Has Chief Scientist Alan Finkel Got It Wrong On Hydrogen And Natural Gas?

Chief Scientist Dr. Alan Finkel - Hydrogen

On Wednesday last week Australia’s Chief Scientist, Alan Finkel, gave a talk on Australia’s energy future at the National Press Club.  While there’s no doubt Australia’s Chief Scientist is a smart cookie, I think a couple of predictions he made are fairly obviously wrong. [Read more…]

AEMO Says They Will Support A Broken Market System That Puts Lives In Danger

AEMO 2020 Integrated System Plan

Australia’s Energy Markets Are Broken Because They Ignore Externalities

You would think the middle of a horrendous bushfire season — at a time when large areas of New South Wales were ablaze and air quality in Sydney was worse than Shanghai thanks to smoke hanging in the air like the ghost of gums before drifting out to sea — would be a bad time for the Australia Energy Market Operator (AEMO) to announce they are okay with people dying from fossil fuel use as long as someone is making money from it. [Read more…]

House Of Reps Report Supports Nuclear – But Only If Everyone Is Into It

Sizewell A and B nuclear power stations

It’s not about safety – it’s about cost. Nuclear power is just too damn expensive for Australia.

Last Friday the House Of Representatives released a report on nuclear energy in Australia.  They said it’s a good idea — provided everyone is cool with it. [Read more…]

The “Solar Rebate” Is Not Ending: Don’t Be Fooled By Misleading Ads

Australia's solar rebate is not ending

The “solar rebate” does not end this year. In fact rooftop solar power may be cheaper early next year.

DON’T PANIC!  Despite attempts by dodgy advertisers1 to convince you otherwise, the “solar rebate” isn’t ending any time soon.  Renewable energy certificates (called STCs) will still be lowering the cost of rooftop solar for years to come.  To be precise, for another 11 years, 1 month, and 2 days. [Read more…]

Bigger Is Better — Installing Over 6 Kilowatts Of Solar Almost Always Pays

3 kW vs 6.5 kW - Solar Energy - Bigger Is Better

If you asked me how much solar you should put on your roof I would say, “As much as you can without doing something stupid like borrowing from the mafia or doubling up on solar panels by stacking them on top of each other.”  In other words, install as much as you can without making problems for yourself. [Read more…]

Australian Coal Power Will Be Quickly Killed By Low Cost Renewables

Coal being pushed out by wind and solar power

Low Cost Renewables Will Soon Drive Coal Power Out Of The Market

Last month the entire country sweltered under an oppressive heatwave — except the half known as Western Australia.  As air conditioner power consumption soared on the 25th, 40% of Victoria’s coal generators failed followed by rolling blackouts. When faced with this incontrovertible evidence of coal’s unreliability, the government dedicated itself to the rapid phaseout of coal under its “affordable, reliable 24/7 power” program.

Sorry, only kidding.  What they actually did was offer to pay the debts of new coal power stations that go bust. [Read more…]

Labor’s Hydrogen Plan Is A Lead Zeppelin

Labor hydrogen plan

Why Australia Is Unlikely To Ever Export Large Quantities Of Hydrogen

As Michael reported this week, Labor has announced in a media release that, if elected, they will spend $3 million building a “National Hydrogen Innovation Hub” in Gladstone and make over $1 billion available in loans for to develop hydrogen production.  Labor also say they will remove regulatory barriers and make research into hydrogen production, storage, and transport a priority . [Read more…]

Are Time-Of-Use Tariffs The Secret To Fast Battery Payback?

Time of Use tariffs and solar battery storage

Do batteries save money with time-of-use tariffs?

Home battery systems continue to fall in price — with an exception or two — and we are getting closer to the day when they will save a typical household money without subsidy or being part of a Virtual Power Plant.

But there is one thing that almost gets batteries to pay for themselves right now: the ridiculously expensive peak rates some time-of-use electricity tariffs charge.  But, without a subsidy, time-of-use tariffs and batteries will only save money for a few exceptional households.  [Read more…]

Death Match: Origin Solar Flex Leasing Vs. Buying Your Own System

lease vs cash - Origin Solar Flex review

Solar power for $0 upfront sounds tempting. But is it a good deal?

This is Thunderdome.

Two methods of putting solar on your roof enter.

One method leaves.

Today’s deathmatch is between Origin Energy’s Solar Flex leasing agreement and Private Ownership! [Read more…]

SunTenants: A Simple Way To Get Solar On Rented Roofs?

tenant and landlord looking at returns

Suntenants offers simple solar for renters.

Update August 25th 2021:  Sun Tenants is no longer in operation.

Almost one-third of Australians live in rental properties.  This is a problem because tenants don’t like paying their own money to put solar panels on their landlord’s roof and few landlords see solar power as a good investment.  Because of this, lots of the population are missing out on the savings solar slathers all over electricity bills.  It also prevents the world benefiting from the extra clean energy that would be generated. [Read more…]

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