JoNova

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Renewable bandaid burns money: New transmission line alone costs as much as new advanced Coal Plant

Humelink map

The Humelink transmission line does not connect a single large city.

Just another hidden renewable subsidy.

Boy O boy, that bill blew out fast:

Households could be up for $2b electricity transmission cost blowout

Peter Hannan, Sydney Morning Herald

Transgrid now expects its proposed HumeLink – a 500-kilovolt line connecting Wagga Wagga, Bannaby and Maragle – to cost $3.317 billion, up from $1.35 billion estimated in January 2020. That would make it “by far the most expensive transmission project” in Australia, said Bruce Mountain, director of the Victoria Energy Policy Centre…

NSW Households will be forced to pay $60 per year above their already-inflated-costs whether they want renewable energy or think windmills are a bird-killing, shamanistic health-hazard that won’t stop storms, floods or droughts any better than crystal shields do.

We can see why the government won’t let people choose to buy green power voluntarily.

Transgrid said the steel and materials costs more, but wow, golly, there was also a bill for “environmental offsets” through the Kosciuszko national park of an eye-watering, wait for it, $935 million. Perhaps they are transplanting the trees they cut down, and rehoming the eagles?

The new transmission line will decrease the property value of houses nearby but make it “economic” for wind and solar plants to operate. Remember costs are for consumers, profits are for the unreliables industry.

Welcome to Renewables-World where we spend $3.3b to get half a billion in benefits:

HumeLink claimed in its submission to the Australian Energy Regulator in July that the project would have a net benefit of $491 million for consumers. That sum excluded a price on carbon emissions avoided from fossil fuel plants and gains created in regional towns from the major construction.

Since cutting carbon emissions is a net loss (less fertilizer for crops) the gains in regional towns amounts to paying people to bury bottles of cash.

Even Snowy Hydro is not impressed, with a spokesman saying:

“Why would Snowy Hydro pay for transmission lines that connect 20,000 megawatts of wind and solar to close to 12 million Australians?” he said, referring to Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide users.

Another transmission line through Victoria — VNI-West (formerly KerangLink), will connect Ballarat to Wagga and has also had costs blow out from $2.4 billion to $4 billion.

Obviously all that money could have been spend on a new advanced ultra supercritical coal plant (or two) with a tiny environmental footprint, no need for mega transmission lines, pumped dam storage, stabilizers, or synchronous condensers and they could have produced continuous cheap electricity for 70 years or until nuclear fusion reactors make them outdated.

Japan is building 45 HELE coal plants Australia is building none, even though they might reduce emissions by 15 – 50% and have none of the problems and costs that plague the unreliables.

As I said in 2017:

“Japan needs to import 95% of its energy. Australia is the [second] largest exporter of coal in the world, and has the largest known uranium resources in the world, but we voluntarily wear a hair shirt to appease GAIA. We sacrifice our cheap energy advantage for fear that loud ill-mannered people who are bad at maths will call us selfish and uncaring.”

*Typo half a million should be half a billion. corrected.  h/t melbourne resident. Apologies!

 

 

 

 

9.9 out of 10 based on 98 ratings

214 comments to Renewable bandaid burns money: New transmission line alone costs as much as new advanced Coal Plant

  • #
    Graham+Richards

    There is talk of a change in Labor party policies encouraged by Joel Fitzgibbon. He’s going to be leaving politics soon he says. I wonder if he’s given any thought to joining the LNP as a consultant for much needed change. Who knows, I might even be tempted to vote again should he by some remote chance be successful!!

    300

  • #
    Enthalpy

    We need to understand, logical rational thinking (LRT) has been used here, just not for the benefit of the the people who vote, but the benefit of the people who control our politicians.

    I n this way, what seems totally illogical, unreasonable and unworkable from basic laws of physics and economics becomes a feature of the program and the brightest indicator we have of the corruption in our government.

    450

    • #
      Doc

      Our biggest problem comes via the type of people we elect these days. Traditionally, they are supposed to run and protect the nation for the nation’s benefit. Today, a great number of them, especially of the ‘progressive’ leaning, the left and the greens are attempting – with great success – to assign our governance to foreign-run bodies such as the UN and EU, and soon probably to Biden’s USA as well. They don’t even consider what basic facts, truths, and
      designs back those foreign demands.

      They demand civil obedience to new laws they promulgate. Debate about the science or whatever else they decide upon, is totally forbidden under pain of severe personal retaliation to anyone that so dares. That’s in our so called Democracies/ If non-democracies refuse to cooperate, they get free passes, capture payments from the democracies by being classified as ‘developing’ despite having the second largest economy, having the most modern and large armed forces, place satellites in space and land on the moon and Mars!

      Now if people can’t see the incongruity of all this, and wonder what lies behind it all when it is so destructive to just the democracies while the other side that threatens those same democracies actually benefits from this stuff, then I need to go into the desert for 40days to learn ‘proper’ thinking.

      Democracies cannot survive this stuff where they submit without a whimper to the latest thoughts and opinions that come out of Europe and never try to put the entire chaos they are experiencing into some form of context. The USA, with government inaction at best, and support at worst, is having its entire history blackened, its society threatened using division based on the very multiculturalism the left was formerly the ardent supporter of. With Biden going rabid pro climate action, it is being torn asunder from within and without.

      80

      • #
        Enthalpy

        Well spotted Doc

        And there we see the chink in our democracy. We the people do not elect our representatives!! We get to vote for representatives that have already been selected for us, by whichever party machine we choose to support. And, I am absolutely certain the preselection process is absolutely pure and we get the best possible representatives chosen /sarc

        So you see, in Australia they do not need to rig the ballot boxes or votes, the rigging happens well before the election and the laws made suit the few at the expense and misery of the many

        60

        • #
          Deano

          I believe the Chinese communist system allows party members to ‘vote’. They just get to select the preselected approved candidates. Our system isn’t much better as you point out.

          P.S. I just realised a word in your original post has an unfortunate connection to my example! Sshhhhhh.

          10

  • #

    In the UK, by definition,wind farms tend to be in remote upland areas. The very places where there are not transmission lines.these are hugely expensive to build to population centres will often be unsightly and where it goes through an especially beautiful or protected area the cables have to be buried under ground .

    These are costs that are often hidden and the damage to the landscape of the power lines is often not mentioned in planning applications .

    Mind you, this OZ power line seems to be very expensive for what it will do.

    360

  • #
    Lawrie

    Madness. We are governed by fools advised by idiots. How can Australia defend itself with these people at the controls and we laugh at Joe Biden. Angus Taylor should resign for promoting such stupidity.

    570

  • #
    Travis T. Jones

    Julia Gillard, 2009 (there will be no carbon (sic) tax under a government I lead) …

    2.34 sec: “Now I want to build the transmission lines that will bring that clean, green energy into the national electricity grid.”

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=n-HP00lxC30

    Thanks Julia.

    Also, 11 years ago Gillard talks of national health.
    She failed to anticipate Covid when sars-1 was rampant.

    220

  • #
    Graeme No.3

    I wonder what the new interconnector between Robertstown in SA and Wagga Wagga in NSW will wind up costing? Supposedly $2.3 billion but they’ve barely started.
    “Households are set to save $100 per year on their electricity bills when the critical SA-NSW interconnector is delivered, according to new modelling released by ElectraNet today” but then they talk of $6 extra this year and $11 next year.

    “Minister for Energy and Mining, Dan van Holst Pellekaan said the interconnector will shore up stability for South Australia’s energy grid for decades to come.
    “South Australian households have already seen an average $158 reduction in their electricity bills and with low wholesale prices, new energy projects coming into the market and the interconnector we are well on track to deliver our promised $302 savings in electricity bills.
    “This project will also unlock billions of dollars of investment, such as Stage 3 of Nexif’s Lincoln Gap and Neoen’s mammoth $3 billion Goyder South Project near Burra.
    The interconnector allows us to reach our net-100% renewables goal sooner, whilst securing our grid and delivering bill relief to South Australians”.
    There is also the $160 million spent by Electranet (SA Grid operator) on synchronous condensors to stabilise frequencies.
    Can anyone report lower electricity bills in SA?

