Wicked Waste: Voter Fury At The Staggering & Mounting Cost of Australia’s Wind & Solar Subsidies

Morrison: first came the promise, then came the betrayal.

 

By throwing another lazy $billion dollars at intermittent wind and solar, PM Scott Morrison has not only lost the constituency that voted for him, he’s lost the plot.

20 years ago, Australians enjoyed the cheapest power in the world; now they the prices they suffer are up there with the world’s most expensive. All thanks to a ludicrous obsession with heavily subsidised and chaotically intermittent wind and solar. South Australia, its wind and solar capital, suffers the world’s highest power prices, bar none.

Like a never-ending train wreck, Australia’s energy crisis is a series of predictable disasters, inevitable disappointments and dashed hopes.

The quiet Australians who voted for the Liberal/National Coalition back in May held (not unreasonable) hopes that, having ditched renewables obsessed PM, Malcolm Turnbull, a Morrison led government would not only arrest Australia’s power pricing and supply debacle, but that Morrison and his Energy Minister, Angus Taylor would deliver on their promise to bring power prices back to earth.

No such luck.

Instead of getting serious about preserving meaningful, dispatchable electricity generation sources, namely coal-fired plants, Morrison has decided to head straight for the periphery. Rather than maintaining baseload plants, Morrison has determined to throw hundreds of millions at pumped hydro, mythical mega-batteries and interconnectors (giant extension cords between states).

With renewable energy rent seekers drooling over another opportunity to wallow in subsidies and soft loans, and Australia’s embattled manufacturing and mineral processing industries on the brink, former Labor leader, Mark Latham managed to capture the sense of betrayal felt by the millions who thought that their vote for Morrison meant a return to energy sanity.

‘The Morrison government has lost the plot’: Mark Latham
2GB
Alan Jones and Mark Latham
30 October 2019

Mark Latham has slammed the government for ‘wasting public money’ by investing in clean energy.

The Morrison government has pumped an extra $1 billion into the Clean Energy Finance Corporation, which cannot be used on new or upgraded coal-fired power projects.

NSW One Nation leader Mark Latham tells Alan Jones it’s “a disgusting waste of public money”.

“It’s the moment the Morrison government has lost the plot.

“If renewables are so good, if these companies are so effective why aren’t they paying for it?

“These companies are giggling at the foolishness of the Prime Minister.”
2GB

 

 

Transcript

Alan Jones: It’s Mark Latham Day. As always. He is in the vanguard, thank God for him, challenging the parliament in New South Wales and beyond, I might add, to understand the issues that many of you are articulating every day. He’s on the line. Mark, good morning.

Mark Latham: Good morning, Alan.

Alan Jones: Mark, not a New South Wales parliament issue, but can I ask you for a comment on an extra $1 billion into this useless Clean Energy Finance Corporation by the Morrison government? It’s not the Shorten government, it’s not the Green’s government, it’s the Morrison government, and none of it, none of it to be spent on new or upgraded coal-fired power projects.

Mark Latham:  Well, Alan, that’s the moment the Morrison government has lost the plot, because people have got to understand what’s going on here that these private companies all cashed up with other government subsidies have built wind farms and solar farms in remote western parts of New South Wales, and then they turn around and say, “How do we link to the grid? How do we put the wires, the transmission in place to link to the grid?” And now Morrison is funding that for them. If renewables are so good, if these companies are so effective, why aren’t they paying for it? Why is it that the most substantial investment the Morrison government is making in western New South Wales, not for battling family farmers. It’s for rich, cashed up, already-subsidised renewable companies that are refusing to do their own transmission links when clearly it should be their responsibility, not that of the taxpayer.

This is a disgusting waste of public money. A cross-subsidy to a mob who’ve hired the liberal party lobbying firm of choice. I mean, it goes around, it comes around. The taxpayer’s a loser, the farmers are a loser, and these companies are giggling at the foolishness of the prime minister.

Alan Jones: Well, it was a showdown last week and it’s now hit the airwaves. I was aware of this. Matt Canavan stood, he’s the energy minister, or he’s one of those people anyways, involved with coal-fired power and he’s an advocate for it all. And he lined up Scott Morrison. The language was very Anglo Saxon, but he certainly, and there are people on the front bench of the government who are unhappy and so they should be, I mean, how is this different from Di Natale or Bill Shorten?

