Articles from Australia
Households are paying some of the highest electricity prices in the world and manufacturing industries have been closing or downscaling because of cost pressures created in part by rapidly rising power prices. Energy bills are also creating commercial hardship for struggling retailers as well as hospitality and other sectors. The largest single factor in the power crisis is the renewable energy target demanding 23 per cent of electricity be supplied by renewables, which are subsidised by consumers.
Seven years ago, in my first column in this series, I wrote of how wind farms were causing much angst in the bush.
The Australian Energy Market Operator confirmed wind generation output during times of peak demand could fall to as low as 2 per cent of installed capacity. Even when spread geographically across the entire National Electricity Market, wind power could not be guaranteed to deliver more than 5 per cent of its promise.
Victorian taxpayers will cough up hundreds of millions of dollars to help pay for the Andrews government’s upcoming solar and wind farm auction. ...The move will punch a $250-350 million hole in the state Budget, and experts warn the full cost could be much higher.
Tablelands residents have accused the developer of a wind farm of destroying part of a mountain for the $380 million project and turning it into an “eyesore”.
The question of whether wind turbines are physically capable of producing the adverse reactions claimed is unresolved. However, it is now scientifically demonstrated by Swedish researchers that amplitude-modulated low-frequency wind turbine noise can directly cause sleep disturbance, even in young fit people taking part in its research study.
AUSTRALIA: Goldwind Australia has confirmed three workers were transported to hospital following an incident at the White Rock wind project in New South Wales.
A factor which may have impacted on the expansion of wind driven technology in Australia was the ongoing claim by people living near turbines that their health had been impacted. The institute is working with acoustics experts to test surrounding inaudible, or infrasound noises, generated by wind turbines.
Trade union, CFMEU, slammed the wind power giant on Tuesday, accusing them of unsafe work practices. CFMEU organiser Dean Rielly said they had been warning Goldwind management about safety concerns at the wind farm for some time –highlighting the need for hard barriers at embankments.
If electricity consumers were not already being squeezed by the closure of Victoria's coal burning Hazelwood power station, an extraordinary lack of wind in the past few months has certainly compounded the problem. The large wind-focussed generator, Infigen Energy has been forced to downgrade its full-year profit forecast due to what it says has been the least windy period it has endured put its current capacity together in 2012.
Electricity prices will jump another 20 per cent, partly because global warming policies are closing cheap coal-fired power plants. With even supply now threatened, the Turnbull Government is considering building its own plant.
A spokesman for Mr Fydenberg said the "Government considered the proposed wind turbines would create a considerable, intrusive visual impact". "This would affect the spectacular and scenic landscapes for which the world heritage island group is recognised," the spokesman said in a statement.
Victorian firm Maddens Lawyers filed the class action against Infigen Energy Ltd in the NSW Supreme Court after a crow electrocuted by a transmission line carrying power from the company’s Woodlawn wind farm sparked the fire, which burned 3400ha and caused up to $20 million damage.
This week we learned that the complete power blackout that occurred in South Australia last September was due to the existence of a large number of wind farms that simply ceased to operate in the context of a strong storm, in turn causing the interconnector with Victoria to trip.
South Australian power consumers have been slugged for a massive $4.5 million price spike for services that stop energy infrastructure from blowing up. The Australian Energy Regulator released a report on Tuesday night into why prices for services which stabilisethe grid exceeded $5000/MWh in SA on October 18 last year.
New windfarms in South Australia will face tougher technical standards, amid concern the state's heavy reliance on intermittent renewable generators has left the electricity grid prone to collapse. ...AEMO found a failure of windfarms to ride through voltage disturbances contributed to the catastrophic chain of events which caused the blackout.
Taxpayers in South Australia face being slugged tens of millions of dollars for dirty carbon dioxide-emitting diesel generators the Weatherill government wants shipped in by December to prevent pre-election blackouts.
The problem is, the wind doesn't always blow and the sun doesn't always shine. The high peaks in South Australia's energy usage don't always match up with a large chunk of its increasingly intermittent supply. Intermittency isn't the only problem though. Under current market settings, wind farms aren't required to provide the same stability coal and gas has traditionally provided to the energy grid.
In dry, technical language the Australian Energy Market Operator has warned Queensland’s Premier, Annastacia Palaszczuk, that her renewable energy policy could take the state down the South Australian road, where they have the misfortune to pay high prices for unreliable electricity. The Palaszczuk policy would massively increase Queensland’s reliance on intermittent renewables and erode the value of state assets such as black coal-fired generators, which provide baseload power. And all this for no discernible effect on climate change. It is a profoundly irrational course.
After a year of campaigning against a proposed $700 million wind farm, AFL chief executive Gillon McLachlan today begins a legal fight to protect his childhood home before a full-bench court in Adelaide.