    221

    • #
      Graeme#4

      Is 38c/kWh about right for SA domestic electricity? If yes, this places the cost as one of the world’s highest.

      210

    • #
      David Maddison

      It’s difficult to believe that politicians and their “modellers” can even believe their own BS. How is that even possible?

      170

      • #
        Lance

        Because YOU are paying for it and THEY bear no responsibility for it.

        What’s difficult to believe is that the salaries, benefits, pensions, and assets of politicians are not held liable for their manifest mistakes.

        Want responsible outcomes? Make the polys personally responsible.

        250

      • #
        Doc

        What is the role of the Chief Scientist?

        10

    • #
      William

      Please just disconnect South Australia – let them sink or swim with their insane commitment to wind and solar. If it is has good as they claim, cut the wires between NSW and Victoria (not that they will be able to save SA as they will not cope this summer).

      180

      • #
        RickWill

        South Australia is now getting a high power link into NSW so NSW can take advantage of all that free energy.

        The EnergyConnect project will reduce household electricity bills in NSW by and average of $64 – Now that is funny!.
        https://www.projectenergyconnect.com.au

        If anyone took the time to add up all the projected savings from these random energy projects, the electricity producers would actually bepaying the consumers to use their electricity. That does happen in the wholesale market, usually around midday, but the gap between wholesale and retail seems to be every widening. I wonder why – could it be that free energy costs an AWFUL lot to collect and to deliver and is often not available when needed.

        Who could have predicted this shemozzle? Not Alan Finkel or the CSIRO – Australia’s brains trust! Where’s Audrey?

        60

  • #
    Peter Fitzroy

    I can find references to 25 new coal plants, but can not find a substantiating reference to the 45 claimed here. I did how ever find that in the same period, 100 older plants will be decommissioned.

    038

    • #
      Lance

      PF: In current post there’s a link, 2nd para from bottom, highlighted in Red:
      https://joannenova.com.au/2017/02/japan-building-45-hele-coal-plants-australia-1-maybe/

      Within that link is this link:
      https://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-01-31/japan-coal-power-plants/8224302

      Logical Thinking and Reading for Comprehension, Course 101.

      You’re Welcome.

      450

      • #
        Peter Fitzroy

        Substantive was the word I used Lance. Hint, look up the meaning of the word substantive, and you will find it does not mean self referential.

        There are no current plans build those 45, and according to Bloomberg, even the 25 number is looking ambitious, with several cancellations announce in the last 2 years.

        However I do understand that the past is a very pleasant place to live, and I hope you find it so. I prefer to keep up to date, so I won’t be joining you there.

        036

      • #
        Hanrahan

        China’s growth might come to a sudden halt and all sorts of plans may be shelved.

        I read today that the world’s largest property developer has had their rating downgraded by both Moodys and Fitch. Multi billion failure looming. China is NOT travelling well.

        20

      • #
        Brian+the+Engineer

        Must be right it’s the ABC

        00

    • #
      Boambee John

      What is the change in the gross power output available after the changes?

      70

      • #
        Neville

        G’day BJ, great to see you commenting at Jo Nova and the insanity just keeps going on and on.
        We’re already at NET ZERO in the SH but they still want to waste endless billions $ for a guaranteed ZERO return by 2050 or 2100 and beyond.

        160

      • #
        robert rosicka

        How much power output can anyone guarantee to get out of an intermittent generation source ? If sun isn’t shining and no wind it’s less than zero because wind turbines need power 24/7 although they don’t generate it 24/7.

        150

        • #
          Doc

          Read the labels that they sell these things on. It’s totally true and we see the hoopla from the buyers about how much they will put out! It’s not the fault of the manufacturers if the output can’t live up to its label, is it? After all, nature determines when the wind blows, the sun shines and what the weather and Climate will be! Doesn’t it????? So why put the b….y things up in the first place? Some might start thinking the whole deal is a great subterfuge that the masses of the great unwashed never think about. They are a painters blot on a beautiful landscape, and can be permanent skeletons due to the cost of renewal or removal.

          60

  • #
    Robber

    And there’s more! The cost of Snowy 2, another Bass Strait link, an SA-NSW link, and more multi-billion dollar batteries.
    All to support so called “cheap” unreliable power supplies.
    As of 7am this morning, to meet a demand of 22,300 MW:
    Solar 1,100 MW, Wind 2,100 MW, Hydro 2,900 MW, Gas 900 MW, Coal 15,300 MW.
    What will be the ultimate cost to replace that reliable coal?

    270

    • #
      Doc

      If I was Bill Leak I would draw a desert outback scene with plenty of flies and a bush humpy in the middle.
      Ashes to ashes and dust to dust.

      30

  • #
    clarence.t

    All that, just to allow the coal fired power stations to operate more economically !

    70

  • #
    Lance

    I wonder if they’ve included the corona losses (kW/km) for those transmission lines and factored that into the operational efficiency of this nightmare. As well, the RFI from the lines and any effects on communications. Likely not.

    60

  • #
    Peter Fitzroy

    Humelink according to Transgrid it is required as a integral part of Snowy 2, which explains why it is crossing one of the more environmentally sensitive national parks. It is that sensitivity which accounts for the cost of installing that infrastructure.

    039

  • #
    Travis T. Jones

    Protests break out in Europe as electricity prices soar

    “Depleted natural gas inventories and low wind speeds have led to a surge in electricity prices across Europe, putting pressure on governments as consumers protest against surging power prices ahead of the winter season.”

    https://oilprice.com/Latest-Energy-News/World-News/Protests-Break-Out-in-Europe-As-Electricity-Prices-Soar.amp.html?__twitter_impression=true

    You ain’t seen nothing yet.

    260

    • #
      Flok

      Ironic that if all these applications costs are going down in price, the cost of power keeps going up. EU is stuffed.

      “Increasing the renewables target to 40% by 2030 is ambitious but achievable. Technology advancements and cost reductions in wind and solar and storage mean that renewables is the most competitive form of electricity generation today,” said Ignacio Galán, Chairman and CEO of Iberdrola (IBE.MC), which develops renewable energy.

      https://www.reuters.com/business/environment/eu-unveils-plan-increase-renewables-share-energy-mix-40-by-2030-2021-07-14/

      20

    • #
      John F Hultquist

      Usually followed by {and engraved on the tombstone} – –
      Hold my beer.

      30

    • #
      Doc

      Those rabid global warming, anti-fossil fuel wonders can’t wait to get on that captivating Russian gas pipeline that Joe gave the go-ahead for. Hypocrits all! Yet we other democracies destroy ourselves as our governments are followers of the EU/UN AGW religion. Poor old Gaia must be turning in her throne, or grave or whatever.

      30

  • #
    el+gordo

    Transgrid ownership, Canadians are heavily involved.

    ‘Caisse de depot et placement du Quebec (25%) Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (20%) OMERS (20%) Utilities Trust of Australia (20%) Spark Infrastructure (15%).’

    60

  • #
    Geoffrey+Williams

    This cost for new transmission of billions of dollars for lines dedicated to a renwable source is an absolute disgrace. Totally unnecessary and totally unjustified.
    Unless of course you are a leftist greenie climate zealot.
    GeoffW

    260

  • #
    Graeme No.3

    The proposed renewable energy zone is being developed by Neoen over five stages. Goyder South (south of Burra) comprises the first three stages and Goyder North comprises the last two stages. Each stage is expected to include:
      a 400 MW wind farm
      a 200 MW solar farm
      a 300 MW battery storage, and
      suporrting infrastructure connections.
    Neoen intends to construct Goyder South – Stage One first due to its proximity to the Robertstown substation.

    February 2022 expected construction start of Goyder south Stage 1. (nicely timed for the next State election – expect the Premier in hi-vis with shovel on TV. I hope his holders have shown him how to handle it convincingly.
    August 2023 expected completion.

