Mixed Greens: Climate youth want 100% renewables in 10 years, REneweconomy, By Sophie Vorrath on 10 February 2014″……Power outages, sparked by the periods of extreme heat that have characterised Victoria’s 2013-14 summer, would have been much more common but for the contributions of energy efficiency, a new report has found. The report, released today by the Energy Efficiency Certificate Creators Association (EECCA), found that the Victorian Energy Efficiency Target (VEET) Scheme helped reduce peak demand by 187MM over the January heat wave. “Without the contribution from the VEET, the demand at 4pm on 16th January would have been 10,427 MW exceeding the previous electricity peak of 10,415 MW on 29 January 2009 in the lead up to the Black Saturday bushfires,” the report says. As well as saving over $500 million in the reduction of Victorian household and business energy bills, the report says the energy efficiency scheme reduced stress on infrastructure during the hot spell and likely reduced the prevalence of system black outs. Continue reading
Consultation is the key to curing wind turbine syndrome, KETAN JOSHI ABC Environment 3 Feb 14 “…….In Australia, community ownership is gaining traction. My employer, InfigenEnergy, is looking to enable community ownership of one of the wind turbines at the Flyer’s Creek development in NSW, through theCentral NSW Renewable Energy Cooperative (CENREC).
The Hepburn Wind Farm, a two-turbine community-owned wind farm in Victoria, has generated 27,809 megawatt-hours since commencement — enough to power an average Australian home for 4,209 years, and the proposed Fremantle Co-operative wind farm project in WA recently hit a $10,000 crowd-funding target to produce myth-busting videos on wind energy. The Coonooer Bridge Wind Farm development utilises a community benefit model that is the first of its kind, and has been welcomed by locals.
These initiatives are, simply, the circuit-breakers needed to lessen the influence of lobby groups working against the integration of renewable technology into our energy system, and empower communities. Abbott’s research will likely be ineffective in lessening the spread of wind energy health fears in communities.
The deployment of clean technology across Australia as a means of reducing our reliance on fossil fuels will be stewarded by tight-knit Australian communities. The companies that develop, operate and maintain large-scale generation assets fuelled by renewable resources can only benefit from community ownership and engagement.
It seems the only ones who will lose out from this shift will be those who professionally stoke anger and feed fear. The demand for their resource will run swiftly dry.http://www.abc.net.au/environment/articles/2014/02/03/3935067.htm
Australia’s micro-grid opportunity, Business Spectator, Tristan Edis, 21 Jan 14 A new report released today suggests that the improving economics of solar and battery technology mean that by 2020 it would be cost-effective for greenfield housing
What’s highly surprising is that the authors of the report suggest that it could be economically viable for some Victorian regional towns to move to self-contained solar micro-grids today.
The study was prepared by the Alternative Technology Association and the organisation Energy for the People, which is focused on developing community clean-energy power projects. It looked at three alternative Victorian locations for assessing the viability of stand-alone power solutions: the regional town of Bendigo; Werribee – a fringe suburb of Melbourne experiencing rapid greenfield housing estate growth; and inner urban Melbourne. Continue reading
Ocean Power Technologies forms new offshore wind power funding agreement With Australian Government http://www.renewableenergyfocus.com/view/36498/ocean-power-technologies-forms-new-offshore-wind-power-funding-agreement-with-australian-government/ 16 January 2014
A$66.5 million grant will be used towards the cost of building and deploying a 62.5MW peak-rated wave power station off the coast of Portland, Victoria. The agreement with the Australian Renewable Energy Agency, or “ARENA”, is a Deed of Variation to the original Funding Deed, through which a A$66.5 million grant was previously awarded by the Commonwealth.
Among the important changes included in the new agreement are:
The incorporation of milestones for each of the three stages of the project
Acceleration of reimbursement of eligible expenses for stages one and two
An increase in the number of milestones to better support project cash flow requirements The agreement also recognizes the role of Lockheed Martin as the lead for systems integration of the PowerBuoys and overall program management.
