Category Archives: Climate Change

If South Africa can do it……..

why can’t Australia?

from Treehugger

Africa’s largest solar farm (325,480 PV modules) is now fully operational!

Jasper solar farm South-Africa

Promo image SR

The Jasper solar farm, located near Kimberley in South Africa, is now the continent’s largest solar power project. Construction was completed in October, and it is now fully operational (you can read that in the Star Wars emperor’s voice). With a rated capacity of 96 megawatts, Jasper will produce about 180,000 megawatt-hours of clean energy annually for South African residents, enough to power up to 80,000 homes.

SR/Promo image

What makes this even better is that Japser won’t stay the biggest solar project for long. In the same area, in South-Africa, near the 75-megawatt Lesedi project that came online last May, a 100-megawatt concentrated solar thermal power (CSP) project called Redstone is also under construction.

SR/Promo image

Look at that scale. The Jasper Project generated about 1 million man-hours of paid work during construction, peaking at over 800 on-site construction jobs.

South Africa has a goal of having 18 gigawatts of renewable energy by 2030, so projects like this are definitely steps in the right direction. If there’s one thing that South Africa has lots of, it’s sunlight!

SR/Promo image

45% of the total project value was spent on “local content” to help increase the positive economic impact on the area.

SR/Promo image

The project was developed by a consortium consisting of SolarReserve, the Kensani Group (an experienced empowerment investment player in South Africa), and Intikon Energy (a South African developer of renewable energy projects).

Financing came from local and international sources, including Google and the Public Investment Corporation (PIC), Intikon Energy, Kensani Capital Investments,, the PEACE Humansrus Community Trust, and SolarReserve with Rand Merchant Bank.

SR/Promo image

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Abbott sabotages RET, Palmer greenwashes ERF…

from Precarious Climate

It’s been a depressing three weeks for Australian climate policy.

Abbott kills large-scale renewables

On 22 October, the Abbott government announced it would seek to persuade the Senate to slash the 2020 large-scale renewable energy target (LRET) from 41,000 to 26,000 GWh. Renewables will be allowed to meet no more than 50% of new energy demand (if there is any new demand). This, the main recommendation of the Warburton review, will essentially kill Australia’s wind and large-scale solar industries. The day after the announcement Keppel Prince, Australia’s largest manufacturer of wind towers, closed most of its wind tower manufacturing operations.

Even before the announcement, large-scale renewable energy investment in Australia had already ground to a halt, because of a surplus of RET certificates and the political uncertainty fostered by the fossil fuel lobby and government. For these reasons, and because of the urgent need to get to 100% renewables to mitigate global warming, the target should have been increased, not decreased.

On the bright side, the government says it will continue to support “household solar”, which at face value appears to mean the small-scale renewable energy scheme (SRES) will be left intact. Ominously, though, the government has refused to clarify that there will be absolutely no changes to SRES, so it too could yet be quietly weakened or sabotaged.

It’s pretty obvious solar would never have been (apparently) saved if not for the “Save Solar” campaign, which seems to have…..

Read the rest here.

 

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Thin Ice kickstarter campaign

Please go to my good friend Rachel’s blog and read about the documentary Thin Ice and how you can help to distribute it to a much wider audience. Rachel’s blog

 

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Abbott will be booed at his own funeral.

Yet another market for Australian coal looks shaky but still our backward government fails to grasp the economic and climate consequences. The opportunity for this country to be a world leader in renewable energy science and innovation is fast slipping and Abbott is hellbent on clinging on to 20th century technology for the sake of his political donors. Meanwhile he is selling out the economic prosperity of future generations, let alone the health of the planet for those future generations. “Coal is good for humanity” he claims. He must have a special dictionary that defines “humanity” as “lobbyist and donor paid political power at the expense of thought and reason.”

Future historians will not be kind to Abbott. He will go down in history as the Prime Minister who missed the chance to be a great leader. The Prime Minister whose wicked and regressive ideology turned a once great and prosperous nation of innovators into an international laughing stock. The Prime Minister whose legacy will want to be forgotten but can’t as every heatwave, drought, flood, bushfire and and super-cyclone brings it back into sharp focus. The Prime Minister who will be booed at his own funeral.

Solar cheaper in India than imported Australian coal.

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How the electricity industry is trying to block solar part 2

Following on from RenewEconomy’s earlier post. Here is the rest of how the fossil fuel generators try to discourage the uptake of solar.

How the electricity industry is trying to block solar part 2.

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NSW flags wind farm planning changes as it seeks to move turbines

I really am at a loss trying to understand idiots like Pru Goward, Joe Hockey and Alan Jones when they try and justify their beliefs that wind turbines cause illness. I’m not going to rehash how stupid this actually is. If you like you can read about it here, here, here and here. Personally, I find the argument that wind turbines are ugly or “utterly offensive” even more ridiculous.

coal

Anyway, read all about the latest nutjobbery from conservative NSW politicians here.

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How the electricity industry is trying to block solar in Australia

Photo credit: Justin McManus

Well they would, wouldn’t they?

How the electricity industry is trying to block solar in Australia.

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