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 Andrews begins to stir—and stir he will with this madness!

05.05.21.  Where has Xi Dong Dan been hiding? Not under his bed because that where where China’s ‘biff’ squad are waiting to settle the score—you know, the Belt and Road scam that government recently kicked down that road like an empty beer can. While Dan Andrews tries to control his wicked empire via remote control the door to his secret mode of administration is being kicked in to find the throne empty. As the now common ploy of “I’m sick so don’t pick on me” wears thin, Andrews has come up with a big winner that he thinks will have him galloping into Melbourne on a great white charger and welcoming throng paves the way with rose petals. Not quite Mr Andrews!
Victoria has announced its intent to go much further than the federal government in requiring the substitution of renewable energy for the much cheaper and more secure energy that is provided from its endless supplies of high-quality brown coal.  Compared with the national policy of reducing emissions by 26 to 28% by 2030, Victoria is opting for a 45 to 50% reduction. Not only does this introduce another variation on what should be a national energy policy but it consigns Victoria to further losses of industrial competitiveness and households to higher energy costs.

Source: Alan Moran for Spectator

Higher prices, lower competitiveness as Daniel Andrews goes it alone on emissions

Victoria’s intervention in the energy markets is long-standing. The state’s brown coal reserves have formed the basis for its electricity generation for 60 years. Gradually that generation became to be seen as a means of providing jobs and the union-controlled power stations degenerated into overmanned and unreliable sources of electricity.  Costs to the consumer were high.
To its credit, the socialist Kirner government in the late 1980s recognised something was wrong, perhaps forced to do so in the context of an economic crisis. That government went about downsizing the staffing of the generators and employment in the generators was reduced by about 12,000 from the previous levels of 25,000. Strapped for funding the Kirner Government also brought in private ownership for a new generator (Loy Yang B).
But it took the Kennett government to finish the job in privatising the industry and reducing employment to a lean 2,500 strong workforce, a reduction that also brought about vast improvements and reliability of the plants. A similar situation was seen with gas where the government’s Gas and Fuel corporation was massively overmanned and the unions effectively controlled the business. This also was reformed and privatised by the Kennett government of the 1990s.
But with ALP governments under Steve Bracks, John Brumby and Dan Andrews ruling over most of the past 22 years, the system has again become high cost. Whereas Victorians should, as they once were, be enjoying the lowest electricity prices in the world, prices are among the highest.

The latest government measures are billed as leading the rest of the country.   They continue the Victorian ALP tradition of the past 20 years with attacks on brown coal and subsidies to renewables.  These have included:
• Funding campaigns to prevent new coal seams being used
• Introducing with the Victorian Renewable Energy Target an additional subsidy to those offered by the Commonwealth for wind and solar
• Subsidising the building of wind turbine factories that promptly went bankrupt
• Dan Andrews tripling the coal royalty, an event that may have been the straw breaking the back of the Hazelwood Power Station which closed in 2016, amidst assurances from the Premier that there would be a negligible price effect (wholesale prices thereupon doubled!)
• Purchasing agreements by the state for additional supplies of renewable power.
Not only do these measures adversely impact the profitability of brown coal stations but they have also meant substituting the more reliable power that coal brings.  Exchanging this for wind/solar means additional expenditures to manage these variable supplies and new spending on transmission lines to gather their more dispersed generation sources. All of these additional costs are paid by the Australian electricity consumer and the taxpayer.  The costs are also driving out major industrial users, with the pride of the state’s industry, the aluminium smelter at Portland, only being kept afloat by subsidies to counter the costs that other subsidies are bringing.
The amount of wind and solar in the system is even requiring the market managers to force roof-top facilities – all of which were built with subsidies – to be turned off at the increasingly frequent times when their supply threatens to bring down the whole electricity supply system.  Just another piece in the crazy jigsaw governments have created in their energy policies.
Alan Moran is with Regulation Economics.  He has published widely on electricity supply systems including the Australian chapters in five international compendiums on energy policies.

Video source: Sky News

{ 10 comments… add one }
  • Ian 05/05/2021, 7:27 am

    This article raises the issue of cost, the real problem is not the cost. It’s the availability of reliable power that’s the problem.

    The people accept that a wind turbine will generate an average of 30% of it’s stated capacity. They understand that solar will generate an average of around 20% of it’s stated capacity. The people have been lead to believe that if you need 1GW of power, then all you need to do is install around 3GW of wind turbines or around 5GW of solar, (or a combination of the two). This is NOT true. We regularly go days without any wind capable of generating electricity and every night we have have no solar power.