Cabinet Papers 1986-87: The struggle for indigenous land rights, SMH, Damien Murphy, 28 Dec 13, The Hawke Government continued to grapple with the sensitive issue of indigenous land rights. In March 1986 Aboriginal Affairs Minister Clyde Holding told Cabinet that NSW, Queensland and South Australia had enacted legislation and Victoria was preparing to do so, but that Tasmania and Western Australia rejected the concept of land rights legislation in principle…….
Cabinet again endorsed its 1985 Preferred National Land Rights Model, but agreed to negotiate with Western Australia on non-legislative measures such as community funding and the granting of long leases to Aboriginal reserves.
The Tasmanian and Victorian governments presented the Commonwealth with conflicting challenges. In December 1986 Mr Holding told Cabinet that Tasmania refused to recognise that Aboriginal people had any legitimate claim to land.
……….The government was concerned that the parlous state of the Aboriginal community might become an issue of moral and political embarrassment during the 1988 bicentennial celebrations……….http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/cabinet-papers-198687-the-struggle-for-indigenous-land-rights-20131228-3017r.html
Against the wind The Age, December 19, 2013 Michael Green Planning restrictions and health fears have left Victorians reluctant to embrace wind power. But this may be changing. Gwenda Allgood is a no-nonsense local councillor, five times a mayor, from Ararat. In mid-November she travelled east to Seymour to speak about wind farms at a forum on energy held in the bowls club hall.
“We did not have one objection,” she told the audience, explaining the benefits of the Challicum Hills wind farm, built in 2003. “I can only speak as I find: there is no noise [from the turbines]. I don’t know why, but there isn’t. And they’re our best ratepayer – they pay well, they really do.” Continue reading
Yingli Green Energy Hold. Co. Ltd. (ADR) : EnviroGroup Installs Australia’s Largest Grid-Connected Enphase Microinverter Project in Conjunction with Yingli Solar, 4 Traders Group, 12/11/2013 |Glenlyn Aged Care Facility to power 50 percent of its energy needs with solar power
Enphase Energy, Inc. (NASDAQ:ENPH), today announced that EnviroGroup, a specialist provider of renewable energy products and systems for commercial applications, government clients and residential home owners, has successfully installed Australia’s largest grid-connected solar power system with Enphase microinverters, in conjunction with Yingli Green Energy, known as “Yingli Solar”, at the Glenlyn Aged Care Facility in Glenroy, Victoria.
Below – Brisbane’s solar powered nursing home
Wind farm ruling a win for communities: Clean energy group http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-11-27/wind-farm-health-findings-a-win-for-communities/5120036 ABC Rural By Babs McHugh The Clean Energy Council says the latest rejection of claims of negative health effects of wind farms is adding more certainty to the future of the industry for investors.
The Victoria Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) has approved a 16-turbine wind farm at Trawool, north of Melbourne, after finding there’s no evidence they have adverse effects on health and well being. Director of policy with the Clean Energy Council, Russell Marsh, says he wasn’t surprised by the findings. ”Pretty much every wind farm that’s been proposed in recent years has been opposed on grounds of adverse health effects.
“What we’ve seen in the last 24 hours is that there’s yet more evidence to show that those claims are unfounded. ”New South Wales and Victorian state health bodies, and federal departments also, have found there’s no scientific evidence to back up claims of ill- health effects, physical and psychological.
“And this is backed up by a noise study for the Waterloo wind farm released yesterday by the South Australian Environmental Protection Agency. ”That found the noise from the wind farm fell below the thresholds set under the planning conditions.
“Also, the rumbling noise that some residents complained about (in diaries they were asked to keep) was present at times when the wind farm was switched off.” Mr Marsh says it’s not only wind farm operators who these findings benefit. ”It is a significant win for the industry, but also for communities who live near wind farms. ”Yet again, this is showing that when these adverse health (claims) are tested, they don’t stack up.
