Australian power big Origin Power has taken the extraordinary step of placing out in opposition to a Information Corp commentary piece – below the title of “woke cowboy capitalists” – that accused it of rejecting affords to purchase or lease the Eraring coal generator it plans to shut early.
Australian conservatives, and the reactionary proper wing Murdoch media specifically, have had a tough time making an attempt to get their collective minds round the truth that the nation is transitioning from coal to renewables.
Since Origin’s resolution 10 days in the past to set a 2025 closure date for the two.,88GW Eraring coal generator, somewhat than 2032 (topic to union and staff’ settlement), the Murdoch media has been relentless in claiming it will push costs up and result in blackouts.
The choice by tech-billionaire Mike CannonBrookes and the Canadian asset administration big Brookfield to bid for AGL Power, and likewise search an accelerated closure of its remaining coal fired mills, has solely elevated their angst and intensified the scare marketing campaign.
Peta Credlin, the Sky Information host and The Australian columnist who was chief of workers when Tony Abbott was prime minister, took purpose in opposition to each Origin and Cannon-Brookes in a chunk entitled “Beware power of the woke cowboy capitalists.
Credlin claimed that Origin had rejected affords from the state authorities to promote or lease the Eraring coal generator.
Origin says that declare is fallacious.
“Origin didn’t obtain, nor did it reject, any provide to purchase or lease Eraring,” it stated in a letter to The Australian newspaper, and which it printed on its media web page.
“Origin engaged in in depth, and constructive, session with the state authorities over many months to discover varied choices for the plant’s future, nonetheless no settlement could possibly be reached with each events finally comfy that new capability coming on-line is anticipated to greater than compensate for Eraring’s exit.
“We acknowledge not everybody will agree with our proposed new timeline for exiting coal-fired technology, nevertheless it displays the quickly altering Nationwide Electrical energy Market as extra renewables enter the market, impacting on the demand for baseload energy.”
Credlin’s article claimed that “it’s inconceivable to cut back emissions drastically whereas holding the lights on 24/7 as a result of wind and solar energy are low-cost solely when the wind blows and the solar shines.”
Which, in fact, can be nonsense. South Australia has proven how emissions will be slashed, and coal changed by wind and photo voltaic, and fuel consumption lowered to. It’s having fun with a 62 per cent share of wind and photo voltaic in its grid and is effectively on the way in which to 100 per cent renewables.
The Australian Power Market Operator, in its Built-in System Plan, outlines how the entire major grid can shift to 100 per cent renewables, decrease costs and preserve reliability.
Credlin’s subsequent statement was correct, even when it was unpalatable to conservatives and their mates within the fossil gas trade: “An excessive amount of intermittent, weather-dependent energy damages the economics of baseload energy, particularly from coal.”
Which is why conservatives have sought to cease wind and photo voltaic in its tracks, throughout Abbott’s reign and thru present power minister Angus Taylor, who has repeatedly moaned there’s “an excessive amount of wind and photo voltaic” within the grid.
Be aware: Woke refers to being conscious or effectively knowledgeable in a political or cultural sense. Conservatives suppose possessing this data and consciousness is a really, very unhealthy factor. In order that they use it as an insult.
Giles Parkinson is founder and editor of Renew Economy, and can be the founding father of One Step Off The Grid and founder/editor of the EV-focused The Driven. Giles has been a journalist for 40 years and is a former enterprise and deputy editor of the Australian Monetary Evaluation.