Mark Latham: Well it’s not. It’s subsidising big companies who should fund these costs themselves. They don’t want to make money out of solar and wind and their already heavily subsidised. They should fund their own transmission costs into the grid. It shouldn’t be a taxpayer responsibility, especially when other priorities are so pressing. But the other thing is the subsidies for battery technology, completely unproven. The head of AGL, so this bloke is in the renewables car, the head of AGL has said that for 100% Australian renewable economy, you would need 350,000, 350,000 shipping containers full of batteries. If you laid them end on end, they’d stretch from Sydney to Perth and into the Indian Ocean. This technology just doesn’t exist, and Morrison is washing good money down the drain. Then he goes to pumped hydro. We’ve had a trial with this. They’re trying to get up the Snowy 2.0 scheme, Turnbull’s baby.

It’s going to cost $7 billion. The environmentalists are complaining about it, ironically, saying it’s going to wreck the park, and the outcomes from it are going to be minimal. So if Snowy 2.0 is not stacking up, why throw part of another billion dollars at pumped hydro? Now pumped hydro works in Tasmania, but the Australian mainland is the driest, flattest landmass on earth. It’s not suited to pumped hydro. So Alan, all of this stuff is just science fiction. Morrison hasn’t done his work. He’s engaged in a public policy fantasy and the taxpayer is the big loser, and ultimately, ultimately, these renewable projects don’t keep the lights on. At the end of the day we’ll have blackouts because of this public policy folly and at every turn where it’s a losing strategy, it’s the moment when the Morrison government has jumped the shark and become a laughingstock.

Alan Jones: Outstanding prosecution of an argument in language everyone understands. The other thing of course, Mark, which is the corollary of this, they’re prosecuting a lie. Their statement says this will provide “the cheapest and most abundant reliable energy.” It certainly won’t be reliable and it certainly won’t be cheap and it certainly won’t be abundant.

Mark Latham: Well, it’s not reliable, because when the sun’s not shining, the wind’s not blowing, there’s no power, no power to dispatch into the grid to keep the lights on. And if you go too heavily down the renewable path, blackouts are inevitable. The market operators already said that. The electricity operators warned Victoria you’re likely to have blackouts in the coming summer, New South Wales in the medium term after the closure of Liddell. The only answer here is dispatchable base-load power, which can come from coal or nuclear and there’s no other alternative.

Alan Jones: Great. Great, absolutely.

Mark Latham: If you don’t understand that as the foundation of your electricity grid …

Alan Jones: You shouldn’t open your mouth.

Mark Latham: Well, you’re setting the country up for a massive failure. The lights go out.

Alan Jones: Absolutely.

Mark Latham: We lose the manufacturing sector. People won’t invest. Households can’t function. You’ve got chaos on the roads. There’s no traffic lights. I mean the blackout scenario is real. Morrison clearly doesn’t understand it. This guy is a first-rate fool with his policy announcement today. You couldn’t believe something as dumb as this, but it’s the prime minister doing it. He’s wasting everyone’s money and we’ll all pay another cost down the track through the blackout.

Alan Jones: And then of course, in spite of all of that dough being available, not one cent, not a dollar, to keep breeding stock from being slaughtered, not one. And the argument, well, he didn’t think of it, so therefore it’s a crook idea. So there’s the rural sector going down the tube. You’ve toured these areas, I have toured these areas. It’s astonishing, isn’t it?

Mark Latham: Well it is, and the prime minister came up with a fantasy. No one had ever heard this argument, but fodder and freight is a state responsibility. No one’s heard of this in the Australian constitution-

Alan Jones: That’s it.

Mark Latham:  … income support, income support, very clearly is a federal responsibility and no doubt about that. But his income support is $1 billion for wealthy renewables companies rather than family farmers. That’s his policy today. And in terms of the reliability of this, Alan, the listeners have got to understand that just recently, just recently, the energy electricity operator told two solar farms in western New South Wales to halve their output, halve their output, because they’d been surging heavily into the electricity grid and destabilising it. The problem with the renewables is that if it’s a sunny day and the wind’s blowing, they generate too much power that surges into the grid. But at night, a still night, there’s no power going into the grid, so all these surges in and out destabilise the power grid and they were told to halve their output. Why are we investing in a technology, an unproven technology, where recently it was told to halve its output? This is just lunacy.

Alan Jones: It is lunacy, but take another thing, a corollary of this as well, lunacy, the state government, I can’t believe it, because the state government of New South Wales is still going on about this transition to renewable. They’re still using this language, transitioning to renewables. And as Mark said last week, solar farms and wind farms going up on prime agricultural land, but the government, if New South Wales has, and you’ve commented on this, but my list is here, your comment here, have a higher ground evacuation policy for coastal properties. What about that? And you’ve made the point about Fort Denison.