    The Lincoln Gap Windfarm is a 212MW wind farm project with 59 wind turbines and 10MW grid scale battery storage being developed by Nexif Energy Australia Pty Ltd, located approximately 15 kms west of Pt Augusta.(that means it is 320km from Adelaide – the major usage)
    Once completed, the project will provide power for over 155,000 homes (1.1kWh per house per day some of the time), will offset over 600,000 tonnes of CO2 every year of its operations providing clean green energy and employ up to 170 people.
    No mention of the amount of B.S. generated. (the CO2 savings are exaggerated by around 40%).

    130

    • #
      Graeme No.3

      That was supposed to be further to my post that seems to have dissappeared into the Mists of Mod.

      30

      • #

        And worth bearing in mind that all the figures are NAMEPLATE , so effectively 300% overstated,.
        …….and that batteries do not produce electricity…but actually consume it !

        90

  • #
    Serge Wright

    Deliberately providing false low cost estimates on renewables projects seems to be a modus-operandi for this industry. We saw the same thing with TurnBull’s 2.0 and now we see the same thing with these transmission lines to nowhere that will transmit unreliable power for less than half of the time. Just think on those calm winter nights where people are huddled up to the fireplace, those $3Bill transmission lines will be sitting idle. Seriously, we need a royal commission into this energy fraud industry.

    210

  • #
    Neville

    Good post Jo and the insanity just keeps going on and on.
    We’re already at NET ZERO over the entire SH but they still want to waste endless billions $ for a guaranteed ZERO return by 2050 or 2100 and beyond.
    OH and endless trillions $ for all the so called wealthy OECD countries and ZIP change to the weather, climate or temp.
    China, Russia etc must be throwing a party, because our dopey pollies and so called scientists can’t add up very simple sums.

    170

  • #
    Neville

    Again here’s the very simple WIKI graph for co2 emissions since 1970 or 1990.
    Note the soaring co2 emissions from China, India and other developing countries for the last 20 to 30 years.
    And ZIP increase for OECD countries, USA and EU.
    When will the donkeys WAKE UP.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_carbon_dioxide_emissions#/media/File:World_fossil_carbon_dioxide_emissions_six_top_countries_and_confederations.png

    70

  • #
    Lance

    3.3 Billion to transmit 20 GW of wind/solar that has a combined average capacity factor of about 0.25.

    So. That transmission system has a net economic efficiency of about 25%.

    In 20 months, the cost estimate has increased 245%.

    It isn’t clear if that 3.3 B is in current dollars or future dollars. A project of some 750 km total length would take about 10 years to complete, even if the environmental impact studies, land acquisition, permitting, bond issue, material acquisition, right of way clearing, concrete batch plant construction, etc all proceed parallel where possible.

    At 4.5% inflation over 10 yrs, the final cost could be well over 5 Billion. More if things get weird.

    Absolutely bloody brilliant. Where do I sign?

    190

  • #
    John

    Nuclear plants at existing coal-fired would be a no-brainer if one really wants to get rid of coal.

    The big advantage is that the infrastructure (e.g. transmission lines, water for cooling) are all in place.

    170

    • #
      clarence.t

      New USC coal plants replacing aging coal fired infrastructure, would be even better. !

      140

      • #
        PeterS

        It would be better still if we did both. New coal fired plants at each existing site together with a small nuclear power plant based on the new technology being rolled out. Of course it will never happen – too logical and too sensible for the decrepit government non-think of today.

        90

  • #
    RossP

    I know there are many engineers posting on Jo’s site.

    A question about costing (not this project, in particular). Why is it when engineering projects are proposed the estimated cost bares no resemblance to what it’s cost is said to be when it starts and that usually is well below the actual cost. It is not just Australia I’m talking about, it certainly happens here in NZ and elsewhere? I understand when a big project gets underway unforeseen problems can pop up but it is the initial costing “errors” that always get me. It is almost the case that when a project is proposed (especially public sector projects) and an estimated cost is given, you can automatically double that figure and we are closer to the real figure.

    110

    • #
      Graeme No.3

      An elephant is a mouse built on Government contracts.

      Once a project is started the Public “Service” throw money at it so it doesn’t get regarded as a failure, or worse get cancelled and people start asking questions – like “why are we employing these people”. In their defence they have to deal with politicians who want to have “achievements” so a monument that costs a monumental amount is acceptable.

      190

    • #
      Lance

      Good question, RossP.

      Usually it goes like this:

      Client: Tell me a cost for constructing a 750 km transmission line.
      Engr: Oh, between 1 and 2 Billion.
      Client: Ok. I’ll try to sell that to the govt.
      Client. Well, they went for the 1 Billion figure, when do we start.
      Engr: Whoa, buddy, I need a lot more information. Is the land flat, mountainous, what voltage, how many phases per tower, do you want lightning protection and digital metering / monitoring and control, does it cross any waterways or protected lands, how many substations and at what secondary voltages, do you want steel towers, wood poles, double bolted towers, how many crossarms, what switchgear is desired. Get back to me on that.
      Client: Well, we don’t know yet. Just give me a range.
      Engr: Ok. 2 to 5 Billion. More information gets better estimates.
      Client: We’ll just take the average and go for 2.5 Bilion.
      Engr: OK by me. Your project.
      Client: I’ll get back to you after the election.
      Client: Well, the voters were polled and we think we can get 2.5 Billion.
      Engr: OK. now answer the questions.
      Client: Got to cross 4 rivers, 30% is uphill 5% grade, 20% crosses protected habitat, and no access roads will be allowed, you have to use the right of way. We want 500 KV, but sold it to the public at 348KV. We’d like to have 5 substations, but can get along with 3. Oh. And HVDC would be great.
      Engr: Ok,HVDC is 500 Million per substation. 500KV is twice what 348 KV costs. Add 40% to cross those rivers. The mountainous areas cost 50% more per km. Restrictions on access add 10%. I’m thinking its gonna be closer to 4 Billion. Plus whatever you decide on voltages and EHVDC vs EHVAC. Let me know.

      Client: Tell you what. We’ll announce this at 3 Billion, call it a “comprehensive figure”, then later on, we can blame the cost over runs on greedy landowners, irresponsible and greedy utility companies, and new safety and environmental stuff. So let’s do that.
      Engr: OK. I just do the designs. You pay for the Change Orders. I don’t care where you get the money.

      And That, Ross, is how this really works.

      360

    • #
      Kalm Keith

      You know the answer.

      The costings are not done by engineers.

      70

      • #
        PeterS

        The cost would be 10 times more, mostly for good reasons but engineers do tend to over engineer things. I know as I worked with a few who were involved with the space shuttle projects. They are good at solving technical problems but the world doesn’t work that way. If the space shuttle was speced, designed and built purely by engineers it would be fantastic but it would also cost a lot more. It’s always about a compromise. However, these days it’s not even that. It’s more about focusing on the Great Reset at whatever cost in spite of the fact their solutions will be the worst kind at a higher cost. In other words, we end up with the worst of both worlds.

        30

        • #
          PeterS

          I meant to conclude: the way it’s done today is not a compromise, it’s in fact more akin to sabotage, which brings up back again to the real goal – destroy the West of old and replace with a new one based on a dream (actually nightmare) of a better and new world.

          30

        • #
          Lance

          No, I disagree. Engineers are given performance, space, weight, power, speed, response, durability, corrosion resistance, EMP hardening, maintenance cost, life cycle cost, Life Safety impacts, toxicity, , etc requirements to meet. They meet them with the materials and technology known at the time.

          That is why bridges have a 300% safety factor with 5 year inspections and an airframe has a 110% safety factor with weekly or daily inspection and maintenance.

          Yes, some things are compromises. But if you are in space, “oops” doesn’t cut it. Nor does “oops” mean much at 500 meters below surface in the ocean, or wondering if that cyrogenic hose or valve will break.

          It is the “cost accountants” and Managers and Politicians who screw up perfectly good designs.

