Australia’s Renewable Energy Disaster Puts Lives at Mortal Risk: More Powerless Pensioners Will Freeze to Death this Winter

Craig Kelly is one of the few Liberals with the courage to tell the truth; and to do so publicly, at the risk of bringing his own political future undone.

In the article below, Craig states nothing more than the bleeding obvious.

The cost of subsidising renewables is born disproportionately by the poorest and most vulnerable in Australian society (old age pensioners, the unemployed and families surviving on low fixed incomes).

Those subsidies, which are adding $3 billion a year to retail power bills (and the market perversion they create, rendering conventional generators unprofitable, forcing several of them out of the market altogether) are the primary cause of most recent year-on year retail power price increases of between 16 and 20%, as well as a 140% increase in the number of homes disconnected from the grid, simply because they are unable to pay those crippling power bills.

As a matter of common sense, logic and years of hard public health data, depriving the frail and elderly of electricity to heat their homes (the poor tend to use electric radiators and small electric fan heaters to warm a single room) necessarily puts them at risk of hypothermia. Add a wintertime bout of influenza and mortality rates amongst that at risk group rocket.

Renewable energy will kill people this winter, Liberal MP Craig Kelly says
ABC News
Tom Iggulden
13 July 2017

Renewable energy is killing people this winter, according to Liberal MP and chairman of the Coalition’s backbench energy and environment committee.

“People will die,” he told AM.

“We’ve seen reports only recently that one-in-four Australian households this winter will be frightened to turn the heater on because of the price of electricity.

“We also know that the World Health Organisation has made it very clear that you increase winter mortality, that is you have more people dying in winter, if they cannot afford to heat their home.”

Mr Kelly is blaming rising power prices on the Government’s renewable energy target.

“There are $3 billion this year being paid in subsidies for renewable energy, that pushes up the price of electricity to the consumer,” he said.

The comments come as the Government considers a recommendation from the chief scientist, Alan Finkel, to introduce a Clean Energy Target.

Labor said Mr Kelly’s comments were insulting and accused him of scare-mongering.

“This is another appalling intervention, not just by a backbencher, but the chair of the Coalition’s energy policy committee,” Opposition energy spokesperson Mark Butler said.

He said Dr Finkel’s recent review of the energy system did not blame renewables alone for rising power prices.

“The chief scientist only added to a number of different expert reports that say that the major driver of power price increases at the moment is policy paralysis at the national parliament level,” he said.

Labor has called for Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull to sack Mr Kelly from leading the Coalition’s Energy Policy Committee.

Shadow energy minister Mark Butler said Mr Kelly’s comments were scare-mongering.

“This latest intervention by Mr Kelly frankly makes his position as the chair of that committee, utterly untenable,” he said.

“If Malcolm Turnbull is going to maintain any credibility at this critical time of energy policy debate, he needs to act and he needs to sack Mr Kelly.”
ABC News

Compassion & integrity: Craig Kelly puts the poor & vulnerable first.


As STT has pointed out before, Labor’s Mark Butler is the original class traitor. His South Australian electorate of Port Adelaide is home to a disproportionate number of unemployed and old age pensioners, and yet he continues to advocate for wind power as if his State is not suffering from the highest electricity prices in the world, by a comfortable margin and, consequently, the highest rate of household grid disconnections; and as if his State is not the butt of international jokes, the consequence of a grid that collapses just about every time its 18 wind farms decide to down tools without warning.

So, no surprises for his deranged attack on Craig Kelly – we’d expect nothing less from a lawyer-come-union-hack out to protect the rort which is lining his party’s pockets via the Union Super Funds, controlled by his union mates and the superannuation money they have poured into wind power (see our post here).

But following the maniacal ranting from the Greens and Labor came equally unhinged attacks from within the Liberal Party.

Sarah Henderson, who would have been better suited to the Greens, launched an astonishing tirade against Craig Kelly, claiming he had “gone off the reservation”, labelling his statements “ridiculous”.

Sarah, who – as an ABC ‘journalist’ – drank the Kool-Aid even before she snuck over the line to take the Victorian seat of Corangamite during Tony Abbott’s 2013 Liberal landslide, would have to be one of the least impressive Coalition MPs, unless you’re impressed by a flibbertigibbet with a penchant for hysterical outbursts, such as her latest against Craig Kelly and being busted for drinking takeaway coffee in the House of Representatives, like a ditzy secretary.

