Australian news, and some related international items

Renewable energy, Australian media, and BHP Billiton

Across the world’s media – so much about oil spill, about wonderful nuclear power, about soccer … but also quite a lot about Renewable Energy. Yes, renewable energy is happening, and it deserves more coverage.

Of course, in Australia, the news is all about the dreaded super profit resources tax, and how awful our P.M is supposed to be.  They’ve done a good job – the corporate-dominated media.

Meanwhile –

BHP Billiton are probably finding this whole tax saga quite convenient, as there are several other factors holding up the expansion of Olympic Dam. China is cutting down on energy use. Uranium prices in the doldrums.

Apart from the serious legal and environmental concerns about Olympic Dam, there’s the unmentioned issue of seismic activity.

Last year’s incident that paralysed the main shaft activity is still a mystery. It could turn out the the whole expansion operation is unsafe and unviable, and BHP can conveniently blame the Australian government, when it abandons the project

June 17, 2010 Posted by | energy, solar, uranium | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

UK support for Australian union’s stand against health danger of uranium industry

“We will be urging unions in the UK to join in the stand opposing nuclear- rather than joining the industry’s Compensation Scheme for Radiation Linked Diseases which has thousands of applicants and has paid out millions of pounds – with the caveat that you don’t talk about it,”

Radiation Free Lakeland backs Aussie unions’ nuclear stance , GETNOTICEDONLINE  Uk 14 June 2010 Radiation Free Lakeland is supporting Australian unions who have banned members from working in the nuclear industry. Continue reading

June 17, 2010 Posted by | uranium | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Low price continues for uranium

Uranium oxide price shows no sign of moving | Industrial Fuels and Power News . Trading June 17th, 2010 by IFandP Newsroom The uranium spot market remains in the doldrums. The weekly spot price for uranium oxide hovered at US$40.75 in the week ended June 14 with no change from the previous week, according to Ux Consulting Co, a view echoed by TradeTech. Three transactions were reported with the gap between buyers and sellers remaining narrow at around US$1.00…… Uranium oxide price shows no sign of moving | Industrial Fuels and Power

June 17, 2010 Posted by | uranium | , , | Leave a comment

Australian govt wimping out on renewable energy legislation?

Several sources are reporting the Federal Government has withdrawn legislation related to a revamp of Australia’s Renewable Energy Target (RET) and that it may not be presented again until after the next Federal election.

Reports : Renewable Energy Target Legislation Stalled : Renewable Energy News  June 18: A Revised Draft Legislation Program for the Senate released last night shows the RET vote will be going ahead, but rescheduled Continue reading

June 17, 2010 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, energy, politics, solar | , , , , | Leave a comment

Decentralised solar power an energy answer for remote and urban areas

Solar PV systems provide environment-friendly power generating solution for electrifying remote rural areas where it is neither technically nor economically feasible to extend grid coverage across vast territories

Australia & New Zealand solar PV market report, Renewable Energy Focus, 17 June 2010 In Australia and New Zealand, solar photovoltaic (PV) market trends indicate burgeoning demand Continue reading

June 17, 2010 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, climate change - global warming, energy, solar | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Spain increasing already profitable solar power industry

Despite cuts, Spain’s subsidy structure still enables renewable power producers to earn up to 10 times more than fossil fuel producers for their energy…..Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luiz Rodriguez Zapatero .. believes that his country’s goals will be obtained through increased private investment.

Spain Shoots for 67 Percent More Renewable Energy, CALFINDER , 18 June 2010, In a draft proposal on its way to the European Commission, Spain proposes that renewable generation capacity increase to 70 gigawatts by 2020, up from 42 gigawatts currently. Continue reading

June 17, 2010 Posted by | solar | , , | Leave a comment

Australian media publicising mining billionaires’ cheating message

On Australian TV we witness the unappetising vision of a bunch of billionaires looking like feral hippies – protesting against the government’s proposed super profit resources tax.

Well, of course – these impoverished underprivileged citizens want to have their 15% minimum profit,  pretty much untrammelled by letting us – the great unwashed, and our  descendants, get some benefit from this greed and environmental destruction.

It is sad that the Australian public can be conned in this way, due to media that is either bowing to its corporate ownership, or just too stupid or slack to see what is happening.

No wonder BHP, Rio Tinto etc are scared that other governments might get the idea of acting in the interests of their people, rather than of corporations. And it’s happening – – in the nuclear industry, as Germany is about to ring in a similar tax on nuclear power.

June 17, 2010 Posted by | Christina reviews, energy, uranium | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Australia’s national organisations in favour of super profit resources tax

It’s wrong for billionaires to hijack this debate and hold the country to ransom with their $100 million scare campaign.”