          The best overall example of letting engineers do their job is the SR-71. It remains the ultimate in supersonic flight. That’s what happens when good people are allowed to do their best.

          122

          • #
            Kalm Keith

            You’ve given the “best” example of proper implementation of engineering.

            The best example of “outside interference” in essential design would have to be in the “cost saving” measures behind the various “unexpected” failures in Nuclear power plants. Nuclear reactors are safe when they incorporate all the specified design features and do not have their working lives “extended” beyond the engineered limit.

            But, as always, bureaucrats and politicians know best.

            They know where the money is.

            40

          • #
            PeterS

            I wasn’t referring to quality. I was referring to cost. Engineers tend to make things too good and so cost more than they need to, at least sometimes. That’s the real world we live in.

            20

        • #
          Harves

          I always marvel that engineers got a man to the moon in the 1960s in <10 years. Then when Obama announced that nasa was going back to the moon, it was going to take 18 years. 50 years of technical advancements have been offset 2-fold by 50 years of government bureaucracy and red tape.

          50

    • #
      RickWill

      Ross asked:

      Why is it when engineering projects are proposed the estimated cost bares no resemblance to what it’s cost is said to be when it starts

      Costs blowouts are usually the result of inadequate experience in both estimating and project delivery. The more experience a group has on delivering projects, the better their estimates and their cost control.

      Chinese have become really good at building coal fired power plants. They are not the cleanest or best finished but they work efficiently, are built fast and to a price. They have become good at the process with clear, extensive standards and well known supply chains. They are developing the same sort of competence building nuclear power stations but still coming up the learning curve.

      Infrastructure projects in Australia often blowout through the linkage between governments and unions, Labor particularly. Public infrastructure projects usually suffer from union influence. For example the current tunnelling project in the west of Melbourne has reported paying up to $300k a year to tunnel workers. During the estimating stage they were probably allowing $200k. Then there are all the additional costs that Covid has imposed on workforces. The companies would pay for any testing. They would likely have allowance for extra paid leave associated with workers waiting for test results and times when they could not work.

      Project estimating for environmental and community clearances can mushroom. It is now common practice for projects in remote areas to employ heritage observers. A few bones can delay a project for weeks or even months. That adds costs. The tunnel project to the west of Melbourne has suffered extensive delays to find a suitable contaminated spoil ground. This was clearly a joint responsibility of the government and contractor but has resulted in enormous cost blowout and project delay.

      Melbourne has been undertaking a series of level road/rail crossing removal projects. I have not looked at how costs are going but it is a series of mid-scale projects that combine to make a big project. I expect the government-contractor partnership for these projects is getting better as they gain experience.

      Randon Energy farms and associated transmission infrastructure have seen costs escalate because of community concerns and environmental hurdles that were not considered during estimating.

      It is almost impossible to build a new coal mine in Australia because there are endless environmental and legal battles. It would be extraordinary for project estimating to make adequate allowance for the disruptions associated with frivolous legal battles. Even expanding an existing mine has become challenging.

      I believe the large battery projects have been delivered close to time and budget. The Geelong battery will be delayed because of the fire but the cost should be covered by insurance. The HPR battery was installed on time and to budget as well as its recent expansion. Batteries do not require a big footprint and are considered environmentally benign.

      I have not seen the final cost forecast for the SA synchronous condensers but the first pair are currently under test. That is a year late – I do not know why. Maybe Covid caused some delays. I believe the units were delivered on time.

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      • #

        Melbourne has been undertaking a series of level road/rail crossing removal projects. I have not looked at how costs are going but it is a series of mid-scale projects that combine to make a big project. I expect the government-contractor partnership for these projects is getting better as they gain experience.

        Well i certainly hope they improve rapidly…..

        The cost of removing 50 of Melbourne’s “most dangerous and congested” level crossings has blown out by at least $2.3 billion compared to Labor’s first estimate.

        At $8.3 billion, the project is more than 38 per cent more expensive than its initial $5 billion to $6 billion estimated price tag.

        ..and the latest cost estimate to complete the remaining 25 crossings is $13.8 bn !

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    • #

      RossP
      September 13, 2021 at 8:13 am ·

      A question about costing (not this project, in particular). Why is it when engineering projects are proposed the estimated cost bares no resemblance to what it’s cost is said to be when it starts and that usually is well below the actual cost.

      In addition to the above comments,…quite often it is because the original costed project is not what is finally constructed.
      Location, scope, capacity, timing , etc etc all get altered between initial project conception and costing, and the final product.
      Anyone who has seen the ABC comedy series “.Utopia “ will realise that the show was based on reality, and clearly demonstrates how these project process unfold in the public sector. !!

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      • #
        Ronin

        Funny one was the retired guy doing the tealady service, pointed out they were getting screwed on a bridge being built, he pointed out how they could do it themselves for a quarter of the cost, turned out he was a retired civil engineer.

        20

    • #
      Brenda Spence

      Because costs get inflated when people know the govt is paying the bill.

      40

    • #
      Ronin

      Low initial bid to get the contract signed, then the ‘real costs’ magically appear so as to actually make a profit on the deal, they should be held to their bid price.

      20

      • #
        yarpos

        A consultancy I worked for eons ago won a job to relocate a major oil companies HQ. It was a very wooly spec and done as a % of costs. As it turned out, it was wooly as they were out of control and had no clue what they had in place.

        We made more money from the variations than the initial bid.

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  • #
    Graeme#4

    Was interested to see the cost per km for these types of transmission lines. Any data on the total line distance?

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  • #
    Flok

    In March 2017, the project (Snowy 2) was estimated to cost $2 billion. In April last year, a contract for part construction was let at $5.1 billion, to a syndicate made up of Italy’s Salini Impregilo, South Africa’s Clough and US company Lane Construction. The latest cost estimate, declared in the recent Standard and Poor credit assessment, was $5.7-$6.2 billion, which excludes many significant costs, especially transmission, bringing the government’s total exposure to date to more than $15 billion.

    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/financial-case-for-snowy-hydro-2-0-just-doesn-t-hold-water-20201021-p5677c.html

    All these projects are about high return in sales and foreign ownership. People will pay premium price over a very long time. This isn’t sustainability on any level, it is pure greed and madness.

    Australia is paying a premium price for no accountability passport.

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    • #
      Lance

      If you want a quick sanity check:

      Take the reported, published, Final, Government Estimate and multiply by Pi.

      Take the initial scoping estimate and multiply by 2 Pi.

      Or, take any news media reported estimate and multiply by “e” (2.7183).

      That way, you won’t get surprised.

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    • #
      Hanrahan

      Is Snowy II dedicated pump storage or does it include run of river generation?

      20

      • #
        Graeme No.3

        Hanrahan:
        Snowy II is purely pumped storage. Snowy I has pumped storage as well, but releases some water for irrigation.

        30

  • #
    Neville

    BTW I must give credit to the SMH for highlighting this story, but what a pity they’ve been pushing this UNRELIABLES insanity for decades and ditto their ABC and the AGE etc.

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  • #
    David Maddison

    Is there any Random Energy project that 1) doesn’t cost billions, 2) the cost doesn’t blow out massively and 3) is only viable because of forced purchase at high cost of a fundamentally defective product?

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    RickWill

    A solution to the cost blowout would be for the Federal Government to fund the project from the sale of their ABC. I wonder if they could find a buyer? Selling their ABC for a nominal $1, more than it is worth, would free up over $1bn annually to pay for all the new infrastructure to connect Random Energy generators.

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  • #
    RickWill

    The burden of Random Energy being carried by the coal generators has become severe this spring. The need for the reliability subsidy is becoming compelling as it gets harder for dispatchable plant to make money from the wholesale market.

    The minimum demand in the NEM for every day last week was during the middle of the day with rooftops supplying 30% of the measured demand and more behind the meter. The midday demand is regularly down to 16GW compared to 18GW early morning minimum.
    https://opennem.org.au/energy/nem/?range=7d&interval=30m

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  • #
    bobby b

    We need to start a new fight, against Catastrophic Global Cooling.

