A change of power

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - OPINION -

THE sto­ries about the power out­ages in South Aus­tralia, the truth is that the sit­u­a­tion is even worse in Queens­land.

The state’s whole­sale power price hit a record in Jan­uary, higher than ev­ery other state’s – in fact dou­ble ev­ery­where else’s and triple Vic­to­ria’s.

There were three mas­sive price surges that are now be­ing in­ves­ti­gated by the Aus­tralian En­ergy Reg­u­la­tor.

As the south­ern states faced the heat­wave last week­end, an ex­pert in Queens­land said it was un­likely the state would face short­ages, as there had been a suf­fi­cient take up of so­lar power to al­le­vi­ate that crit­i­cal stress on the power grid.

I had won­dered about that, given how we are “at the end of the line” up here.

It’s good news that work is to be­gin very soon on the Mt Emer­ald wind farm, which, un­der the all- im­por­tant deal with Er­gon, will add power to the grid in this re­gion.

Of course, in­fra­struc­ture like that is pretty re­silient to cy­clones, which is a great thing for our re­gion if it comes to that.

De­spite the much-cited in­sta­bil­ity of so­lar and wind power, in the long run we’ll be bet­ter off when these, and other tech­nolo­gies on the hori­zon, change the face of the power game.

Of all places, we are es­pe­cially well lo­cated to ben­e­fit from these de­vel­op­ments.

Our state gov­ern­ment is hope­lessly ad­dicted to the rev­enue it gets from sup­ply­ing power.

The price of en­ergy sup­plied by gov­ern­ments and pri­vate op­er­a­tors seems to con­stantly go up. We should never ex­pect this to change. The only re­lief is to some­how make your own ar­range­ments when it comes to en­ergy – the most ob­vi­ous be­ing so­lar pan­els. There may be com­mu­nity ver­sions of power hubs that give much the same in­de­pen­dence. Bring it on.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.