Antinuclear

Australian news, and some related international items

Nuclear news Australia – to October 15

Unfortunately, that strange and worrying individual, Donald Trump, has yet again managed to dominate the news media, on nuclear and other issues. He has has struck a blow against the 2015 Iran nuclear agreement – in defiance of other world powers – by choosing not to certify that Tehran is complying with the deal. If Iran now leaves the deal, there’s the prospect of  a new nuclear arms race, in the Middle East. Nobel Peace Prize winner ICAN says Trump is ‘igniting new conflict rather than reducing risk of war’.

Meanwhile, there’s the escalating danger of an American nuclear first strike on North Korea.

AUSTRALIA

NUCLEAR.

CLIMATE.  Australia’s climate policy just like Trump’s , while Chief Scientist Alan Finkel makes last plea for Clean Energy Target.  Foreign Minister Julie Bishop slaps down Abbott’s climate speech.  Climate change is a “crap” theory – and climate change is also “doing good” – says former PM Tony Abbott. Tony Abbott’s climate outburst was intended to wreck Turnbull’s attempt at energy policy.

Sea level rise, and the plight of Australia’s island neighbours – Kiribati.

Across Australia, thousands protest against Adani Carmichael coal mine. Poll shows that 67% of Queenslanders want the Premier to veto the  $1 billion loan planned for Adani.

ENERGY.  Australian Energy Market Operator says shift to renewables is going to happen anyway.    Small-scale solar cutting $billions from electricity bills. The solar power juggernaut is catching Australia by surprise. New polling released   by The Australia Institute’s Climate & Energy Program, shows two thirds of voters would prefer to see governments increasing energy conservation rather than building new power stations. Queensland renewables tender swamped by 115 projects, 6,000MW of storage. New $400 million solar farm for Port Augusta, South Australia. More at http://reneweconomy.com.au/

 

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October 14, 2017 Posted by | Christina reviews | Leave a comment

Climate change, sea level rise, and the plight of Australia’s island neighbours – Kiribati

Former president Anote Tong compares Kiribati’s future to the sinking of the Titanic, ABC News By Sarah Hancock , 13 Oct 17 Anote Tong is the former president of the Republic of Kiribati and his island home, in the central Pacific Ocean, is already suffering from the effects of climate change.

Rising sea levels are causing land to be engulfed by tidal waters, driving people away from their homes and leaving them displaced.

Anote Tong is the former president of the Republic of Kiribati and his island home, in the central Pacific Ocean, is already suffering from the effects of climate change.

Rising sea levels are causing land to be engulfed by tidal waters, driving people away from their homes and leaving them displaced.

“What I have seen in my lifetime over the years has been villages, communities, who have had to leave … because it is no longer viable,” he said. “The sea is there and there is nothing. Everything has been taken away so they have had to relocate.”……..

“As a grandfather I have got to think beyond that, as a leader I have to think beyond what will happen today, and knowing what we know today, what will happen to the next generation,” he said.

Mr Tong compared Kiribati’s future to the sinking of the Titanic.

“We are the people who will be swimming,” he said.

“The question will be — will those people on the lifeboats bother to pull us in or push us away because we would be too problematic?”  http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-10-13/anote-tong-delivers-strong-message-on-climate-change/9048088

October 14, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, climate change - global warming, politics international | 1 Comment

Small-scale solar cutting $billions from electricity bills 

http://www.theage.com.au/business/energy/smallscale-solar-cutting-billions-from-electricity-bills-20171012-gyzf2c.html, Cole Latimer, 14 Oct 17,

Small-scale solar systems have cut wholesale electricity costs by up to half in the past 12 months, a study has shown.

The report by consulting firm Energy Synapse, commissioned by a community-based organisation Solar Citizens Australia, found solar photovoltaic (PV) installations in NSW had saved consumers up to $2.2 billion from May 2016 to April 2017

During this period, small solar PV systems are estimated to have generated 1540 gigawatt hours of power within the state.