    Start pumping CO2 into the atmosphere. Burn trees, coal, bunnies, whatever works.

    Build the movement. Make up great slogans and memes. Teach our children we must stop this cooling or they’ll all die painful deaths!

    Should be easy. Looking at actual data makes it clear that this danger is more likely than global warming.

    And then, when the countervailing movements clash, we can negotiate down to “let’s all send our own idiots home and just live our lives.”

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  • #
    PeterS

    It’s the fashion now – follow the mantra of the Great Reset. Promoting anything even remotely related to renewables is now considered not only the gold standard for power generation, it is mandatory in the West. It’s part and parcel of the Great Reset. It’s a package “deal”. We can’t “progress” without it. Anyone who still thinks we can is dreaming, at least until it becomes a nightmare.

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    • #
      Forrest Gardener

      What exactly is being reset and why is it great?

      Or are there new meanings for reset and great which haven’t made it into the dictionary yet?

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      • #
        David Maddison

        It’s the official policy of the Marxist World Economic Forum. Here is their webpage.

        https://www.weforum.org/focus/the-great-reset

        It’s basically a plan to destroy capitalism and Western Civilisation in general.

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        • #
          Forrest Gardener

          Thanks David. I skimmed the web site and can only see the word reset used like a meaningless one word slogan.

          It seems to me a bit like the words progressive and conservative which are never defined as progress toward any target or conserving anything in particular.

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  • #
    Lance

    Here’s an option.

    Since the 20 GW transmission line is only loaded at 5 GW on avg, Build a 5 GW capable line for the average power the wind/solar guys can deliver. Let them figure out how to level their production using batteries, hydrogen, or whatever they think will work.

    Or, build a 20 GW line and let the solar/wind guys absorb the 75% under utilization cost of a fixed asset and price their power accordingly.

    Works for me.

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    • #
      PeterS

      It doesn’t meet one of the criteria of the Great Reset, namely to maximise expenditure at tax payers expense to suck as much blood out of us as possible so we eventually surrender to them and end up as slaves.

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    • #
      PeterS

      Unfortunately, there is no incentive to build hydroelectric dams here. We could since we do have sufficient rain fall but the problem is massive dams would need to be built to take into account periods of long droughts.

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      • #
        David Maddison

        Besides, due to advice from “Australia’s foremost climate expert”, the government’s official policy is that “it will never rain again” and “dams will never fill” so what little unexploited capacity there is left for hydro in Australia will never be built.

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  • #

    We can see why the government won’t let people choose to buy green power voluntarily.

    How do you do that? ….. “buy green power voluntarily.”

    Everybody who consumes power in Australia is connected to the grid.

    The Australian grid is 71% carbon dioxide emitting coal fired and natural gas fired power. (74.5% on the Mainland)

    You cannot ‘isolate out’ just the renewable part of that for your consumption.

    Tony.

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      David Maddison

      I think it is possible Tony.

      With smart meters it is possible to select from a pool of either proper power generation or random power generation (or a mix).

      The amount generated goes to a central database, as does the amount consumed.

      Once there is no generation the power is cut to the consumer that e.g. chose random power e.g. when the sun doesn’t shine and the wind doesn’t blow.

      There could be refinements to such a system to bid according to demand determined price. If your bid isn’t high enough for the selected energy source the power is cut.

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      • #
        PeterS

        Yes, and by way of more subsidies to renewable sources, the cost for coal fired power ends up being much higher and so coal fired power to the home is “deselected”. It then becomes a viscous circle and a race to truly free electricity to the consumer, funded of course by the tax payer! Sort of like our “free” ABC. Neat trick they could use to make coal fired power stations “redundant”. It’s the sort of “logic” the left and the so called conservatives know only so well today.

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        • #
          David Maddison

          That’s not what I had in mind PeterS, I was thinking of a free market scenario

          But I agree. With such a distorted system we operate under now, proper power generation would be outbid and then the grid would collapse.

          The system is now so rotten that it will take total grid failure to make the Sheeple wake up to the Random Energy disaster and even then they might not see it.

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          • #
            PeterS

            Free market? What’s that? Is that something we used to have centuries ago? 🙂
            Yes free markets in theory are great. When adopted in the past, empires grew to greatness – until the free market was distorted and then they eventually collapsed. Artificially low interest rates and in some cases negative rates alone are smashing free markets.

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        yarpos

        Different perspectives I think. Tony is looking at it from a real world Engineering viewpoint and you are talking about back office retail numerical gymanstics. It would be interesting to see how it would go with all the tick the box virtue signallers loosing power on a regular basis (which they wouldnt sign up for) you could tell who was virtuous in your street, they would be the dark houses. The rich and virtuous would be OK till the batteries ran out.

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      • #
        TedM

        All the smart meters in the world won’t change the mix (assuming that wind and solar are working) that you access at your power point. They are the same frequency and arrive at your home as one power source, you can’t filter them out.

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    • #
      wal1957

      Agreed.
      Then we have this…”Woolworths Group has made its first renewable power purchase agreement (PPA) as it works to transition to 100 per cent renewable electricity by 2025″
      Which is absolute rubbish. Appealing to the ignorant masses in their quest for a larger customer base. Unless they are isolated from the grid they are not 100% renewable powered. I guess that if the politicians can lie and seemingly get away with it woolworths are trying it on too.
      Isn’t their supposed to be accountability in advertising? Are our monitoring agencies asleep at the helm….again?

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    • #
      Lance

      Let’s hook those smart meters up to a solar/wind decision maker.

      Night time. No power for you.

      Wind below 20 KPH, no power for you.

      That ought to explain it all. Green Load Shedding. It’s bloody Enviro Conscious. 🙂

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    • #
      Ronin

      You can tell when you are using coal fired power, the ends of your fluoro tubes go black.

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  • #
    Jock

    I am really slow sometimes. There is another way to beat the renewable developers. I have wondered why the mat keans and the other moderates do so well in the lnp. Where do the donations come from? In the state electoral rules donations from vendors of alcohol, anyone involved in betting or anybody even remotely involved in land development or building is allowed to donate to the parties. Let’s face it the alp doesn’t care they have the unions. But do renewable companies and developers donate to the parties, particularly the lnp? This is crucial given the photios link. Because those renewables developers are getting many different subsidies from the states particularly in nsw. We should be pushing for the banning of donations from renewables because of the subsidies and the presumption there is a back hander going on. A bit the same as greens and alp giving grants to green ngo who then donates to the parties. It may be a way to cut the nexus between the renewables and governments.

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  • #
    Jock

    Sorry I should have edited. I meant builders betting and alcohol vendors cannot donate to parties.

    10

  • #

    Someone above commented that the number of ….. 45 new tech coal fired plants was bogus and that it might only be (maybe, possibly) just 25, and then there was the usual yehbut yehbut yehbut, ONE HUNDRED coal fired plants were closing.

    The same happened in the U.S. and now the same is happening in China and Japan and well, wherever new tech coal fired plants are being constructed. (everywhere else it seems)

    In the build up of coal fired power, those older tiny plants were constructed to service small areas, because that was all that was needed. (you know, power could only be transmitted so far)

    So, as these new tech coal fired plants came on line, those ancient old plants were not needed any more, so they closed in droves, and this happened in all those major Countries I mentioned.

    Those ancient plants that closed, those now time expired after 50+ years of service, were all in the range of 5MW to 10MW, with some as high as 20MW and even 50MW. The average for those plant closures was around 15MW to 20MW.

    So the total (ancient old tech) power loss for ONE HUNDRED plants comes in at around 2000MW.

    A new tech coal fired plant drives, on average two 1000MW generators, so just ONE new plant delivers more power than the now closed 100 ancient old clunkers.

    Yehbut they ‘closed’ ONE HUNDRED coal fired power plants.

    Big deal!

    Tony.

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    • #
      PeterS

      It always has been an overdose of misdirection, a favourite trick by magicians. The trouble is in the real world such “misdirections” end up destroying nations, and that’s the name of the game – destroy the West as we know it.

