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Beyond the expected

The renewable energy industry is, unsurprisingly, interested in plans for a large scale solar facility

By kepayne 16 April 2012 45

solar power

This might be stating the obvious but the ACT Labor Government’s solar plan is receiving plenty of interest from the renewable energy industry, as Simon Corbell announced yesterday. Forty nine separate prequalification proposals were received, showing that the nation’s capital is keen to get started on a large scale solar facility.

“This level of interest from the renewable energy industry is clear evidence that the ACT Labor Government’s plan to make Canberra Australia’s solar capital is working, and is absolutely achievable” Mr Corbell said.

Though the closing date for proposals was the 10 April, twenty seven proposals are already being considered for the fast-track assessment stream. This efficiency, which is usually unheard of in government, shows just how serious ACT Labor is about renewable energy and sustainability for the future.

As Simon Corbell says:

“Solar has to be at the centre of any sustainable energy strategy in the ACT and it is the Labor Government that has a clear, legislated plan, to ensure that we move towards cleaner alternatives to power our city into the future.”

[Photo by Green Prophet1 CC BY 2.0]


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45 Responses to
The renewable energy industry is, unsurprisingly, interested in plans for a large scale solar facility
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Dragon 1:59 am 18 Apr 12

Martlark said :

Solar power comes free from the sun and so does coal free from the ground and oil free from under the desert and hydro free from the clouds. All you need to do to use any of these free resources is dig it up, collect it, drill it, or build a giant dam. Then send it somewhere to be burnt or used or descend through a turbine. Easy! Solar is no different then these other free resources that are just lying about. The problem is the storage and transmission of the electricity made by solar and how to deal with the night time, clouds and shadows that prevent smooth generation.

The distinction here is renewable vs non-renewable. Fossil fuels are non-renewable (in any practical sense). They required millions of years to form and we’re burning them up like there’s no tomorrow.
Renewables are the only way forward but it’s more than likely too late. Peak oil will bite soon, and I’d like to know how the global economy is going to function when it relies on constant growth supported by cheap and abundant fossil fuels. ‘Limits to Growth’ have it all well documented. The world will be a very different place as early as 2030.

OpenYourMind 10:42 pm 17 Apr 12

Even renewable energy studies have not been able to keep up with the plummeting cost of solar:
http://www.climatespectator.com.au/commentary/solars-super-price-cut

It isn’t inconceivable that not too far off and solar will reach price parity with grid power without subsidies. This will change the landscape dramatically.

As for those who say solar is unreliable, solar is about the most reliable source of energy you will find. Canberra’s sunshine per annum can be predicted with incredible accuracy.

Despite all of this, solar’s contribution to the grid in the forseeable future is small enough for daytime/nighttime differences in power generation to be negligible in the bigger picture of total power generation. Going into the future, the biggest challenge we will face won’t be generation of electricity, but rather storage of it.

Ironically, another green technology threatens to increase electricity demands markedly and that technology is electric cars.

Oh, and Diggety, do you honestly think Nuclear can ever happen in a Western country without Government protection/subsidies? Really? No private company can afford to take the kind of risks associated with nuclear. Just the liability insurance alone cannot be handled by private industry. Even in the US, the nuclear industry is underwritten by Govt insurance. This insurance is far from adequate as Fukushima has demonstrated. Fukushima cost may well exceed $1trillion. When I talk about risks, I don’t even need to talk about nuclear risks, but simply political risk of nuclear construction, risks in serious delays (for Oz, think Collins Class subs), hell we can’t even get a simple GDE bridge right.

Diggety 8:41 pm 17 Apr 12

HenryBG said :

Diggety said :

HenryBG said :

Diggety said :

The question I asked you before (why is it that renewables have not replaced our energy sytem?), ….

…is a question that reveals that the terms of this discourse are being dictated by the obvious vested interests.

Consider this scenario:

It’s the 23rd of November 1859. Charles Darwin is talking to his parish priest about his new book due to be published the next day.

“Your ideas are rubbish”, says the priest, “why is it that evolutionary biology hasn’t replaced our creationist system?”, he adds, displaying all the logic of a 21st-century apologist for the fossil fuel industry.

And when people asked Charles Darwin questions, he didn’t change the subject. He answered them.

I’m sure we can all agree we benefitted from that.

Why is it that fusion power hasn’t replaced our energy system?
Obviously, all research into fusion technology should cease forthwith.

Charles Darwin treated stupid questions with the contempt they deserved.

Think about asking logical questions in future rather than trying to air transparent rhetorical devices devoid of logic.

You’re talking about R&D, where the discussion is on a commercial large scale plant (well large for solar anyway).

Reread the story in full, along with Corbell’s announcement please.

milkman 7:52 pm 17 Apr 12

HenryBG said :

Diggety said :

The question I asked you before (why is it that renewables have not replaced our energy sytem?), ….

…is a question that reveals that the terms of this discourse are being dictated by the obvious vested interests.

Consider this scenario:

It’s the 23rd of November 1859. Charles Darwin is talking to his parish priest about his new book due to be published the next day.

“Your ideas are rubbish”, says the priest, “why is it that evolutionary biology hasn’t replaced our creationist system?”, he adds, displaying all the logic of a 21st-century apologist for the fossil fuel industry.

You realise Charles Darwin was a devoted Christian, right…?

HenryBG 7:29 pm 17 Apr 12

Diggety said :

HenryBG said :

Diggety said :

The question I asked you before (why is it that renewables have not replaced our energy sytem?), ….

…is a question that reveals that the terms of this discourse are being dictated by the obvious vested interests.

Consider this scenario:

It’s the 23rd of November 1859. Charles Darwin is talking to his parish priest about his new book due to be published the next day.

“Your ideas are rubbish”, says the priest, “why is it that evolutionary biology hasn’t replaced our creationist system?”, he adds, displaying all the logic of a 21st-century apologist for the fossil fuel industry.

And when people asked Charles Darwin questions, he didn’t change the subject. He answered them.

I’m sure we can all agree we benefitted from that.

Why is it that fusion power hasn’t replaced our energy system?
Obviously, all research into fusion technology should cease forthwith.

Charles Darwin treated stupid questions with the contempt they deserved.

Think about asking logical questions in future rather than trying to air transparent rhetorical devices devoid of logic.

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