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Coal-fired Power Station To Close; Must Be Labor’s Fault!

If I condense the current Liberal government’s position on renewable energy into a single dialogue, it’d go something like this:

“There was a blackout in South Australia which just goes to show that these aggressive targets on renewable energy don’t give us energy security.”

“But wasn’t the blackout the result of the transmitters being blown over?”

“Exactly, if they weren’t so reliant on wind energy then the winds wouldn’t have been as strong.”

“And what do you mean by ‘aggressive targets’?”

“Well, various Labor state governments are setting 30 and 40% renewable targets when the national target is 23% by 2020.”

“After that?”

“We don’t have one.”

“Why not?”

“We don’t want one.”

“But Victoria recently had blackouts and they don’t have anywhere near the same reliance on renewables as South Australia.”

“Ah Victoria, they’ve just been responsible for the closure of the Hazelwood power station which’ll lead to all sorts of problems with energy security.”

“But the decision was made by a privately owned French company who said that they were getting out of coal world-wide and that it had nothing to do with the Victorian Government.”

“Well, they’re very diplomatic, those French people, they’d never criticise a foreign government.”

“And all the relevant bodies seem to think that there’ll be relatively minor rises in power bills and that any shortfall in power supply could be covered by getting power by NSW.”

“Nonsense, this’ll be just like the carbon tax which led to a complete shutdown of Whyalla and $100 lamb roasts. Anyone who doesn’t see acknowledge that is clearly biased.”

“Why do you say that?”

“Well, anyone disagrees with us is clearly biased. Like the ABC, the Solicitor-General, Gillian Triggs, the United Nations, Amnesty, Greenpeace, most of the Public Service…”

“Hang on, surely Victoria won’t need as much energy now that you lot shut down the car industry.”

We didn’t shut down the car industry. That was a decision made by private companies and nothing to do with us.”

Anyway, Hazelwood’s shutting and lots of people will be out of work. When people lose their jobs it’s always the fault of Labor, but when the same people still don’t have a job and the Liberals return in power then it’s because they’re too fussy or too lazy to start their own business.

Yep, it’s certainly hard to argue with their logic, but at least the Liberals occasionally show signs that they’re still on the same planet, even if they have no interest in looking after it. Ok, admittedly not all of them… Or possibly even most of them. But there are one or two that may be shaking their heads in disbelief that they’re in the same party as Cory Bernardi, Eric Abetz and George Brandis.

One Nation, on the other hand, are leading the space race by a significant margin. It was hard to know what to make of Senator (maybe) Culleton’s declarations on the High Court. (George Brandis got added to the above list for declaring that Culleton was “a decent person, he finds himself in the middle of this unwitting constitutional maelstrom.”) Apart from his apparent belief that he’d have the option of not taking any notice of the High Court, he made the rather strange announcement about what he’d do with a sheep. To quote the man directly:

“I’m not sure whether I’m gonna participate in any High Court jurisdiction and if I do I’ll simply go down, shear a sheep and take the belly fleece and stick it over my head and represent myself, because I’m a true Australian standing up for the Australian people.”

Perhaps it was something to do with the wigs that some members of the legal profession wear, but with One Nation senators, who can be sure?


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  1. Terry2

    Just when we were getting used to the Jobs ‘n Growth mantra, Sussan Ley comes out on Q&A and spoils it all by saying : “Governments don’t create jobs, governments don’t make it happen.”

    Get used to this rhetoric as the unemployment numbers start to spiral when the car industry closes down in next year.

  2. G~

    Just a small edit. Did you mean to write “a blackout it in” and “dipolomatic”?

    And I have to agree that this constant vitriol of; they did it, it wasn’t me, it was them before, during and afterwards, I wasn’t aware of it and I’m sure ALP did it, well, not because I know, but because they just did, ya know? It’s just the way it is, it’s their fault and always will be, because the LNP are a mature lot of earwigs and we NEVER lie and tell it as it is, ya know?

    What a bunch of over zealous gob smacking high school mongrels that are powered by nothing more than their BIG egos!

  3. Michael

    Anyone knows who built Hazelwood and when and the course of sale/s to present – was it also Labor?