As disingenuous as she is obtuse, Henderson runs in lockstep with that other great Liberal wind power apologist from Victoria, Dan Tehan (see our post here).

Whether or not Craig Kelly has “gone off the reservation”, he is a whole lot closer to the electorate and their daily suffering, than Chardonnay socialists, like Sarah Henderson and Dan Tehan, as this Today Tonight broadcast clearly demonstrates.



Rosanna Mangiarelli: But first tonight, Jay Weatherill’s super charged answer to our power woes, while the multi-million dollar battery solution has obvious merits, it still won’t guarantee the end of blackouts, nor cheaper power bills and we’ll still have to rely on diesel and gas. Hendrik Gout with the sceptics who believe South Australians are being kept in the dark, yet again.

Jay Weatherill:  The chief executive officer of Tesla, Elon Musk.

Donathan Roe Key: Imagine those greedy people, with all the money they make.

Hendrik Gout: You would be pushed to find two less likely characters than 96 year old Donathan Roe Key, one in four Australians who this winter can’t afford electricity, and billionaire, Elon Musk.

Donathan Roe Key: No heaters, and if I sit in the back room at night, if I’m still up, no I don’t have any lights on.

Hendrik Gout: But they have one thing in common. Power. The kind you buy and the kind you sell, and in between the two, a government desperate to make good on the mess they’ve made of both.

We’ve already paid for our share of bread circuses, the Stones half a million, Lance Armstrong cost us three million, but Mr Musk is on a different mission. The US whiz-kid made his first fortune with PayPal and subsequent fortunes on government contracts, like this one, $50 million from state tax payers to help manage our fickle power supply. A bank of Elon Musk batteries, like these in California, to store electricity and stabilise an intermittent system, when the wind blows and when it doesn’t.

Mary Morris: I think it’s just there to smooth out the peaks and troughs of the intermittent supply.

Hendrik Gout: Mary Morris lives in the mid-North, the state’s wind farm capital.

Mary Morris: But in terms of providing any meaningful backup for the state, it’s very limited.

Hendrik Gout: How much limited is it, do you think?

Mary Morris: Well if it’s a 129 megawatt hours, that’s enough to power the state for about four minutes.

Hendrik Gout: Chief executive of the Australian energy council, Matthew Warren says it would not have helped in the last state-wide blackout.

Matthew Warren: In the system black, I don’t think it would have many any difference.

Hendrik Gout: The world’s biggest lithium ion battery would keep the lights on for just under ten minutes, but that’s not what it’s there for.

Matthew Warren: South Australia is an accidental experiment in integrating into renewables like wind and solar, so the new battery is an extension pack of an experiment. We’re now seeing how we can use storage to match to those technologies, to try bring greater stability to the grid.

Hendrik Gout: That’s a noble idea, but the thing about experiments is they’re expensive and cheaper electricity, that’s what everyone wants in SA, not to live in the world’s most costly laboratory.

Peter Lewis: Then we look at the daily supply charge, 82.9 and 85.

Hendrik Gout: Peter Lewis, his 91 year old father and 87 year old mother, just one family grappling with higher electricity prices, by around $300 a year, from the 1st of July. Then there’s the supply charge.

Peter Lewis: The information I got from SA power networks was that they’ve gone up by 23%.

Hendrik Gout: You think that it will drive prices down?

Man in the street: Hopefully, yes.

Hendrik Gout: You want the price down?

Woman in the street: Oh yes, course.

Hendrik Gout: He said that in his press release and again here, and here, but as reporters dug deeper, that turned out to be not true.

David Bevan: I thought on the weekend you said this will result in prices dropping?

Jay Weatherill: Yes, I think it will.

Hendrik Gout: Shane Schmidt, from the energy company, Connect Pacific.

Shane Schmidt: Will it bring down price of electricity? Tomorrow, no, absolutely no.

David Bevan: Are you guaranteeing that when this battery comes online, the price of electricity in South Australia will drop?

Jay Weatherill: I’m not going to guarantee anything about what a private sector market does.

Matthew Warren: A battery won’t bring down prices, not at this scale and battery technology is still relatively expensive.

Hendrik Gout: Still, it took a few days for the light bulb to come on.

David Bevan: When you are unchallenged, you make these sweeping statements that this is going to cut the price of electricity in South Australia, but when you are pressed you say, “Well I can’t guarantee that.”

Jay Weatherill: Well guarantee is a different word from saying what we expect it to do.