“So communities shouldn’t be concerned about a wind farm being located near them.”
Cherry Tree wind farm gets go ahead in Victoria ABC Rural By Babs McHugh 27 Nov 2013, The Victoria Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) has approved a wind farm after finding there’s no evidence wind farms have adverse effects on health and wellbeing. Infigen Energy’s proposal for a 16-turbine wind farm near Seymour, north of Melbourne, was rejected by the Mitchell Shire Council, which said there were widespread health concerns.
The council said it had received more than 100 objections to the project in the Trawool Valley, which also raised concerns about disruption to the landscape.
Infigen appealed the decision to the VCAT, and the Cherry Tree Wind Farm is now the first to be given the go-ahead under the Victorian Government’s new planning laws for wind farms which were introduced in 2011.
The Tribunal used information from the New South Wales and the Victorian health departments that shows there’s no scientific evidence to link wind turbines with adverse health effects or support claims that inaudible sound can have psychological effects……. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-11-27/wind-farm-go-ahead-victoria/5119518
Waubra Wednesday #9 – Community demands its name back from anti-wind farm group On 1 November 2013, the Waubra community ramped up its campaign to reclaim its name from an anti-wind farm campaign group known as the Waubra Foundation. Yes 2 Renewables November 6, 2013 by Leigh Ewbank Fed up with the town’s name being tarnished by claims of a ‘Waubra disease‘, community leaders have sent a petition with 316 signatures to the anti-wind farm organisation asking them to stop using town’s name. Yes 2 Renewables applaud the community’s effort on the issue.
“Waubra is associated with wind towers. We don’t mind that,” Waubra wind farmer Doug Hobson told The Courier. “With the turbines people actually take more notice of our town as they pass through.
“But when you Google ‘Waubra’ the first thing that comes up is something negative about our town. People would think that everyone in Waubra doesn’t like wind farms, and that is not the case,” Hobson added.
The petition was sent to the Waubra Foundation just days after they announced more anti-wind farm campaigners to positions in the organisation, such as retired Liberal MP Alby Schultz who is slated to lobby the Abbott government. Yes 2 Renewables commented on the appointments at Climate Spectator.
It’s clear the Waubra Foundation has no credible claim to use the town’s name. Yet will the Foundation heed the wishes of community members or will it ignore them? Time will tell. For now, Yes 2 Renewables will keep an eye on the situation…….
Cover Letter sent with the petition….
enriched uranium demand would remain depressed in the next two to three years due to the shutdown of nuclear plants after the Fukushima nuclear plant disaster i
China solar backers sought in Australia, South China Morning Post Silex, claiming a technology edge, is talking to state-backed power generators for investment in an expansion of a major solar farm project Eric Ng email@example.com 05 November, 2013 Silex Systems, an Australian solar energy and nuclear fuel enrichment technology firm, is in talks with Chinese state-backed power generators to invest in its major solar farm project in Australia and buy its equipment to develop projects in China.
The company, listed in Australia and the United States, commissioned a 1.5 megawatts solar farm in Victoria in July, and plans to build a 100MW expansion project on the same site late next year.
Its 1.5MW plant is Australia’s first grid-connected solar farm based on so-called concentrated photovoltaic (CPV) technology.
Silex chief executive Michael Goldsworthy said the company had started talks with two of the mainland’s five state-owned power generation groups about investing in the proposed 100MW project, and for them to buy equipment from Silex to develop solar farms on the mainland. Continue reading
North west Victoria tapping into renewable energy http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-11-04/ag-energy-victoria/5067808Vic Country Hour By Brett Worthington Nov 2013, Victoria’s north west is quickly developing a reputation as the state’s clean energy heartland.
Near Mildura, there are plans to build a power plant that uses waste from almond, grape and grain growing. Just meters away is a one of Australia’s largest solar electricity plants, which features satellite dishes covered in mirrors.