Australia needs a robust tax system with fair and efficient taxation of mining super profits   The Australian  June 14, 2010   A JOINT statement by the Australian Council of Trade Unions, Australian Council of Social Service, Australian Conservation Foundation and the Consumers’ Federation of Australia.

NATIONAL organisations representing social and community sector, unions, environmental and consumer groups have called for the voices of ordinary Australians to be heard in a tax debate that has been dominated by powerful vested mining interests. Continue reading

June 17, 2010 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics, uranium | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Miners want 15% profit – Olympic Dam uranium mine expansion might not proceed

Broker casts doubt on viability of Olympic Dam expansion, Sydney Morning Herald, BARRY FITZGERALD, June 17, 2010
BHP BILLITON’S proposed Olympic Dam expansion in South Australia’s outback could have no ”economic value” under the Rudd government’s hotly debated proposal to subject resource company super profits to an additional 40 per cent tax

……. the assessment of mining analysts at Morgan Stanley, ”Our modelling of this project shows that the resource super profits tax reduces the net present value of the project to an extent that it becomes negative, and return on invested capital falls below the minimum hurdle rate of 15 per cent used by the mining industry.

BHP Billiton’s managing director, Marius Kloppers……. said that although BHP had not shelved or frozen projects in response to the proposed tax, Olympic Dam was the sort of high capital expenditure project with long lead times that was ”most disadvantaged”……But BHP has yet to commit to the project. Approval from the SA, Northern Territory (ore is exported from Darwin) and federal governments is needed and is planned for the first half of next year. The final proposal with all the permits and conditions attached is then likely to go before the board in the latter half of next year.

June 17, 2010 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics, uranium | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

New tax on nuclear brings uncertainty into nuclear industry

if the plan is approved, other countries could adopt similar measures…the new move will bring uncertainty in the European nuclear sector,

Huge nuclear tax on the cards in Germany, World Nuclear News, By Rumyana Vakarelska, 15 June 2010 The German Ministry of Finance has envisaged an additional €2.3 billion ($2.8 billion) per year ‘windfall tax’ on nuclear operators as part of the 2011 Federal Budget and its financial plan up to 2014………..According to the German Finance Ministry the charge “will be necessary, as part of an overall energy concept, to prolong the operational life of nuclear power plants.” At a time when Germany is looking for tens of billions of euros in budget savings, the ministry said that the money will be used to meet nuclear decommissioning and final repository costs.….. Continue reading

June 17, 2010 Posted by | uranium | , , , , | Leave a comment

W.A. Premier threatens compulsory Aboriginal land acquisition – gas now, uranium later?

Gas hub land may be compulsorily acquired ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation), 15 June 2010, The Premier Colin Barnett has again foreshadowed compulsorily acquiring land north of Broome to build a Kimberley gas hub. Continue reading

June 17, 2010 Posted by | aboriginal issues, energy, uranium, Western Australia | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Mike Rann – Premier for the Uranium Lobby

No unconditional support on tax – Rann | Adelaide Now, Christopher Russell, June 16, 2010 Mr Rann formally opened the Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy’s uranium conference 2010, being held this week at the Adelaide Convention Centre…….

AusIMM president Greg Chalmers said ……..”Uranium should have demonstrated green credentials and cost benefits if we can get over emotions versus logic.…….”

June 17, 2010 Posted by | General News, uranium | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Uranium project stalled idefinitely by community opposition

A conglomeration of NGOs, civil society organizations including the powerful Khasi Students Union (KSU) is leading the agitations to prevent UCIL from starting the site activities. Opposition to uranium mining

(India) KPM Uranium Mining in Meghalaya: A Controversial Project | PRAGOTI, 15 June 2010, Problems in Meghalaya KPM project in Meghalaya has been mired in controversy right since its inception forcing the UCIL to stall its activities Continue reading

June 17, 2010 Posted by | uranium | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Video on Nuclear waste Dump for Australian Aboriginal Land

VIDEO Australia nuclear waste dump row – Asia-Pacific – Al Jazeera English Asia-Pacific – Al Jazeera 17 June 2010, Australia’s government is pushing its plans for a nuclear waste dump in a remote part of the country’s Northern Territory.It has signed an agreement with the traditional owners of the land who will receive $10m in compensation, most of it in cash.But the proposed nuclear dump has divided local people while and environmentalists warn it could one day be used to store waste from overseas.Al Jazeera’s Azhar Sukri reports.

June 17, 2010 Posted by | aboriginal issues, Northern Territory, uranium | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Labor’s sorry record on uranium mining and Aboriginal rights

Ark Tribe faces the bosses’ court – time for unions to get back on the front foot, Socialist Alliance Unionists, 17 June 2010, “…..Indigenous rights? The racist and humiliating Northern Territory Intervention. Uranium mining? Looming open slather for mining bosses. So why support the ALP? Continue reading

June 17, 2010 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics, uranium | , , , , , , | Leave a comment