Cross-posted from Reneweconomy.
[Coalition] Senators Chris Back and Jonathon Duniam – were included in the dissenting report to the Senate inquiry into the resilience of electricity infrastructure in a warming world...In essence, the Coalition’s report was a collection of renewable energy myths that might have been collected from far-right anti-wind and climate denying websites:
“Energy generated by wind turbines do not reduce greenhouse gas emissions within the electricity sector by the amount claimed. In fact, there is some evidence that the addition of wind energy onto the grid actually increases carbon emissions.”
“It is a legislated requirement that 600 million renewable energy certificates (RECs) will be issued between now and 2031, adding a cost of at least $50 billion to power bills. This represents a significant wealth transfer to wind power companies from Australian power consumers and achieves no measurable benefit to the environment.”
This assumes that the 600 million RECs will all be traded at the current price of $80. They won’t, and it is ridiculous to suggest they would. There is every chance that with a surplus from 2020 as more wind and solar farms are built, they will have negligible value.
That the Coalition allows such palpable nonsense to be issued in its name is staggering. But the main source of their information seem to be from the notorious anti-wind campaigners and economic analysts Alan Moran and Brian Fisher, who the two Senators quote throughout their report.
And the fossil fuel lobby:
“With Australia emitting less than 1.5% of the world’s GHG’s, our greatest contribution globally may be to supply high energy, low polluting coal to the burgeoning economies of China and India as they transition their populations from subsistence living to middle class aspiration.”
But perhaps the greatest piece of idiocy and ignorance came in this following paragraph, relating to the proposed change of the 30 minute settlement period to a 5 minute settlement, to align with the dispatch period.
“Coalition Senators comment that the market price is currently averaged over 30 minutes. If generators were expected to jump on and off the grid every 5 minutes, the stability of the grid will be compromised. “
Are you kidding? That is pretty much what is happening now as the generators suddenly withdraw capacity to push prices within a short period and then flood the market with suddenly available capacity
“Many generators need more than half an hour to synchronise to the grid and have set forward contracts.”
Er, yes, and that would be why people are proposing 5-minute rules to encourage fast-reacting and even instantaneous responses from new technologies to take over from the dumb, slow moving machinery that currently dominates the grid. If you can’t respond in 5 minutes, don’t. And don’t expect to be paid for something you can’t do!
Indeed, the Coalition presumptions on coal and the whole energy debate appear to be based on the very same climate denial conclusions of Roberts. Even the highly conservative IEA concedes that solar will dominate the world’s electricity grid if climate targets are to be met.
The only circumstance where coal does remain dominant is if climate science is ignored – something that the Coalition has, for all intents and purposes, chosen to do in its first four years of government.