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The Crash Test Dummy speeds up: our Renewable Target is 16% and rising, so are our electricity prices

The Renewables Lobby subsidy and handouts are still growing. In 2018, Australia must get 16% of all our electricity from “renewables”, up from 14.2% last year.

That’s 28,000 Gigawatt hours of magical green electrons from generators that give us nice weather as opposed to generators that cause droughts, floods, cyclones and spread crocodiles, dengue fever, cause wars and change butterflies.

Welcome to modern Australia where our grid is designed by witchcraft, run by superstition, and panders to every whim of the Giant Renewables Industry Lobby.

The noose tightens in Australia.

Renewable Energy Target, Australia, RET, Graph. 2018.

Renewables must supply 16% of our electricity in 2018, and even more in 2019.

Source: 2001-2030 Annual Targets and renewable power percentages, Clean Energy Regulator.

Prices are rising too: Could there be a connection here?

Even the ABC now says “Something has gone terribly wrong with our electricity prices”. Prices went off the ranch from 2007, rising much faster than the CPI. This is also the point Australia started ramping up the intermittent renewables. Before that the Snowy Hydro Scheme –the only reliable and cost effective form of renewable power — had been operating for decades. Correlation is not causation, but it’s true to say we had cheap electricity when we didn’t have much wind and solar.

Australian Electricity Prices, 2018, CPI, Graph.

Australian Electricity Prices, 2018, CPI, Graph.

Many of the costs of intermittent power are hidden. They risk grid stability, require longer transmission lines, more expensive gas and diesel back up to cope with faster ramp rates, they drain our hydro dams, use up good farmland, need storage and batteries, billion dollar interconnectors, plus higher costs to stabilize frequencies, they drive out the cheapest operators, which changes the bidding pattern (see the bid stack here). They also “require” an ongoing subsidy of $80/MWh.

Turnbull and Frydenberg say they want a technology neutral scheme. So let’s start by axing the RET.

The Chinese are laughing at us.

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