Dan van Holst Pellekaan: Well the government’s actually withheld most of the details.

Hendrik Gout: Shadow minister, Dan van Holst Pellekaan is sceptical.

Dan van Holst Pellekaan: The government’s been very, very cagey about these details. It still hasn’t actually released the final total expense, the tax payer’s money that the government plans to spend on this and it’s really leaving so many of these details secret. That it does make one wonder why the government is so concerned about releasing them.

Hendrik Gout: The Musk announcement was national news. It made Forbes, The New York Times. Almost unreported, was evidence given at a parliamentary committee this week.

The state’s most senior treasury officer, David Reynolds revealed the state electricity crisis is so deep, taxpayers have to spend 110 million on backup fossil fuelled generation, perhaps a floating power station like this one used in third world countries, as well as a new, extra gas fired station, also paid from state taxes.

300 million with $13 million a year running costs, while the French owners of the Jamestown wind farm connected to the Musk batteries won’t normally sell to our grid. All the wind farm’s usual output is contracted to be sold for the next 20 years to the ACT government.

We’ll get our base load power from diesel or gas, while Canberra gets our carbon free wind energy.
Today Tonight

In the light of what’s laid out above, there is nothing ‘ridiculous’ about Craig Kelly’s observations, which reveals Sarah Henderson as a political lightweight, thoroughly disconnected from the Australian electorate and reality.

The reality is precisely that being suffered by the 25% of Australian households who cannot afford to heat their homes this winter.

As Craig Kelly correctly observes a proportion of those people are at mortal risk of hypothermia, as well as at an elevated risk of succumbing to influenza and the like.

It’s not just comments like those from Mark Butler and Sarah Henderson that are ‘off the reservation’ and utterly ‘ridiculous’, it’s the fact that a once prosperous country has 96-year-olds freezing in their own homes because they can no longer afford to heat them. And all because of a cult-like ideological obsession with renewable energy, manifesting as a delusional attempt to run an entire Country on sunshine and breezes.

What is reported by Today Tonight is the tip of a shameful iceberg, made all the more so by the fact that Craig Kelly is the only Federal MP with the guts to expose it. More power to Craig Kelly; a man with courage and integrity. Pity so many of his political brethren are possessed of neither.

Donathan Roe Key: one of the 25% reduced to blankets this winter.

7 thoughts on “Australia’s Renewable Energy Disaster Puts Lives at Mortal Risk: More Powerless Pensioners Will Freeze to Death this Winter

  1. Excellent piece in the Australian newspaper t-day about Craig Kelly, — ” Electricity cost is number one issue for Australians, says Craig Kelly ” , over 200 comments / likes on- line most supporting what he says/stands for.

  2. Well done Mr Kelly and STT!

    One question no one seems to be asking about the ‘battery’ is how long will it last before it needs (expensive) replacement? I believe that Lithium type batteries have a lifespan of approximately 6 years.

    Remarkably similar to the electoral cycle don’t you think?

  3. On the money once again Today Tonight SA. You are at the head of the media pack in reporting on this issue where Australian free to air TV is concerned. The others are either running to catch up or cannot be bothered to investigate further.

    Some channels are even determined not to.

  4. What is not given in detail by anyone is that when you cannot afford to heat the home you maybe able to put more clothing on, BUT that does not help to heat the air inside the home which the young and frail have to breath, they might as well be sitting in the garden with a campfire burning. Nor does not being able to heat a home help prevent damp which causes damage to homes and helps to breed mould.
    Just think what the Federal Government could be doing with all that money they spend on subsidies.
    They could help those unable to pay or who need to negotiate and/or juggle to be pay electricity bills.
    They could help them keep their homes warm and inviting for children to come home to where a hot meal awaits them after school.
    How much more would they be able to help, do they think the measly $60 something for a couple towards helps to pay the electricity bill?
    It’s time those sitting in their nice warm cos offices and homes who help to fund this industry took off the rose coloured glasses and faced the facts THEY HAVE FAILED THIS NATION, and its time they shut off the supply of funds to this industry and made them stand on their own claims that they can supply our energy needs at a cheaper rate and meet our needs in a reliable fashion.
    STOP THE ROT MR TURNBULL and listen to your whole party in Canberra not just the inner circle or your ‘yes’ people.
    We want to sit in our homes with the ability to keep warm and cosy, to be able to breath in warm air and know we are able to look after our families welfare.

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