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      Kalm Keith

      Yee hah!

      Imagine the reduction in building and operating materials replaced by One Large Modern Plant.

      And then there are the token windmills that wouldn’t be anywhere near as productive as any one of the 100 obsolete coal fired power plants.

      We live in strange times when they can get away with the renewables Skim.

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    • #
      wal1957

      Thanks for the clarity Tony.
      I always look forward to and appreciate your comments.

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    • #
      Peter Fitzroy

      did you actually look anything up? no of course not.

      “Japan’s coal-fired power generation will drop to 26% of its energy mix in fiscal year 2030-31 (April-March), down from 31% in fiscal 2019-20” (reuters, spglobal, japan times)

      how does that match with your assertion “A new tech coal fired plant drives, on average two 1000MW generators, so just ONE new plant delivers more power than the now closed 100 ancient old clunkers.”

      Facts, never let them get in the way of ideology, but like lance, I hope you are happy in the world you have constructed for yourself

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      • #
        hypersonic

        Peter,

        I dont follow your logic here you claim a drop of 5% of coal generation proves your point though i must admit i am not sure what your point actually is but Japan will now have 26% of its power for the next 50 years generated from coal. If Japan build a couple more coal plants from this point on they will be back up to your stated 31%.

        If you have a point you wish to make please be more specific and to the point in future

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      • #
        John F Hultquist

        Japan is going to resurrect the country’s nuclear industry despite public opposition to nuclear energy in the wake of the Fukushima disaster. Prior to the disaster, the Japanese had derived 30 percent of their electricity from atomic power.
        So, go to Zero nuke and % coal goes up. Restart nuke and % coal goes down.

        Math is hard!

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      • #
        clarence.t

        Tony’s first fact is because they are going to turn on their nuclear power stations.

        Dropping coal back down to 26% percent will put them about where they were in 2000. Gas and coal will still be a very substantial percentage of their electricity supply

        Very little of Japan’s supply comes from “unreliables” of wind and solar

        They aren’t stupid enough to destroy their countryside by doing that.

        Tony second fact is a fact.. One new power station replaces many many small older ones.

        It seems to be PF that is devoid of facts, and evidence .

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      • #
        Dave

        Peter,

        “Japan’s coal-fired power generation will drop to 26% of its energy mix in fiscal year 2030-31 (April-March), down from 31% in fiscal 2019-20” (reuters, spglobal, japan times)

        Good starting point Peter, so fossil fuels are on the way out?

        What percentage of Japan is renewables currently?

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      • #
        clarence.t

        “in the world you have constructed for yourself”

        A rational, knowledgeable, engineering and science-based world, powered by reliable electricity.

        Some people will never be able to enter that world.

        They will remain irrational and ignorant all of their lives.

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    • #
      clarence.t

      “Facts, never let them get in the way of ideology,”

      A total lack of facts and evidence seems to be the only way that far-leftist idea-logs can reply to facts presented by the knowledgeable commenters like Tony and Lance.

      10

  • #
    Tides of Mudgee

    This is a bit long and I haven’t checked the accuracy of the cost of Canadian fuel or electricity, but some interesting points to ponder. ToM

    Early Math of Electric Cars – Just sayin!
    Math of Electric Cars: A Canadian perspective : THE PINEHURST PRESS NEWS & VIEWSInteresting Take on Electric Cars —As an engineer I love the electric vehicle technology. However, I have been troubled for a longtime by the fact that the electrical energy to keep the batteries charged has to come from the grid and that means more power generation and a huge increase in the distribution infrastructure.
    Whether generated from coal, gas, oil, wind or sun, installed generation capacity is limited.
    A friend sent me the following that says it very well. You should all take a look at this short article.
    IF ELECTRIC CARS DO NOT USE GASOLINE, THEY WILL NOT PARTICIPATE IN PAYING A GASOLINE TAX ON EVERY GALLON THAT IS SOLD FOR AUTOMOBILES, WHICH WAS ENACTED SOME YEARS AGO TO HELP TO MAINTAIN OUR ROADS AND BRIDGES. THEY WILL USE THE ROADS, BUT WILL NOT PAY FOR THEIR MAINTENANCE
    In case you were thinking of buying hybrid or an electric car: Ever since the advent of electric cars, the REAL cost per mile of those cars has never been discussed. All you ever heard was the mpg in terms of gasoline, with nary a mention of the cost of electricity to run it.
    This is the first article I’ve ever seen and tells the story pretty much as I expected it to.
    Electricity has to be one of the least efficient ways to power things yet they’re being shoved down our throats.
    Glad somebody finally put engineering and math to paper.
    At a neighborhood BBQ I was talking to a neighbor, a BC Hydro Executive.
    I asked him how that renewable thing was doing. He laughed, then got serious If you really intend to adopt electric vehicles, he pointed out, you had to face certain realities. For example, a home charging system for a Tesla requires 75 amp service. The average house is equipped with 100 amp service On our small street (approximately 25 homes), the electrical infrastructure would be unable to carry more than three houses with a single Tesla, each. For even half the homes to have electric vehicles, the system would be wildly over-loaded.
    This is the elephant in the room with electric vehicles. Our residential infrastructure cannot bear the load.
    So as our genius elected officials promote this nonsense, not only are we being urged to buy these things and replace our reliable, cheap generating systems with expensive, new windmills and solar cells, but we will also have to renovate our entire delivery system!
    This latter “investment” will not be revealed until we’re so far down this dead end road that it will be presented with an ‘OOPS…!’ and a shrug. If you want to argue with a green person over cars that are eco-friendly, just read the following.
    Note: If you ARE a green person, read it anyway. It’s enlightening.
    Eric test drove the Chevy Volt at the invitation of General Motors and he writes, “For four days in a row, the fully charged battery lasted only 25 miles before the Volt switched to the reserve gasoline engine. Eric calculated the car got 30 mpg including the 25 miles it ran on the battery. So, the range including the 9-gallon gas tank and the 16 kwh battery is approximately 270 miles. It will take you 4.5 hours to drive 270 miles at 60 mph. Then add 10 hours to charge the battery and you have a total trip time of 14.5 hours. In a typical road trip your average speed (including charging time) would be 20 mph.
    According to General Motors, the Volt battery holds 16 kwh of electricity. It takes a full 10 hours to charge a drained battery. The cost for the electricity to charge the Volt is never mentioned, so I looked up what I pay for electricity.
    I pay approximately (it varies with amount used and the seasons) $1.16 per kwh. 16 kwh x $1.16 per kwh = $18.56 to charge the battery. $18.56 per charge divided by 25 miles = $0.74 per mile to operate the Volt using the battery. Compare this to a similar size car with a gasoline engine that gets only 32 mpg. $3.19 per gallon divided by 32 Mpg = $0.10 per mile.
    The gasoline powered car costs about $25,000 while the Volt costs $46,000 plus.
    So the Canadian Government wants loyal Canadians not to do the math, but simply pay twice as much for a car, that costs more than seven times as much to run, and takes three times longer to drive across the country.
    And on top of all these costs, the electricity generated to charge the car batteries is still done with fossil fuels.
    Hmmm . . . And they call it the “GREEN” new deal?
    This doesn’t even take into account the danger and cost to dispose of depleted batteries.

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      PeterS

      Good detail but of course it’s doesn’t matter to our Western leaders and big business who are “in it together” to change the face and shape of the West. We need to understand there is no going back, at least not without a major revolution by the people, which appears highly unlikely at this stage and for a long time come. If anything, more and more people for now at least are enjoying the change and are eager to see it happen.
      The Reckless And The Brave
      Oh, Calamity!

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    • #
      RickWill

      I think the story has the Canadian power 10X what they actually pay:
      https://www.energyhub.org/electricity-prices/
      It is shown here as $0.174/kWh.