The report says the volume-weighted average price of wholesale electricity would have been between $29 and $44 per megawatt hour higher than the actual average price for the period of $88 per megawatt hour.

The study found that small-scale solar had the largest impact during February, when record heatwaves were experienced, reducing the volume-weighted average price of wholesale electricity by between $119 and $258 per megawatt hour.

There has been a massive increase in renewable energy investment and construction this year. New solar energy generation has grown by 50 per cent globally, according to a report by the International Energy Agency. The IEA’s Renewables 2017 report says 165 gigawatts of new energy came online from renewables as a whole – including solar, wind and hydro power.

“We see renewables growing by about 1000 GW by 2022, which equals about half of the current global capacity in coal power, which took 80 years to build,” IEA executive director Fatih Birol said.

“What we are witnessing is the birth of a new era in solar PV. We expect that solar PV capacity growth will be higher than any other renewable technology through 2022.”

In Australia, there are more than 40 large-scale renewable energy projects that have either started, or will start, construction this year.

Clean Energy Council chief executive Kane Thorton said this represented an investment of more than $8 billion.

“These 41 projects will deliver over 4330MW of new capacity, which is crucial to increasing supply in the energy market, replacing old coal-fired generation that continues to close, and ensuring downward pressure on power prices,” Mr Thornton said.

There are 26 projects being built, and another 14 projects that have secured finance with the expectation that construction will start before the end of the year.

“We have already seen six times the investment value in 2017 of what we saw in 2016, and the new capacity will also help with energy security,” Mr Thornton said.

“In 2016, the combined capacity from all projects completed stood at 264.1 MW. This year 2210.2 MW of projects have been committed and 1881.2 MW are in construction with a whole financial quarter still to go.”

October 14, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, business, solar | Leave a comment

Nobel Peace Prize winner ICAN says Trump is ‘igniting new conflict rather than reducing risk of war

Iran nuclear deal: Nobel Peace Prize winner says Trump is ‘igniting new conflict rather than reducing risk of warhttp://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/politics/iran-nuclear-deal-latest-trump-ican-nobel-peace-prize-igniting-conflict-war-a7999741.html

The International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons strongly criticises the President, Shehab Khan @shehabkhan 14 Oct 17 The 2017 Nobel Peace Prize Winner has said Donald Trump is “igniting new conflict rather than reducing the risk of nuclear war” after the President’s announcement to withhold certification of the Iran nuclear deal.

The International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (Ican), the 2017 Nobel Peace Laureate, strongly criticised Mr Trump’s decision, who in his speech condemned Iran as a “fanatical regime”.

Speaking out against the move, Beatrice Fihn, the executive director of Ican, said Mr Trump’s move was a reminder of the immense nuclear danger facing the world.

“The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) is a demonstration of how well diplomacy ccan work, and like the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, it reflects the urgent global imperative to eliminate nuclear weapons and the grave threat they pose,” Ms Fihn said. 
“President Trump’s attempt to disrupt the Iran deal, despite the fact that the IAEA has repeatedly certified that Iran is complying with its terms, is a jarring reminder of the immense nuclear danger now facing the world and the urgent need for all states to prohibit and eliminate these weapons.”

“If ever there were a moment for nations to declare their unequivocal opposition to nuclear weapons, that moment is now. There is an urgent need to strengthen existing and develop new norms against the use and possession of nuclear weapons by joining the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons,” she added.

October 14, 2017 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment

Solar power juggernaut is catching Australia by surprise

Australia’s solar juggernaut is coming – quicker than anyone thinks, [excellent diagrams and graphs] REneweconomy By Giles Parkinson on 13 October 2017 It is perhaps not surprising that the fossil fuel industry has hit the panic button and is pushing hard for the Turnbull/Abbott Coalition government to dump the proposed clean energy target and replace it with something that might be called a coal energy target.

They can see what’s coming – and there is probably no better way to describe it than a solar juggernaut.

