Articles filed under Energy Policy from Australia
Thank god the clean energy target is gone; it was just another version of the renewable energy target that involves massive subsidies for the intermittent renewable energy sector.
The government’s new plan will drop a clean-energy target proposed by Chief Scientist Alan Finkel in favor of forcing power companies to offer a set amount of reliable energy provided by coal, gas or even hydro, available to households at all times. While the plan would also require companies to offer low-emission energy, lawmakers said it would boost fossil generators until renewable energy output became more reliable.
Mr Abbott said that Australia needed to adopt “evidence-based policy rather than policy-based evidence” and questioned whether reducing emissions really was necessary to save the planet. “Our effort, however herculean, is barely better than futile, because Australia’s total annual emissions are exceeded by just the annual increase in China’s,” he said.
While sinking enormous financial resources into propping up renewable energy prospectors, national governments are providing no perceptible benefits to their citizens, writes Judith Sloan, a renowned Australian economist who has served on the Australian government’s Productivity Commission.
The key message from Josh Frydenberg is that subsidies for renewable energy are coming to an end. ...He does not rule out more subsidies explicitly, but the clear suggestion is that renewable energy generators are now at a point where they can stand on their own two feet.
Frydenberg set to drop clean energy target; Mr Frydenberg told the summit that emissions in the electricity sector had fallen over the last two quarters as a consequence of the closure of coal-fired power stations and flatlining demand, but said this could not continue if it made power less reliable or affordable.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
“The government is talking about using the Clean Energy Finance Corporation to subsidise a coal-fired power station,” he said. “We subsidise wind to make coal uneconomic so now we are proposing to subsidise coal to keep the lights on. Go figure.” “Wouldn’t it be better to abolish subsidies for new renewable generation and let ordinary market forces do the rest?”
Pushing ever more renewable energy into the national electricity network is negligent without new investments in energy storage, Malcolm Turnbull has declared, stepping up his attack on Labor's "complacent" and "ideological" clean energy policy.
Malcolm Turnbull has blasted Labor’s renewable energy “horror show” by seizing on blackouts in South Australia to warn of outages across the country under the “insanity” of Bill Shorten’s 50 per cent renewables target. ...“How many South Australians are worse off because of the Labor Left ideological approach to power? I tell you: every single one."
“It’s a demonstration that ad hoc state-based renewable energy targets have gone too far — when reliability can’t be maintained on a day the likes of which SA faces numerous times every single summer.” ...“It’s time Labor both federally and at a state level recognised its high renewable energy targets are putting at risk energy security and affordability.”
The snub to the 2020 Renewable Energy Target by one of the country's biggest business electricity retailers has revived calls for investment in new renewables projects to be halted and exposed the risk of the consequences for consumers of missing the goal. ERM Power on Tuesday revealed it had elected to pay a $123 million penalty charge to discharge its 2016 liability under the RET scheme, rather than backing renewables projects as intended under the RET regulations.
On Monday, deputy prime minister Barnaby Joyce refused to commit the government to maintaining the RET. Tony Abbott and South Australian senator Cory Bernardi have both publicly argued that renewable energy targets should be scrapped.