Your View: Renewable energy

CHRIS Hunter (YPCT 25-9-18) misses one very important point in his passionate defence of renewable energy.

Both solar and wind power are part-time. We need a 24/7 power generation system, what happens when we have wind speeds too high for safe turbine operation or several days of 10/10 overcast. We need power at all times.

Germany said it would be 100 per cent renewable — and it has one thing we do not — those three great Ruhr dams. It did not take long to realise they were trying to draw an undrawable bow. Guess what it is seriously looking at, coal power!

Japan has an extensive nuclear program and it is looking at ‘clean burn’ coal technology. It has also reactivated its nuclear program — put in abeyance after Fukushima. The reality is the world usage of coal is increasing, not decreasing.

Mr Hunter said China is manufacturing solar panels in huge quantities, such as lawnmowers, bicycles, spearfishing gear, fishing reels and tackle, chainsaws, vehicles, motor bikes, cutlery and kitchen appliances, to name a few, as well as clothing, both casual and safety.

What is his opinion of India asking for $2.5trillion over 15 years to cut its emissions? Let them stuffocate in their own rubbish! This is no more than blackmail.

Mr Hunter also said Weatherill’s bank tax was a missed opportunity. In reality, it was an impost we certainly did not need. Who will be paying for this gem? No doubt home buyers, mum and dad investors and those getting personal loans, to name a few. When faced with a financial impasse, his solution was to tax his way to prosperity. Like a Ponzi scheme, it never works. He also wanted to hike the GST to 15 per cent so he could service his over-bloated public service.

Weatherill hiked the ESL to make up for mythical money he expected from Gillard which would never have eventuated. We needed an axer but got a taxer and we paid dearly for it.

Of all the renewable energy sources, only one, geothermal, ticks all the boxes. It is not reliant on wind or the sun, and will supply 24/7 power. Unfortunately, it seems to have died a natural death.

One final point: If renewable energy is cheap, why is it subsided? This ups the cost.

Kym Bray, Port Victoria

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1 Response Found

  • Comment Link
    Kat Wednesday, 31 October 2018 13:57

    No power generator is 24/7. Occasionally there are shut downs for maintenance. All power sources need contingency backups for these sorts of occasions. Renewable energy (generally, not plant specific) can be made accessible 24/7, with things like pumped hydro (eg. Kidston: https://www.genexpower.com.au/250mw-kidston-pumped-storage-hydro-project.html), battery, or concentrated solar thermal. There is already a private concentrated solar thermal already operational at Sundrop Farms (http://www.sundropfarms.com/). Soon, another will be built with more to follow.

    It is technically feasible to go 100% renewable, we know that because we have had three different reports from different sets of boffins have that told us that (CSIRO, ATA (now Renew), and BZE). So we know it can be done.

    The question then comes at what cost. Giles Parkinson from Reneweconomy explains subsidies to renewables well (https://reneweconomy.com.au/the-rapidly-disappearing-subsidies-for-wind-and-solar-in-australia-42300/). So building renewables is cheaper than building nuclear or coal (LCOE). So the business reality is that we will get renewables. It is a megatrend; bigger than you or I or even Australia as a whole. Those who think it can be stopped may as well be carried to the shore in their thrones to demand that the sea stop like King Canute. What we have now is an opportunity to manage the transition ( a stitch in time saves nine). The question is if our politicians are savvy enough to grab that opportunity to ensure a smooth transition or if they are going to keep sticking their fingers in their ears singing "la la la".

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