The fact that solar will become the dominant energy source appears to be under no doubt, even the International Energy Agency admits it. And the CSIRO and AEMO appear to be in agreement that even behind the meter solar will account for around half of all demand by the 2040s or 2050s.

But what if it happened a lot quicker than that? Australia’s grid prices have jumped again to absurdly high levels, and this has lit a fire under the rooftop solar market, which will be followed by a major push by corporate buyers into the large-scale market. The solar sector could boom in ways not previously imagined.

 Huon Hoogesteger heads Smart Commercial Solar, a company specialising in rooftop solar for businesses that has experienced a doubling in demand in the last year or so, and a three-fold increase in the current year. He can’t see it slowing down.

At this week’s All-Energy Australia conference he was asked to speak about the implications of a continued solar boom in the Australian energy market, and what it means for incumbent fossil fuel generators, and others – particularly the storage industry. It was a fascinating insight.

First of all, it should be noted that Hoogesteger focused only on solar – so his observations take no account of the 4.5GW of wind energy already in the market, and the likely doubling of that capacity in coming years (particularly as it defies doubters and matches the falling cost of solar)………

Hoogesteger says most forecasts are based around a continued linear uptake of solar, that puts the country’s capacity at about 21GW in the mid 2030s……… Base on his experience, with a near doubling of just rooftop installations, the massive investment in large-scale solar, and the technology’s falling costs, along with high grid prices, he says it could happen a lot quicker than that……http://reneweconomy.com.au/australias-solar-juggernaut-is-coming-quicker-than-anyone-thinks-70985/

October 14, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, solar | Leave a comment

Trump accuses Iran of spreading “death, destruction and chaos around the globe”

Iran nuclear deal: Trump decertifies Obama-era agreement and accuses Tehran of spreading ‘death and chaos’ The President’s more confrontational strategy toward Iran is likely to complicate relations with European allies, Independent UK,  Alexandra Wilts Washington DC, 14 Oct 17   Donald Trump has struck a blow against the 2015 Iran nuclear agreement – in defiance of other world powers – by choosing not to certify that Tehran is complying with the deal.

During a speech at the White House, Mr Trump accused the “fanatical regime” in the Iranian capital of spreading “death, destruction and chaos around the globe” as he again called the nuclear pact “one of the worst” agreements the US has ever entered into.

However, he stopped short of scrapping the agreement altogether, saying he wanted his administration to work with Congress and other nations to address the “deal’s many serious flaws”. ……Federica Mogherini, the EU’s foreign policy chief and one of the deal’s chief negotiators, said the agreement will remain valid regardless of Mr Trump’s decision. ……

The move by Mr Trump was part of his “America First” approach to international agreements which has led him to withdraw the United States from the Paris climate accord and the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade talks and renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement with Canada and Mexico……

Mr Trump’s more confrontational strategy toward Iran is likely to complicate relations with European allies while strengthening ties with Israel.A vocal opponent of the agreement when it was signed, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu welcomed Mr Trump’s “courageous” decision.

“I congratulate President Trump for his courageous decision today. He boldly confronted Iran’s terrorist regime,” the prime minister said in a video statement he released in English.

But both UK Prime Minister Theresa May and French President Emmanuel Macron this week had tried to persuade Mr Trump to re-certify the deal. Ms May has called the agreement “vital”, while Mr Macron has said it is “essential for peace”. …….

Russia’s foreign ministry said there was no place in international diplomacy for threatening and aggressive rhetoric such as that displayed by Mr Trump and said such methods were “doomed to fail”, in a statement issued after Mr Trump’s speech……

ohn McLaughlin, a former acting CIA director under Republican President George W Bush, called the decertification of the Iran deal one of Mr Trump’s “worst decisions”.

The decision “feeds Iran hardliners, splits allies, shreds US credibility, roils congress [and is a] gift to Russia,” he wrote on Twitter. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-politics/iran-nuclear-deal-donald-trump-decertifies-agreement-2015-policy-obama-a7999451.html

October 14, 2017 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment