan Jones AO:   Well done, there he is. Senator David Leyonhjelm. A major senate inquiry into this whole rubbish of renewable energy and wind power.

david leyonhjelm

Senator David Leyonhjelm: hell-bent on
killing the great wind power fraud.

About stopthesethings

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


  1. To properly grasp the great wind power fraud you have to stop looking on the outside of the box.

    The real fraud is on the inside when the Warren Buffets of this world lent the money to start this great roller coaster ride they collected all their money back with interest in the first and second round of subsidies and rode off into the sunset never to be heard of again.

    Every action or word spoken thereafter is only secondary for us stupid mugs who have swallowed all this green garbage.

    We will be putting ourselves through all this aggravation for the next 20-30 years at the expense of our mental well-being, worry, noise, visual eyesore. While union controlled super funds, some without the acknowledgement of members, being used to prop up this great big wanking green dream; and those who can least afford it are going to have to pay for it!!!

  2. Jackie Rovenksy says:

    Well said Melissa. The damage caused to people around the world is horrific.
    Those living in cities may not suffer the same or all the health effects of those living near these symbols of ‘Greenies gone rancid’ but there will be those suffering health issues related to not being able to keep warm/cool or not being able to keep food fresh as refrigerators are turned off due to the cost of electricity.

    Those who continue to shut out the truth staring them in the face will soon have to face the world they helped create.

    This would be an even harder world to face if it weren’t for those people, including MP’s, Senators, Doctors, scientists, acousticians, economists, radio hosts and members of the public, who are fighting to have the truth rise above the mire of lies, uncontrolled avarice and downright thuggery which this industry has promulgated here and elsewhere.

    They cannot continue to hide anymore, time and evidence is against them. It’s a wonder there are still those so caught in the cesspit of lies have not managed to find their way out yet.

    Or is it just a matter that they are unable to acknowledge they are/were wrong? If so, then it’s time they got a back bone and accepted they are/were wrong in giving support to such a dishonourable industry.

  3. Maple leaf says:

    Put Canada on your list Alan, we could do with more of you!

  4. Old Ranga says:


  5. Every day I am grateful our voices and stories about impacts of renewable energy on our health and on our lives are being heard and subtly investigated. I am grateful for the many people standing at our backs saying we believe you and are bending over backwards to see the (un)-renewable industry is scrutinised and bought to account.

    This inquiry should leave no stone unturned in the search for discovering the true costs not only to the neighbours of wind farms but to each and every Australian. How many people know Australian rural communities, landscapes and unique way of life have been altered by the wind industry forever? Neighbours, friends and families torn apart by mistrust; poor benefactors of wind farm social management and social engineering, the higher living costs, and turbine impacts causing sleepless nights of agony and overall poorer mental and physical health.

    People living in the dark ages too fearful to watch telly at night because they can’t afford to, revered elders sleeping in cold beds and homes and turning in early when the sun sets, living by candle light. Yes this is Australia and yes I attribute these impacts to the wind industry.

    Why should these renewable companies and shareholders profit and profit again. There should be no people in Australia living without choice by candlelight. People mistakenly believe rubbish that wind power is ‘free’…it’s not. Not one person gets free electricity with the wind industry. A turbine will never ‘power’ my house or yours let alone a whole city. They can’t operate without coal fired back-up and uselessly feed off the ‘green dream’, why have them?

    It’s time Australia set the example to allow not only us but other countries to adopt meaningful regulations to protect people from public harm being caused by an industry that foolishly believes it is above the law. They and neither should the regulatory bodies escape this Inquiry’s scrutiny. Visit Portland take a look at Stage 4 of the Portland Wind Energy Project and then tell me why they should be built at 1km or 5km or even 10km from homes and with no regard for the established communities. Oh and if you think they are quiet, beautiful things that don’t harm people or nature or the wildlife you are unfortunately very wrong.

    I am totally disgusted over and over again at being told, “well that’s your opinion and you are entitled to it”. This inquiry will not be simply opinion or politics but serious matters requiring not only Parliamentary investigation but action. We’ll not only be entitled to our opinion, we neighbours are justly entitled to full protection from industrial broadband noise and full protection of our health and well-being.

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