      I think building insurers will cause the demise of BEVs until the fire risk is resolved. They are essentially bombs on 4 wheels. All the existing infrastructure for car park fires is useless for BEVs. I have seen reports of a Tesla catching fire again days after it was towed off to a wreckers yard. A lithium battery at the point of peak energy release during thermal runaway is about twice the power of a typical car fire.
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2O07SIaxB08
      That battery is only 4kWh. Teslas have up to 75kWh battery so almost 20X the power. And passengers are sitting on it. It is not only the impact damage but the fumes are deadly.

      No basement carpark will permit BEVs to park. BEVs should be parked in open space and well separated from other vehicles.

      There has been some testing done for on-board fire suppression on BEVs but it adds weight and very little of the battery would be recoverable. It may prevent the thermal runaway now causing the severe fires.

      Shipping BEVs will become impossible after the first shipping disaster. Lithium batteries cannot be stored discharged. They are usually stored at half charge and should hold up for a year or more during transport. So a ship loaded with BEVs is no different to carrying high explosives with detonators included.

      Off-grid batteries in Australian homes cannot be mounted below living spaces. They can be located in garages that are fire separated from the dwelling. The same rule applied to BEVs means they should not be parked in garages below living areas. That is probably around 25% of Australian dwellings.

      Right now, no responsible building owner or principal occupier should permit electric vehicles to be parked in basement carparks. I doubt this has got into insurance policies yet but it will not be far off.

      So all those woke BEV owners will be ditching their vehicles because it is just so damn inconvenient to operate and house them. The sad part is that hybrids with the little batteries and sometimes different battery chemistry are being tarred with the same brush.

      Norway appears to be having a good run with BEVs but the climate and roads are quite different to Australia.

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      • #
        Hanrahan

        I just checked Canada’s electricity price before I read your post. My link gave a similar price.

        The average residential cost of electricity in Canada is $0.179 per kWh. This includes both fixed and variable costs and is based on an average monthly consumption of 1,000 kWh.

        If EVs are forced upon us rural OZ will suffer greatly: There will be no Alice Springs races, Tamworth Country Music Festival, Charters Towers Goldfields Ashes or their Country Music Festival, Boulia Dirt & Dust Festival to name but a few.

        Country towns would simply be unable to charge everyones EVs to get them home.

        I think Charters Towers is as far west as high power is available. The mineral belt is undersupplied already and reliant on open cycle gas. They have been talking of the need for CopperString II for ages now.

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      Tides of Mudgee
      September 13, 2021 at 10:39 am · Reply
      This is a bit long and I haven’t checked the accuracy of the cost of Canadian fuel or electricity……….

      You should have done a few basic checks.
      It is obviously a not well thought through beat up by an uninformed EV hater.
      There is so much bad info in there , its larfable !
      No body pays $1.16 /kWh for utility power in the real world
      Why would it take 10 hrs to recharge a 16kWh battery ?….the Volt has a 3.3 kW charger.
      Why would you include that in your trip time ? …it is a Hybrid remember , and the Volt in particular can recharge its own battery as it is driving if necessary !
      I would be embarrased to post such an obvious made up “story” !

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    • #
      Ronin

      $1.16 a kwh, surely that’s wrong.

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  • #
    Kalm Keith

    A great post Jo; short, sharp and very pointed.

    A few years ago it was estimated that the extra cost per household for Australian electricity was $438 annually.

    Plus this new hit for NSW takes us to $498 a year to enable the wonderful savings inherent in the Solar and Wind systems.

    I know it’s a bit confusing to talk about cheaper renewables when the price keeps going up but remember, this is Political Electricity and works differently to A/C.

    Don’t despair, the lower costs will show up,
    about the twelfth of never.

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    OldOzzie

    Meanwhile Sri Lanka proves yet another Green Fallacy send you broke

    New Delhi: Sri Lanka has been hit by a serious economic emergency even as it struggles to tackle the Covid-19 pandemic.

    Dwindling foreign exchange reserves, a sinking currency and soaring food inflation have come together to create a crisis which is unprecedented even by the record of the island nation that was torn by civil war for decades.

    The surge in food prices and a real fear of hoarding of essential food items was the last straw that forced President Gotabaya Rajapaksa to impose the economic emergency on 31 August under the public security ordinance.

    At the root of this economic catastrophe is a bizarre overnight flip by Rajapaksa’s government on 29 April to ban the import of chemical fertilisers and any other agrochemicals to make the Indian Ocean nation the first in the world to practice organic-only agriculture.

    The result: prices of daily food items like sugar, rice and onions have soared over twice, with sugar even touching record Rs 200/kg; kerosene oil and cooking gas prices are surging; tea crops are predicted to fail in October; and there are fears over a hit to production of other crucial export crops like cinnamon, pepper, rubber, cardamom, cloves, nutmeg, betel leaves, cocoa, and vanilla.

    These developments come amid a 30 basis points rise in the month-on-month inflation in the country, jumping to 6 per cent in August from 5.7 per cent in July. Its foreign reserves plunged 62% to $2.8 billion in July against $7.5 billion in November 2019. Moreover, the Sri Lankan rupee has fallen 7 per cent against the US dollar this year.

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    David Maddison

    The only figures worth considering with Random Energy are what is its scrap value and will the scrap value pay for the cost of its clearance and restoration of the environment to what it was previously?.

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      Ronin

      Once the windmills are worn out, gas-axe the top off the tower, weld a big basket on it and let the eagles nest there, it’ll be the most use they’ve ever been.

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    David-of-Cooyal-in-Oz

    That SMH article includes:
    ” HumeLink claimed in its submission to the Australian Energy Regulator in July that the project would have a net benefit of $491 million for consumers. ”

    A rule of thumb I once had to work with was never start a project unless the benefits were at least three times the cost. Doesn’t seem to work with this lot.

    Cheers
    Dave B

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    Neville

    It looks like COP 26 will be another COP FLOP and be every bit as big a BS and FRA-d event as COP 21 in 2015.
    Gotta love these clueless Pollies who can’t even pass their OWN UK Climate legislation in time for their own conference. DUH?
    Let’s hope that Dr Hansen and Lomborg’s team etc will help us analyse all their usual con tricks AGAIN.

    https://www.thegwpf.com/cop26-crisis-deepens-as-boris-johnson-plans-last-ditch-attempt-to-save-un-climate-summit/?mc_cid=2c581a3a2e&mc_eid=dcbe0ef09b

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    Lance

    I’m taking investments. Mind you this is only for the first few blokes.
    We’re gonna take a Billion in and profit you 5 Billion out.
    That’s the deal. No risk. No worries. No Lies. Just facts.

    We frighten people with imaginary bullcrap, then we twink off their power a few days a week. Then we advertise how bloody selfish they are to complain. Then we pay the teachers to have their kids whine about how mum is killing the world. Then we tie graduation to how well students suck up to some mindless drivel about things maybe happening in a hundred years. Then we create politics based on fear of what might happen 50 elections away from now. Then we double their costs. Yeah, its stupid, but idiots like simple stuff.

    So, on we go. We sell dispensations for being naughty. Just like The Church. But we get to control who is being naughty, without The Church. See, our take is 100% or more. How can it be more? Well because other people are selling crap on the side and they pay us to help ’em grift. Yeah, that’s how it works.

    Whatever it takes. Big or Tall, short or small. Screw em all. We got this. Vote for Me, vote for She, vote for He, whatever, whee. The minute you trusted anyone to care for your money and your family and your azz is the minute you went stupid. Nobody gives a damn about you except you and your family and your mates if you’re lucky. Everything else is the promise of a promise based on a fart.

    Only stupid people trust governments. Smart people always have a backup plan.

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    another ian

    O/T – different subject, similar theme

    “How Sri Lanka’s overnight flip to total organic farming has led to an economic disaster”

    https://theprint.in/world/how-sri-lankas-overnight-flip-to-total-organic-farming-has-led-to-an-economic-disaster/728414/

    Via a comment at Chiefio

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    Lance

    This is kind of related. It gives a sense of how things actually work.

