Dispatch from SA: Frontline of the renewable energy transition

1381651_10152026947563109_876129434_nSouth Australian Yes 2 Renewables contributor,  Dave Clarke, visited the Snowtown wind farm extension last week. Here’s a quick dispatch from the frontline of the renewable energy transition:

I didn’t realise until recently how big the Snowtown wind farm expansion is in comparison to what is already around the place. Something like 20 of the 90 new turbines are already in place.

At the end of 2012 total installed wind power in Australia was 2576MW. This project, Snowtown 2 at 270MW, will increase that amount by more than 10 percent. It will increase the amount of installed wind capacity in South Australia by 25 percent (from 1073MW to 1343MW).

And not a word of objection to it!

Interesting how the local people seem generally to be quite happy with those South Australian wind farms that were built before about 2010. Snowtown Stage 1 was completed in 2008.

South Australia is the national leader when it comes to renewable energy.

According to the Australian Energy Market Operator, the state has enough installed renewable energy capacity to meet 31 percent of demand without climate changing carbon emissions (27 percent wind, 4 percent rooftop solar).

South Australia’s leadership position is set to continue as recent analysis shows it speeding towards a massive 50 percent renewable energy within a decade. It’s no wonder then that the Victorian Labor party has stated its intention to use the South Australian model as a guide.

In an interview with The Standard–the one where Labor promised to “rip up” Baillieu’s brown tape–shadow planning minister Brian Tee pointed to South Australian policy for what might replace the anti-wind farm laws. Victoria’s renewable energy sector has been unnecessarily stalled by the current planning arrangements, which are the world’s toughest restrictions for wind farms.

South Australia has shown what’s possible with a renewable energy. Thankfully, it’s only a matter of time before Victoria follows suit.

8 thoughts on “Dispatch from SA: Frontline of the renewable energy transition

  1. What Sarah said. South Australia is a guiding light regarding renewables and illustrates the hypocrisy and shortsightedness of the current federal government who appears not to accept the science underlying concerns about climate change, or the value of renewables. Meanwhile our myopic Victorian State government is trying to make dirty coal slightly cleaner at great cost and doubtful benefits to the Victorian taxpayer – yet these same politicians rail against subsidies for renewables. It’s Alice in Wonderland stuff and would be funny if the dire need for clean energy and meaningful action against AGW wasn’t so serious.

  2. I haven’t seen TCW posting here lately, has she been banned? I’d really like a couple of answers to the question of how many turbines she expects to be able to see from her property when the Yorke Peninsula project goes ahead.

  3. The short answer is none, because it won’t go ahead.

    If it did happen to get approval and someone was silly enough to buy the project, when the current proponents put it up for sale, then find someone even sillier to finance it, considering the fact that they will create the potential to get their arses sued off them, I would be able to see approximately thirty turbines from where I live.


    1. TCW; So we are to take it that you having to be able to see thirty turbines from your place is more important than reducing greenhouse emissions by over a million tonnes per year? You have objected that I have suggested that there is NIMBYism in the opponents of the Ceres project. Curious.

      Do you not care about the future that our children will have to live in? Perhaps you have no children, so it doesn’t worry you.

  4. DKC, take it how you want, you won’t take any notice of anything I say, I was merely answering BD’s question. I have never said that aesthetics is the reason we we are opposing the Ceres Project, there are many other more important reasons than that, as I have told you on numerous occasions, but you obviously weren’t listening. However, thirty turbines would be a little more imposing on the skyline, than one mobile phone tower in Crystal Brook.

    Reducing greenhouse emissions by one million tonnes per year is purely speculation, that depends entirely on how much the wind blows and how much power the turbines produce, You make no allowance for the mining of the raw materials for their manufacture, the manufacture of them, the transport, construction, the power they need to function when the wind doesn’t blow, the 140,000 litres of oil per year, that is needed for the gearboxes and so on. I haven’t even mentioned the backup power that is needed when the wind stops blowing.

    Maybe you should read these articles.



    Yes, I do care about the future, but the Ceres Project is not going to make one scrap of difference to it, if anything, it could even create more greenhouse emissions than it will save.

    If this is the big picture, then wind power is a total non event and not worth the problems it is creating. The Ceres Project has already divided the Community and created a lot of anguish, to the extent that even some of the hosts are saying they wish it would just disappear.

    You say you care about the future, but what are you actually doing about it DKC? You have spent years writing hundreds of pages on your blog, writing to newspapers all over Australia, making doomsday predictions, calling people climate change deniers, abusing people for opposing ridiculous ideas that were used seventy years ago, wind power was not efficient then and it is not now, at least then with wind power, they used batteries for storage. You say you are shining a light on liars etc., etc., but you have done absolutely nothing to make that light shine.

    For all of the time you have wasted, you have not made one iota of difference to greenhouse emissions or climate change. You would be far better off to go and do something positive, like planting some trees, that would at least show you are serious about what you preach.


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