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This H L Mencken quote below is one of my favourites and used to feature on my website home page when I was on 2GB.
As the great American journalist H. L. Mencken put it,
“…The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary…”
No one was talking about global warming when Mencken was in his prime but, were he casting his sceptic’s eye over the growing mess that is Australia’s power network, he would recognise such a condition and its consequences in an instant…”
“….The latest Australian Energy Market Operator report on the state’s electricity market illustrates much more than the inevitable problems associated with integrating intermittent renewables, it also highlights the assault on logic that is part and parcel of the great green dream
The Renewal Energy Target (RET) scheme is a splendid example of a policy cancer that, if not checked, will continue to inflict substantial economic damage. The green vision of the perfect, Gaia-friendly electricity-distribution system was introduced during the Howard government with the modest target of a mere 2% contribution from renewables. Since then the target has grown tenfold at the federal level while the states have gone much further, with the talk now of seeing renewables contribute as much as 50% by 2030.
The consequences have been dire: the wholesale electricity market has been distorted by the emphasis on and subsidies for roof-top solar and wind, impairing the financial basis for operating traditional and reliable sources of baseload power.
What follows is an examination of the lack of logic informing the RET scheme and uses South Australia as the textbook example of what not to do when mixing renewable energy into electricity-supply systems.
Intermittent wind power in South Australia is correlated with wind power variations in Victoria. So if the government of Victoria has a renewable energy target similar to South Australia then that may — almost certainly will — lead to the destruction of baseload operations in Victoria.
The conclusion from this analysis is that renewable energy policies have not been well thought out and, if continued without some thoughtful modifications, may have severe economic consequences.
Capping the RET scheme now might dissuade green-minded state governments from encouraging and adding wind farms to meet their 50% renewables aspirations. That would be the logical response, hence an unlikely one from a political class in the thrall of “sustainable” visions…”