    FactCheck.org is funded in large by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, which is run by former head of the US CDC, Richard E. Besser. The “Foundation” owns 1.8 Billion USD in a vaccine company. 15% of the Johnson Foundation assets are comprised of “Johnson & Johnson” stock. So, tell us how FactCheck.Org is an unbiased company making unbiased decisions about unbiased facts.

    Please.

    It’s a lot like how the Govt approves of billion dollar transmission lines that are financially unsound.

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    yarpos

    Looks like a typo in the subheading Jo

    “Welcome to Renewables-World where we spend $3.3b to get half a million in benefits:”

    Think you meant half a billion (491 mill)

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    Hanrahan

    Why 500kV? You need a lot more steel and glass for such high voltage.

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      RickWill

      But less copper or aluminium in the conductor and lower transmission losses as a proportion of the energy transferred. The conductors are the expensive component. Getting environment approvals is probably the most expensive element of the project.

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    Zigmaster

    Ironically , despite all the disastrous waste spent on the renewables fetish the greenies and the overseas influencers will keep saying we’re not doing enough. It’s time to fire back and trust the intelligence of the voters when it come to elections. Get rid of all limitations on nuclear energy because the failure to embrace nuclear is the most tell tale sign that the alarmist spin is totally disingenuous. If you really believed that CC was an existential threat then there really is only one way to solve it so it’s affordable and the lights stay on. Nuclear, and if there happens to be an accident which is extremely rare the 100 or 1000 or even 10000 or more who die in the process will be martyrs for a worthy cause of saving the planet. If alarmists don’t agree to adopt these nuclear technologies it’s clear they don’t believe their own BS.

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      el+gordo

      Australians don’t want nuclear power and generally its more expensive to build than a Hele coal fired power station. We need to keep our powder dry until AGW falls on its face, then it’ll be business as usual.

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        el+gordo
        September 13, 2021 at 7:32 pm ·
        Australians don’t want nuclear power……

        ?? ..did i miss the referendum ?
        ..who made you the spokesman for ALL Australians ?
        Its strange how a decision taken 50 yrs ago, is somehow unquestionable, whilst other decisions made democratically have to be revisited every 4 years ?
        And it is not even the same Nuclear technology these days.!

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      Tilba+Tilba

      Ironically , despite all the disastrous waste spent on the renewables fetish the greenies and the overseas influencers will keep saying we’re not doing enough. It’s time to fire back and trust the intelligence of the voters when it come to elections.

      Surveys show that the majority of Australians support Climate Change initiatives, and believe we should have more robust plans to get to net-zero emissions, in line with other developed nations.

      The Liberals on their own (plus being handcuffed by Barnaby Joyce Nats) are in fact lagging behind the opinion of intelligent voters. Climate Change policy causes havoc inside conservative parties because they are supported by big business, big mining, and the rural rump.

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    John Watt

    By the time we do the renewable infrastructure we might realise it would have been cheaper to lay a cable to China and buy some cheap, reliable coal-fired energy from CCP (just about everything else comes from there…why not reliable energy?). Or even build a trio of coal-fired behemoths in dear old Oz. Sorry forgot about rantings of Scomo,Albo, Greta and Al Gore. Still waiting for some IPCC/CSIRO boffin to show me where John Nicol’s destruction of the IPCC Modelling Myth is at fault.

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      RickWill

      China is working on round-the-clock solar collection in space and beaming collected energy to Earth. That is about the only way Australia will get electrical energy from China.

      It is now impossible to build a coal fired power station in Australia. It would encounter literally endless litigation. A power line is less problematic but through a challenging neighbourhood across PNG. The cost blowouts would be enormous.

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      David Maddison

      Since there’s no restrictions (yet) on Australian coal exports we could build the world’s first floating coal fired power station and more it off the coast in international waters and send Australian coal there, burn it to produce power and then import the power via cable. Alternatively we could build a land-based power station in PNG or Indonesia. The Russians also have a 70MW floating nuclear power station available for hire. We will likely need it soon.

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        David Maddison

        Correction, there are certain restrictions on Australian coal exports. Remember when India wanted to purchase a large amount of brown coal from Vicdanistan? The Vicdanistan government stopped the sale to protect the Indians from “carbon pollution”. Naturally they went elsewhere for their purchase and will make no future purchases from Australia.

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          ” … no future purchases from Australia.” Uh ???
          Bravus Resources and Mining (formerly Adani), Carmichael Mine North Galilee Basin. 10 million tonnes of coal per annum.

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        another ian

        So! The “Radio Free —-” of the electricity industry.

        Might be easier to control access points though

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        RickWill

        There are lots of floating power generators. I do not believe any are coal fired; usually diesel or gas. But they are built in low cost, high tech locations like Singapore and then towed to a river or port at a undeveloped location.

        This one appears to be self-propelled:
        https://www.lntsnl.com/our-services/owner-s-engineering/projects/220-mw-ccpp-tanir-bavi-barge-mounted-power-plant-karnataka-india/

        They would make a lot of sense for Australia given that Australia is a coastal nation and there are coal ports and gas pipelines all the way up the east coast.

        It would be the quickest way to get low cost dispatchable power into Australia. Just bring it close to a coal loader or gas pipeline and set up a conveyor belt to feed on-board hopper.

        Now there is an opportunity for someone wanting to farm the capacity subsidies.

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    RickWill

    Has anyone managed to get a share of all the energy savings that have been reported over the past two years. By that I mean an actual reduction in the price of their energy; electricity or gas?

    For example, we have firm promises that all the RE would lower the cost of electricity. The AEMO reports are awash with price reductions in wholesale price. Is anyone enjoying a reduction in price at the retail level anywhere in Australia?

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      David Maddison

      I have received no reduction in power or electricity bills. It costs me about $3000 per year, $60 per week for combined electricity and gas in Vicdanistan in a private residence. In the last year I swapped from gas heating to reverse cycle heating and cooling so my gas bill went down but my electric bill went up. The reverse cycle is cheaper than gas but I get no overall reduction because I heat more rooms and areas. But the actual electricity price per kWh goes up relentlessly.

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      robert rosicka

      According to the AEMO ? The price of electricity has risen $100 per year but I’ll check the link I just had if I can find it , I have posted a nifty guide summary of gas and electricity prices at the end of this thread.

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      robert rosicka

      Not according to this Rickwill.

      The Australian Energy Market Commission Electricity Price Trends Report states that the average annual electricity bill across Australia for the current year is up $100 from the previous year to $1776, with an average charge of 34.41 cents per kilowatt-hour – an average increase of 4 cents from the previous year.
      This was June 2021.

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    CHRIS

    Not me, Rick. Nor is my mate, who has 12 solar panels on his roof and a storage battery. He tells me that, whatever electricity he puts into the grid, it returns as a higher electricity bill…no matter what his ‘credits’ are.

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    Philip

    So sad that all this expensive nonsense is going to go ahead, that both sides of politics support it. Ten years ago when I was using Twitter it was always my argument that the costs of new transmission lines are probably not being calculated correctly or at all. I think the reply I got went along the lines “your (sic) an idiot”

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    robert rosicka

    Electricity rates in a few USA states I like Indiana with 80% coal fired generation for cheap electricity but the disparity between the US and Oz is noticeable.

    https://www.electricchoice.com/blog/state-profiles-highestlowest-electric-rates/

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    robert rosicka

    South Australia and the ACT reap the benefits of going green according to this website , scroll down to see just how cheap intermittent power generation and dangerous gas is.

    https://selectra.com.au/energy/guides/billing/average-usage

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    Brian the Engineer

    Has anyone calculated the transmission loses?

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      Hanrahan

      I’m not an engineer but losses are a basic tenant of engineering – we suffer more rolling losses with trucks than trains. So be it. Even the round trip losses of pumped hydro are OK as long as the price/availability variation of daily electricity is greater than the losses and the ginger-beers are good fortune tellers.

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    Beertruk

    Remember costs are for consumers, profits are for the unreliables industry.

    ‘Renewbull energy’ is a fake solution to a fake problem.

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