Renewable energy needed to avoid climate change impacts


In light of 2013’s acknowledgement as Australia’s hottest year on record and the likelihood of more extreme weather we have already witnessed becoming the norm, Danny Caffrey weighs in to remind us of the importance of renewable energy in the mitigation of further and more damaging effects:   

In the recent heat waves, our electricity supply did not fail once due to lack of supply. With a growing population and no additional coal fired generation since the last big heat waves a few years ago when supply did drop out, the contribution from people’s rooftop solar cannot be underestimated. Nor can the growing feed in from wind farms.

Rooftop solar works best right at the time of peak demand and is keeping our electricity prices lower because the power lines and transformers of the grid do not have to be upgraded to cater for an average 6 hours of extreme demand a year. They have also prevented the need for new costly and greenhouse gas producing coal fired power stations. So much so, that there will never be another coal-fired power station built anywhere in Australia, as investors have got the message that these are risky investments because the cost of running them is going up and that of renewable electricity is falling all the time. Continue reading “Renewable energy needed to avoid climate change impacts”

Get off the coal train and on track with renewables, Denis!

Published by Quit Coal. View the original article.

flinders-st-banner-e1367821943759When Napthine stepped up to the plate after Baillieu’s swift and teary departure, we saw a glimmer of hope for a state that seemed doomed to a future shadowed by mountains of dirty coal. After all, Napthine’s electorate houses the biggest wind farm in the state and numerous times he has publicly lauded the benefits of wind energy.

Yet, only two months in office and Napthine has proved that he too is willing to trade away the state’s environment and the health of its residents for a future in bed with the coal industry. Continue reading “Get off the coal train and on track with renewables, Denis!”

Green jobs push in the Latrobe Valley

p8120518It goes without saying that Australia’s transition from polluting fossil fuels to clean, renewable energy sources will reshape the economy. Local towns on the frontline of  fossil fuel extraction and power generation will undergo dramatic changes. In Victoria, towns in Latrobe Valley are starting to adapt to a future without the coal industry.

While some will see the demise of coal as a problem, others see it as an opportunity. As Winston Churchill wisely noted, “A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.”

The Earthworker cooperative is a perfect example of Churchill’s thinking in action. The coalition of unions, environment groups and church groups intends to build a solar hot water manufacturing plant in the Latrobe Valley. The coop seeks to create an economic opportunity for the region as it winds down the coal sector.  Continue reading “Green jobs push in the Latrobe Valley”

Buninyong wind farms forum

Last night the Democratic Labor Party Senator, John Madigan, convened a forum on wind farms in the town of Buninyong, just outside Ballarat. About 120 people attended. The meeting was called, ostensibly, to gather responses to the recommendations of last year’s Senate Inquiry into the Social and Economic Impact of Rural Wind Farms. Madigan promised to represent the views expressed in parliament, and to push for the recommendations of the Inquiry (see below) to be finally implemented. As it turned out, no-one present disagreed with the recommendations of the inquiry – not the woman from WestWind who attended, not us, … Continue reading Buninyong wind farms forum

‘new wind farm planning laws has “driven a nail in the coffin” of plans to establish green manufacturing in the Latrobe Valley’

Nail in the coffin: Mighell This article comes from the Latrobe Valley Express, journalist: JARROD WHITTAKER THE introduction of restrictive new wind farm planning laws has “driven a nail in the coffin” of plans to establish green manufacturing in the Latrobe Valley, Victoria’s state’s top electrical unionist has warned. Electrical Trades Union Victorian secretary Dean Mighell said restrictions introduced by the Baillieu Government, which restrict where wind farms can be located, would drive renewable jobs interstate. “It kills real prospect of establishing those jobs we think should be established in the Valley, on the back of what we did with … Continue reading ‘new wind farm planning laws has “driven a nail in the coffin” of plans to establish green manufacturing in the Latrobe Valley’

Renewables jobs for the Latrobe Valley

The following article from the Latrobe Valley Express reports on the Morwell launch of Earthworker’s 100,000 Australians campaign. Hot water to boost jobs BY JARROD WHITTAKER 01 Aug, 2011 LATROBE Valley residents will have an opportunity to purchase a stake in their future following the launch of an innovative campaign to establish a solar hot water factory in Morwell.The Earthworker Cooperative plans to establish the solar hot water factory in Morwell and last week launched its 100,000 Australians Campaign aimed at gaining financial backing for the project. The campaign, which was launched in Morwell last week, seeks to find 100,000 … Continue reading Renewables jobs for the Latrobe Valley

Manufacturing co-op to “work our way out of the climate emergency”

August 11: Over a hundred community supporters, environmentalists and trade unionists assembled on the steps of Trades Hall in Melbourne to launch the 100,ooo Australians campaign. A project of the Earthworker co-operative, the campaign is seeking to build a cooperatively owned solar hot water system factory in Morwell. The project is hoping for 100,000 Australians to join the Earthworker Cooperative at $20 per member to raise the $2 million needed for the “Eureka’s Future” factory machinery, fit-out and finish in Morwell. The factory is to produce the Everlast tank, solar collectors and associated components, a unit which Earthworker explains is … Continue reading Manufacturing co-op to “work our way out of the climate emergency”

How far is 2km? Across the coalmine!

If you stand on Fraser Avenue at the back of Anglesea, you can’t see the coal mine that is a few hundred metres to your north. It’s behind the low coastal scrublands and of course, a big hole in the ground is hard to notice until you stumble right upon it. But it’s undeniably there. If you live in Anglesea, there might appear to be little you can do about the coal mine and power station. It has been there since 1961, and owner Alcoa is seeking a 50 year extension of it’s original lease and an extension of the … Continue reading How far is 2km? Across the coalmine!

Setting price will create ‘34,000 jobs’

From The Age, Adam Morton. Some key quotes: The new jobs would be concentrated in the state’s Western District, central highlands and the Mallee. More than 1500 jobs created in wind and geothermal energy in the south-west around Warrnambool, Portland and Hamilton. ■ Nearly 1200 new jobs relating to building and running large-scale solar plants in the Mallee. ■ About 600 new jobs in wind in the central highlands around Ballarat and Bendigo. Setting price will create ‘34,000 jobs’ February 28, 2011 A CARBON price aimed at cutting greenhouse gas emissions by 25 per cent by 2020 could help create … Continue reading Setting price will create ‘34,000 jobs’

Where to for Geothermal now the election is over?

The following is a report from Peter Gardner, who ran as an independent in the seat of Morwell in the state election. A key focus of his campaign was to generate awareness of the massive geothermal resource under the Latrobe Valley. At this point it is not known what the position of the Coalition will be on this potential source of low carbon energy. PRESS RELEASE 3.12.10 Summary of campaign for geothermal Energy under the coal The prospect of exploiting the geothermal energy under the coal was made an issue by Independent candidate for Morwell Peter Gardner. In his campaign … Continue reading Where to for Geothermal now the election is over?