Melbourne University researcher David Coote says agricultural communities can slash their bills if they embrace renewable technology. ”Somewhere like Mildura could easily target going 100 per cent renewable,” he said. Continue reading
Scientists warn bushfire season getting longer The Age, October 19, 2013 Craig Butt, Lara O’Toole A bushfire season that starts in spring and stretches well into autumn will be the new norm for Australia’s south-east, according to scientists.
Melbourne University research fellow in climate science Sophie Lewis said catastrophic events such as the fires in NSW should come as no surprise, due to a dry winter and the ongoing effects of climate change.
The past 12 months have been the warmest documented, while 2013 is set to go down as the hottest calendar year in Australia.
”Now is the time we need to plan for a longer fire season,” Dr Lewis said. ”It’s something we’re going to expect, looking to the future.”
The Clean Energy Council said it was the perfect time for new laws to be introduced so new buildings did not hamper the energy efficiency of their neighbours.
Solar review casts shadow on high-rises http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/solar-review-casts-shadow-on-highrises-20131007-2v4bs.html October 8, 2013 Aisha Dow Developers may be prevented from building high-rises that block sunlight from hitting solar panels on buildings in central Melbourne, under new rules being considered by the state government.
The Department of Transport, Planning and Local Infrastructure is reviewing planning and building provisions that affect solar panel placement and overshadowing. A department spokesman said the review would decide whether there is need for reform, with any changes to be part of the new Metropolitan Planning Strategy.
The move comes as a new study shows Melbourne’s inner-city rooftops could host enough solar panels to power 10,000 houses.They found that even if only 20 per cent of roof space was covered by panels it would be enough to host the equivalent of 100 large solar parks.
Councillor and sustainable business expert Arron Wood said the figure would be much higher if they had also audited high-rise towers and business and apartment buildings in the central city. But concerns about the sun being blocked by new construction in the CBD led the council to limit its scoping study. Cr Wood said there needed to be stronger government policy on the shadowing of solar panels.
”It’s also another reason why we should stick to the mandatory building height limits, and that’s something we have considered,” he said.
Last year a proposal to build two double-storey houses in Kensington was rejected by the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal after a neighbour complained the structure would partially eclipse his rooftop panels. VCAT called for clearer guidelines for determining acceptable levels of overshadowing. Continue reading
Ratepayers may pay for Tim Flannery Climate Council JOHN MASANAUSKAS HERALD SUN OCTOBER 08, 2013 COUNCILS may volunteer their ratepayers’ money to help prop up a climate advisory group axed by the Abbott Government.Some local councils are considering whether to donate to the new Climate Council, led by controversial scientist Professor Tim Flannery.
Prof Flannery was formerly in charge of the federal Climate Commission, which was relaunched as the Climate Council after the new Government abolished it. The Council is being funded through public donations; about $1 million has been raised so far.
The inner city Yarra Council will vote on Tuesday night on a motion to donate funds and join the Climate Council as a “founding friend”.Greens councillor Amanda Stone, who is putting the motion, said it would be up to councillors to decide if and how much to donate.
“Given that Yarra Council is a leader in addressing climate change at the local level it’s highly appropriate that we express support in a symbolic perhaps more than in a very concrete way,” she said. ”I wouldn’t imagine it would be a huge amount.”…….
Cr Stone said she understood that a similar motion to go before Moreland Council had suggested a $1000 donation.
“Given that the vast majority of climate scientists are agreed on the science and the implications for people on this planet, it’s absolutely vital that there’s an independent source of accurate information there for people to access,” she said.
Cr Stone said she was confident Yarra ratepayers would support the gesture as there was strong support for the council’s policies on sustainability and climate change……….Yarra claims to be the first Victorian council to achieve carbon neutrality. http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/ratepayers-may-pay-for-tim-flannery-climate-council/story-fni0fiyv-1226734337554