    It’s NOT the average that matters, it’s the fact that you can’t take the power when you want it. Tell the people how they are going to run the air conditioning on a hot summer night when the wind isn’t blowing. Tell the people how they are going to use the lift at work on a cloudy, windless day. Tell the workers involved in heavy industry what happens when the smelters go without power for 12 hours each night. Tell the shoppers what happens to the frozen foods when the fridges go off for a couple of hours each night.

    Only government think that this intermittent power is a good thing. Why, because they will get paid no matter what happens. The rest of us just get taken for a ride. And taxed just a little more.

    Higher prices and blackouts are coming. Change the government before it’s too late.

    • wal1957 05/05/2021, 9:24 am

      Agreed Ian.
      The truth is that the public have been brainwashed into believing that ‘unreliables’ are reliable and generate more and more power and the old fossil fueled generators are breaking down or closing down because they are not cost effective. Nothing could be further from the truth.
      The lame meejia and politicians are 100% guilty for this whole mess.

    • Disgruntled 05/05/2021, 9:56 am

      Ian; I agree with what you say but?? Change the government before it’s too late.:: How do we do that? and if we can then what do we change to?? These days one is just as bad as another!

      We just have to grow old and take our teaspoon of cement and “suck it up princess”. So it seems!

      • Ian 05/05/2021, 12:45 pm

        A party that provides a credible option to the green dream will get a lot of votes. It’s not hard to see that the Oz public do not want to pay a cent for this crap, especially since china is blowing CO2 from every orifice and issues press releases stating that renewables don’t work for them.

  • luk1955 05/05/2021, 8:40 am

    The higher prices are designed to be removed from our bank accounts and transferred to large companies, affecting the middle and lower classes the most. The upper middle class or rich elites see no effect on their budgets. Had the Cain and Kirner governments not spent Vic into bankruptcy we the taxpayer would still have control of these powerplants, received economical rates while efficiencies improved, and be competitive and we would not be cold in the winter. I don’t mind summer heat but loathe the cold days when the temp drops below 20 deg.

  • Penguinite 05/05/2021, 8:52 am

    Message to Scomo and Co! Stop this Andrews madness by stopping the subsidies on solar, wind and batteries! IF Andrews/Victorians want to install these useless alternatives to coal and EV’s Andrews should be forced to ask Victorians. If they respond in the affirmative Andrews can legitimately levy them rather than the whole country subsidising Victorians! Australia has already paid a high price for his border closures and economic/shut-downs hari-kari!

  • Lorraine 05/05/2021, 9:12 am

    We know it we have fools in Government, they are sure they can stop the virus . Climate Change and zero emissions close coal power and its done. Buy EV cars and its done…..thank goodness in my small town if I need stuff I can walk to the shops, and home delivery is free at present. I am retired ,,,,,,,,,,,the young ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, well God help them ,as the government won’t

  • Sir Peter 05/05/2021, 9:15 am

    Army. Victoria. Martial law. Trial. Firing squad.
    Dictator Dan is a CCP agent and a traitor and must be removed

    PS. Trial an extravagance

    • Ian 05/05/2021, 12:41 pm

      I’ve said it before and I meant it.

      The firing squad team has to be selected by a lottery. Like a lot of others, I want a chance to pull the trigger, there is no way I’d let this task be gifted to an undeserving public servant.

  • Sir Peter 05/05/2021, 2:29 pm

    The chicom plague has revealed what an incompetent bunch our politicians and bureaucrats are. Shit floats.

    We have a huge parasitic class by international standards, and for some while it has been the main driver of ’employment’ growth in Australia. Whole departments need to be axed – EVERY ONE related to SJW goals for starters; Womens Affairs, Multiculti Affairs and their ilk must go, vanish.

    All duplicated departments must also disappear. Why do we have a FEdeRAL Education Dept which teaches nobody?

    ALL others departments must be compelled to halve their numbers, starting at the top and working down. If you’re not at the coalface actually providing the goods or services which justify your department’s existence, you should have to convince the razor gang why you should not be sacked immediately.

    All ‘diversity and inclusion’ positions must be abolished. Any department which does not do so must be defunded until they comply.

    One of the many disasters created when that Labor idiot John Dawkins put a university on every street corner is that we have millions of half-educated morons who think they are entitled to a cushy ‘job’. They feel that practical skills or physical labour is beneath them. Meanwhile we have to import technical people and agricultural labour, which Australians are quite capable of doing. When I was a student I worked my arse off as a fruit picker (and eventually foreman) for 2 months every year, and could support myself and run a car for the rest of the year.

    Wake up Australia!!

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