South Australia’s Electric ‘La-La Land’: Renewables Debacle Adds 124% to Wholesale Prices

One of the wind cult’s more pathetic efforts in late 2017 was to run a line that notionally wind powered South Australia’s wholesale power prices were finally heading south. All thanks, of course, to the wonder of sunshine and breezes.

Meanwhile, back on earth, the reality is that South Australia’s wholesale power prices have increased by more than 124% over the last two years.

That increase has nothing to do with increased distribution costs, and is all about the chaos delivered by the weather.

SA’s rocketing wholesale power prices are about the price retailers need to pay conventional generators to secure reliable supply when the wind stops blowing. That cost includes tens of $millions being paid to compensate SA’s gas generators, forced to stay online to ensure a stable supply of electricity.

A recent report by the Energy Security Board, The Health of the National Electricity Market – available here: The Health of the National Electricity Market – delves into the chaos delivered by wind power in SA:

[C]onstraints needed to be introduced in South Australia recently to ensure sufficient synchronous generation remains on line to provide the necessary system strength previously provided by default through traditional synchronous generators.

The constraints, now required for system security, are estimated to be costing tens of millions of dollars. The reasons for this increasing cost includes sub-optimal dispatch and compensation claims. With time and further evolution of the system in a disorderly way, these inefficiencies will continue to grow. This is especially relevant given the high volume of new generation connections currently in train, all of it renewable.

The report goes on to detail how intermittent renewables have resulted in an increasing number of serious supply shortfalls across the entire Eastern Grid: 50 events in 2017, compared with 15 in 2016. The cost of providing reliable electricity to fill the shortfalls is highest in SA, where wind and solar dominate, and chaos reigns. The report warned the cost of these inefficiencies was hard to quantify, but would continue to grow.

That part of the equation is immediately reflected in the retail price (in SA, the highest in the world).

In addition, on those occasions when the wind is blowing, the cost of subsidised wind power – more than $110 per MWh, including the value of the Renewable Energy Certificate – also gets stacked on top of South Australian’s rocketing power bills.

With a band of wind worshipping lunatics in charge, South Australia has become an Electric La-La Land. And the worst is yet to come.

It’s time we shot the horse
Catalaxy Files
David Bidstrup
18 December 2017

There were 5 articles about electricity in my daily papers today, (18 December 2017).

The front page of “The Australian” tells us that “Power bill relief is on the way”, from the middle of next year.

Apparently this will be achieved by more “renewable generation”.

Here in the “electric la-la land” of South Australia, where cheap generation assets are demolished and more fans and batteries are added our average wholesale power price to date, (end November), in 2017 is $123 per megawatt-hour, (AEMO data).

In 2016 it was $90 and in 2015 it was $55, (AEMO data).

The change from 2015 to 2016 was +64% and the change from 2016-2017 was +37%.

The 2 year change is +124%.

2016 was the year Northern Power station closed and 2017 was the year Hazelwood closed.

Any analysis of price changes always show how prices have risen as the percentage of “renewable generation” increases but now it is going to be different.

We are told that 3,900 megawatts capacity of “renewables” will be added between now and 2019/20.

This will produce about 30% of rated capacity when the wind blows and nothing when it doesn’t.

We will pay about $80 per megawatt-hour through the RET on top of whatever the generators get for their electricity.

While this happens the Yallourn power station in Victoria is soon to be another victim of the lunatic government in Victoria and the mob that is “getting out of coal” – but isn’t – will soon consign Liddell to the same fate as Northern Power station.

“The Advertiser” heads its Editorial “End power pain” and makes the comment that “Canberra showed poor leadership as a lost decade in climate and energy policy worsened the problem” – really?

Add to that the terribly bad state governments we have, led by nincompoops, dreamers and political opportunists and I wonder why I bother writing this stuff.

The economic and social damage from this slavish attachment to “saving the planet” is immense.

People lose jobs, employers can no longer afford to operate their businesses and thousands cannot afford the ever increasing cost of electricity.

It is insane.

We have fastened the economic cart to the “renewables” horse and found out that we cannot control it.

We keep getting offered new horses but they are all expensive duds. No one “in power” is smart enough to see that the best solution is to shoot the horse, not get more of the same.

A couple of quotes from Bertrand Russell to finish off:

“The fact that an opinion has been widely held is no evidence whatever that it is not utterly absurd”.


“Many people would sooner die than think; in fact, they do so”

Catalaxy Files

Defunct: Plastic Granulating Services – victim of SA’s Electric La-La Land.

About stopthesethings

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


  1. Ross King says:

    Hear, hear!!! Well said!!

  2. Reblogged this on UPPER SONACHAN WIND FARM.

  3. The absurdity which is wind.

    We’ve just seen that the final tally for UK constraint payments has been done. Over 108 million quid for 2017 and that doesn’t take into account the ‘secret payments’ – forward energy trades – which in 2012 were established as being almost the same sum as known constraint payments. All paid for by consumers, dipping their hands into their pockets whilst being kept in the dark.

    Most of the constraints will be in respect of Scottish wind farms. The running total is now over 366 million pounds since 2010.

  4. No one is happy only those with their pockets being lined

  5. The cityslikers love the idea of free wind. Pity about the real generation costs.

  6. Jackie Rovensky says:

    The quotes are very apt.
    Far too many of our ‘leaders’ are only leading us down the garden path, and there are many more people so stupid to let themselves be led.
    We need Leaders who not only lead but think about where they are taking us – before it’s too late to reverse or change direction. The sooner we have such people the better.
    Unfortunately as it stands we have to wait until the population have become so down at heel and unable to live a normal westernised modern life they will be willing to stand up and be counted and fight for their rights.
    Until then the few of us who can see the danger of the direction we are being led will have to pull harder on the reigns to try and slow the demise..
    That those doing the leading at the moment are meant to be educated, competent people one of whom we are told is a very successful business man only goes to show what our education system has produced many fools.
    That or it has produced people willing and able to manipulate others into believing they are the best of the best, and should be allowed unrestrained control of our nations destiny, these people will do anything to silence those who see through their puffery, the knives come out and they use them. The education system has been taken over by self-serving professionals who act as if they are the only ones who know anything, that all dissenters should be ignored and shut out of discussion. But what is a discussion without dissenting arguments – nothing but a talkfest of like minded know-alls.
    If anything could break the hold these people have over our energy production it is if the people decide enough is enough, and their lives and way of life are worth something. It may cause an upturning of the way people think and behave but if that is what it takes then that’s what is needed.
    Energy is a ESSESNTIAL SERVICE which should be affordable to everyone and be available when it is needed. Our society was built on this dictum. From the day electricity was discovered it was destined to be the base on which industry, business and the way we conducted our lives was built. It helped save lives, in ways such as sterilisation, heating and lighting. It helped keep homes and food preparation areas clean, it helped medical researchers discover new medicines and treatments, it helped industry provide more efficient and safe working environments. Electricity is the base on which our society was built and will survive – but only if we can keep the flow affordable and reliable.

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: