Library from Australia
Investment in large-scale renewable energy in Australia remains stagnant almost two years after the Abbott government began a review of the sector, according to an annual survey by Bloomberg New Energy Finance. Investors spent just $15 million since February 2014 on big wind, solar or other clean energy projects.
“If wind farms are all they’re cracked up to be, SA power prices would be half what they are and the state would be making a fortune exporting electricity to the other states,” he said. “But it isn’t, wind turbine owners might be making a fortune but wind power is costing SA families a fortune. It is a con.”
South Australia has increasing reliance on wind as a power crisis looms. The national energy market regulator has warned that South Australia is likely to face continued price volatility and “significantly lower” electricity availability with the retirement of two gas and coal power stations and an increased reliance on wind.
This powerful news broadcast highlights the divide between urban residents clamoring for action to address climate change and the worry and concerns of wind farm development in the rural areas. To view the broadcast, click the image on this page.
Opponents of the Mt Emerald Wind Farm claim expert advice was ignored before the $380 million project was approved by the Queensland Government. The Tablelands Wind Turbine Action group has demanded an emergency meeting with the government to discuss why expert advice about potentially harmful effects of wind turbines was “withheld”.
The new mandate says: “As part of its investment activities in clean energy technologies, the corporation must include a focus on supporting emerging and innovative renewable technologies and energy efficiency, such as large scale solar, storage associated with large and small scale solar, offshore wind technologies, and energy efficient technologies for cities and the built environment.”
“These documents show that warnings from the Queensland Government’s own noise expert were hidden from the relevant Minister and from the public. The expert report reveals that the proposed Queensland Government Wind Farm Code (V2) will not protect resident’s health and well-being and will not protect their environmental values. The documents obtained under RTO also reveal these concerns were not passed on to the Planning Department or the Minister for Planning.”
Sunday the 1st Nov it was lights out at 10pm for 100,000 homes due to an interconnection failure. South Australians are warned that they can expect higher prices and more blackouts due to a reliance on the interconnect & wind power. To view the video broadcast, click the image on this page.
“The extraordinary thing about this is we don’t have a planning system to deal with it. This is the equivalent of a factory being built in the middle of a new suburb,” Taylor told broadcaster Alan Jones in October. “People would scream about it and so they should.”
A proposal for a wind farm at Palmer, in South Australia's Mid-Murray region, has been revised from 130 turbines to 114.
“Many times other supply will kick in and there’s always stuff on standby, but in this case it may well have been the size of the load.” When the Victorian system shut down, 160 megawatts of energy was lost and wind power did not supply energy because it often does not start until 3am.
The Department said it had reviewed the EIS and found that it had not adequately assessed the visual and noise impacts of the project, as required by government guidelines; not undertaken sufficient consultation with local residents about measures to reduce impacts of the wind farm, particularly in regard to visual impacts; and not fully considered the compatibility of the project with local planning controls and the emerging rural-residential nature of the area.
“The CEFC certainly has been making some investments in this area and in that respect has been assisting in supporting the reduction in emissions, but it is a fair question to ask whether it is necessary as an institution, and indeed it was the government’s policy to abolish it. We do not support government banks performing roles that can be performed by the private sector."
Ms Goward went further on Monday, telling Fairfax Media turbines' blades created pressure waves that "resonate in the skulls" of people living as far away as five kilometres. "I don't think we know enough about the impacts," she said. "It is something we should be prioritising."
Despite reassuring noises about large-scale renewable energy coming out of the new-look federal Coalition, and an increasing number of sympathetic state governments, the Australian wind industry is far from out of the woods.
“There are a number of people with health problems ... it is clearly not psychosomatic.” She argued that securing and protecting residents from the turbines' noise pollution was important. “They impact upon the landscape and have an immediate effect upon land value.”
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has appointed Australia’s first Wind Farm Commissioner to deal with complaints about wind farms, in a move which seems to have pleased few people.
The Environment Department has now asked until December additional information it sought about plants and animals on the Tablelands' site.
Australia's first wind farm commissioner has been appointed by the Turnbull government, with the former chairman of the telecommunications watchdog, Andrew Dyer, to take the role for three years. Mr Dyer's appointment comes as the government also established a scientific panel to "provide advice on the science and monitoring of potential impacts of wind turbine sound on health and the environment".
Nick Mooney has a specific research interest in the bird of prey and said he believed only about one-third of bird deaths caused by turbine strikes across the state were recorded. ‘‘[Some] of those eagles were found by accident, so it just shows you that the monitoring is essentially inadequate,’’ Mr Mooney said.