Mark Latham: Yeah. There’s no evidence of the sea rising. I think it takes 200,000 years for the seas to rise by a metre, based on the evidence at Fort Denison, where they’ve been measuring the sea level there for 125 years. The coastal evacuation policy is a farce. It punishes private property rights. Landowners are being told to go live in the hills for no genuine scientific basis, so that’s a joke. And in terms of other New South Wales policy on the electricity front, Alan, the giveaway was on Monday. The whole giveaway was on Monday, when Berejiklian and Morrison got together to announce the interconnector from Queensland to New South Wales.

Alan Jones: That’s right. Yeah.

Mark Latham: Now that’s happening for one reason and one reason alone, to access a relatively young coal-fired power stations in coal-rich Queensland.

Alan Jones: Yeah, that’s right.

Mark Latham: If renewables are so good, why do we need a big extension cord into Queensland to access their coal-fired power? If South Australia’s so good, why are they doing the extension cord into New South Wales? It’s like a home renovation show, where there’s an extension cord lapping the country where they’re all trying to get to Queensland’s coal-fired power stations.

Alan Jones: Unbelievable.

Mark Latham: Why aren’t we building our own in New South Wales? The big question is why aren’t we building our own?

Alan Jones: Good on you Mark. My God, we’re lucky to have you. Talk to you next week, my friend.

Mark Latham: Pleasure. Thanks, Alan.

Alan Jones: Outstanding this bloke, isn’t he? There we are, and you heard him. $1 billion into the Clean Energy Finance Corporation by the Morrison government. The left in the Labor Party and the Greens will be cheering. Who are they representing?
2GB

About stopthesethings

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

Comments

  1. Who is going to build the next Base Load Coal Fired Power Station in Australia??????? No one !!!! all the coal fired power stations were originally built by state governments for a reason, BECAUSE no private company could obtain the necessary loans to build one. The future certainly looks bleak for Australia with huge subsided wasted investments in solar and wind. When the whole system collapses, as it will some time in the near future it will have to be the Federal Government that legislates to take over the control of all electricity generation and transmission in Australia or all Australians will have to find some way to supply their own electricity. Keatings policy to privatize the whole Australian electricity industry will probably be taught in Universities economic faculties around the world as the biggest joke and disaster of the 20th century. The only advantage Australian industry had was cheap power but the greatest treasurer in the world was oblivious to that fact.

  2. Reblogged this on ajmarciniak.

  3. Morrison plays the “to hell with the voters” game and he will pay the price. Today you need Trumps stomach in order to attack the real big issues that cause us real problems today. Most politicians want to be politically correct but PC does not cut it anymore. I would say that PC was a big factor to get us into this mess as the green mafia learned how to exploit that. Nobody wants to be the booman. Mr. Morrison, you just got lucky but it still seems that you lack the most important body part that Australia needs – a spine. expect tp get kicked badly when payday comes around.

  4. Roy lamkin says:

  5. Reblogged this on Climate- Science.press.

  6. Source: http://dfat.gov.au/about-us/publications/trade-investment/business-envoy/Documents/business-envoy

    Some FTA talk. snip: (Delegation of EU to Australia, 2019).
    Three sectors have been identified where European companies have found to have had strategic business opportunities. The first is the renewable energy sector where European expertise and investment is at the forefront of building Australia’s clean energy capacity to ensure that it meets its Paris emission reduction commitments.

  7. Terry Conn says:

    Indeed, the Morrison government has lost the plot. The ten ‘amigos’ in the coalition that were pushing for the end of the renewables farce and the building of only dispatchable power plants when Turnbull was prime minister needs to be urgently re established. My local politician was one of them and I wrote to him exhorting him to do everything in his power to get on with demolishing Morrison on this issue. It is hard to comprehend that Angus Taylor, who is the relevant Minister, has gone along with this nonsense – if he hasn’t the stomach for doing what he used to know is right then he should resign – Canavan should be given the job and the Turnbull lites should be shamed and kicked out. Just how many world wide studies have now proved wind and solar cannot work at any price, and how many calculations have been done that demonstrate that the the physical requirements of building and connecting just the theoretical number of these machines needed to power a society simply cannot be built, cannot be dismantled and stored in waste facilities once their minuscule life spans are over and so on – and backup from gas is simply building a complete second system (not to mention this country has in essence banned its mining anyway). The situation is so absurd it appears to confirm Latham’s statement of these politicians ‘losing the plot’ is not just a colloquialism but a correct clinical diagnosis of their mental state.

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