    The Hazelwood Power Station is a brown coal-fuelled base-load thermal power station located in the Latrobe Valley of Victoria, Australia.
    Built between 1964 and 1971, the 1,600 megawatt capacity power station supplies up to 25% of Victoria’s base load electricity and more than 5% of Australia’s total energy demand.[1]
    It is a ‘subcritical’ pulverized coal-fired boiler.[2]
    The station was listed as the least carbon efficient power station in the OECD in a 2005 report by WWF Australia, making it one of the most polluting power stations in the world.[3]
    International Power plc purchased Hazelwood Power Station and the adjoining mine from the Victorian Government in 1996 with a 40-year life.
    In 2005 the Bracks Labor Government approved an environmental effects statement (EES) that allowed Hazelwood to move a road and a river to allow access to an additional 43 million tonnes of coal in addition to that allowed under the mining licence boundaries set at the time of privatisation.
    This was estimated to provide sufficient coal for the plant to operate to at least 2030.
    The EES also caps its total greenhouse output at 445 million tonnes of carbon dioxide over its life, after which point Hazelwood may be made to cease operation.
    Hazelwood is now jointly owned by Engie (formerly GDF Suez), with a 72 per cent share and Mitsui & Co. with a 28 per cent share.[4]
    As of 2014, Hazelwood directly employed over 500 full-time staff and at least another (full-time) 300 contractors, with hundreds more employed during scheduled major outages.[4]
    On 3 November 2016 Engie announced that the entire Hazelwood plant would be closed as of the end of March 2017

    Rossleigh, your article suggested to me another (perhaps we could all contribute) article on a comprehensive, 4 column, monty pythonesque, Clarke and Dawesque, compendium of (1) events/issues, (2) fault (default Labor, no exceptions), (3) how/why (4) real how/why (optional for rwfw).

    Would that be agile innovation or innovative agility?


  4. Jaquix

    Culleton is a clown, and obviously doesnt manage his personal affairs particularly well. . It was common knowledge at the time of the election (or immediately afterwards) that this theft charge was in play, also that an old company had failed owing 6 million. For Brandis to say this is unexpected is nonsense. Leigh Sales tried to get a straight answers out of him on 7.30, without much success, but I thought he did slip up a bit, re Day, he seemed to me to have said they “got advice and then senior advice” (Sales didnt pick up on it) which made me wonder if they got Gleesons advice first, but didnt like it, so then got some other advice (“senior”) hoping for better news, only to have Gleeson’s confirmed. As to Day, if his company “suddenly” owes 37 million, doesnt this suggest he must have been “insolvent” for quite some time.?

  5. Florence nee Fedup

    A station that well passed it’s used by date. One wonders why it was allowed in the first place.

  6. Florence nee Fedup

    Seems none of the coal power stations are running at full capacity, some closed down under Labor. Trouble is they are all past or coming near used by date.

    Something the anti renewable mob like to ignore.

  7. Florence nee Fedup

    The car industry along with tourist and other manufacturing didn’t survive the high dollar over number years cause by the mining boom.

    If Labor was successful in beating $20 million fund anti MRRT by miners, which was to be on super profits, to aid other industries during the mining boom, we would still have a car industry at least.

    Miners had no right to keep all the profits generated by the boom. They don’t own the ore in the ground. it belongs to the people.

    Abbott with his love of demolition of all that is Labor has cost this country dearly. History won’t be kind.

    The car industry, poor tourism and yes the asylum seekers that kept coming can be laid at his feet.

  8. Darren

    @Florence nee FedupNovember

    “One wonders why it was allowed in the first place.”

    The simple answer to that is “1964”. No one yet cared (except perhaps those living nearby).

  9. JeffJL

    Not forgetting Labor causing the power failures in WA around the same time.

  10. Rossleigh

    Thanks G-.
    Now fixed.

  11. Ria, Young

    Darren, I’ m not sure of my facts, so if I’m wrong I apologise. Back in those days we had a power station with 12 chimneys that blew out a lot of coal dust in Yallourn. This was replaced by an upgrade that had 4 chimneys, with less coaldust. Hazelwood was built around that time to generate the extra power that was needed. Yallourn power station was further improved with steam stacks. Morwell had a gas generating plant to supply Melbourne with gas, produced by by burning briquettes also manufactured in Morwell. This was later demolished after natural gas was discovered in Bass Strait, processed at Longford and piped to Melbourne and other parts of Victoria. Loy Yang came much later to increase the power generating capacity to provide Alcoa with electricity.
    To now ask why Hazelwood was ever built, the answer is simple. Known technology at the time, threat of global warning not even talked about at the time. Yallourn and Hazelwood genererated the base electricity for all of Victoria.

  12. crypt0

    The single dialogue at the start of article pretty much sums up the LieNP “position”.
    Copy it out and ask your Liebral friends for comment … should really show you just where they’re at !
    Thank you, Rossleigh.

  13. Freethinker

    Going by the “intelligent” comment by MP Craig Kelly regarding the cost of electricity, the renewable energy policies would drive up the cost of electricity, which meant public pools would raise the prices of swimming lessons and therefore fewer children would be taught to swim.
    So it appears that children drownings will also be the fault of the ALP and the Greens.
    How this individual managed to be in Canberra?!!

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