Zero Carbon Australia Sydney Launch Event Video with Bob Carr and Malcolm Turnbull

Launch event including addresses by Bob Carr, Malcolm Turnbull, Scott Ludlam and Beyond Zero Emissions

Link to Malcolm Turnbull Youtube Excerpt

Thanks to Maryella Hatfield from The Future Makers & UWS Media Production Students; Ben Weaver & Matt Grech (School of Communication Arts, UWS) for providing footage of the event. Full transcript below.

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Transcript

Quentin Dempster:

We welcome our guest speakers tonight, we've got a packed program. We've got the Honourable Malcolm Turnbull; Bob Carr; now introducing Senator Scott Ludlam from the Greens in Western Australia, he's not up for re-election this half-senate, so he can get over to the Eastern states; we've got Matthew Wright the Chief Executive Officer of Beyond Zero Emissions and a driving force behind this publication, the research and the advocacy; Alan Jones, welcome from London, Alan is the Chief development officer Energy and Climate Change. On this side we've got a panel of experts who are going to, in front of you, critique this hypothesis that's been put up about Zero Carbon Australia. Dr Keith Lovegrove, Solar Thermal Group Leader, Australian National University; Lane Crockett, general manager Australia Pacific Hydro, Professor Robyn Batterham, former Chief Scientist of Australia, and Roger Dargaville, Energy systems Analyst University of Melbourne.

Ladies and gentleman we have a visionary discussion and debate ahead, eight days from an Australian national election, which has plonked the greatest moral challenge of our times motherless last on the political agenda. This is Australia, we're standing in it. But the United States isn't much better it seems. I went to a news conference with the great Nobel Prize winning economist Joseph Stiglitz last Friday in Sydney and he bagged Australia for not having the foresight to move on domestic laws to put a price on carbon through an ETS, an Emissions Trading Scheme. Japan has one, Europe has one, including the United Kingdom, New Zealand has one. While China doesn't have one, it was pumping 34 billion dollars, in 2009, into renewable energy technology, more than any country in the world and double the investment in the United States. China is now selling renewable energy technology, solar, and soon wind turbines to the rest of the world. I protested that while Professor Stiglitz was making Australians feel guilty, what about the US, where the Carey Leadman carbon price legislation was effectively abandoned by the Congress. It's too hard apparrently, given high unemployment in the United States, and the de-leveraging still underway post the Global Financial Crisis. Professor Stiglitz acknowledged the point, apologised for the United States' recalcitrance and emphasised that the United States needs to make the paradigm shift to a low carbon future as a fundamental way to lift itself out of its current economic malaise. So says the winner of the Nobel prize. But still I don't think anyone's listening in the United States and that adversarial constituency politics, with the predictable scare campaigns about higher electricity prices are in full force.

I'm sorry neither the Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, nor the alternative prime minister, Tony Abbott are with us tonight, but the discussion here, and a stimulating debate it will provoke about a zero carbon Australia will get, as we journalists say, "into the ether". As you can tell, this discussion is not in the mainstream of political debate in this Federal election campaign, so we've got a panel of political pariahs, but as Marge Simpson once said, "there's no shame in being a pariah". Please welcome Malcolm Turnbull. **Audience Applause**

Malcolm Turnbull:

Well thank-you very much Quentin, I'm priviledged to be categorised as a pariah here tonight.
**Audience laughter**

You know, It's an interesting thing, Quentin made the point that this issue, this issue of clean energy and climate change has not been at the forefront of this election. And Bob Carr just said to me a moment ago that he didn't think there were any media covering this meeting tonight, I don't know whether that's true or not. But it is remarkable that on a cold winters night this issue has managed to fill the town hall. And that tells you something *Audience Claps* that tells you something about the extent of the concern that Australians have about climate change and the interest in and hunger for information and knowledge about the way we can deal with it and the way we can move, as we must move, if we are to effectively combat climate change to a situation where all or almost all of our energy comes from zero or very near zero emissions sources. Now our response to climate change must be guided by science. The science tells us that we have already exceeded the safe upper limit for atmospheric carbon dioxide. We are as humans conducting a massive science experiment with this planet. It's the only planet we've got. We are dealing in scientific terms with enormous uncertainty. There is a tendency for people to point to the forecasts for the future, sea levels, temperatures, other impacts of climate change and say oh well you know they've over egged the pudding a little bit, it's probably going to be less dramatic than that. But we are dealing with uncertainty and it may well be and indeed there is considerable evidence, that it may well be that many of these forecasts that we've become so used to, in fact err on the conservative side. We are told that 2010 will be the warmest year on record since records began in the late eighteen hundreds. We know that the consequences of unchecked global warming would be catastrophic. We know that extreme weather events are occuring with greater and greater frequency and while it is never possible to point to one drought or one storm or one flood and say that particular incident is caused by global warming, we know that these trends are entirely consistent with the climate change forecasts with the climate models that the scientists are relying on. Just in the last month floods and landslides have killed thousands in Kashmir, Poland, Pakistan, Korea and China. Russia has lost at least 30% of its grain crop due to the worst fires in that countrie’s history. Now sometimes the task of responding to the challenge of climate change may seem too great, too daunting. It is a profound moral challenge, because it is a cross generational challenge. We are asking our own generation to make decisions; to make sacrifices, to make expenditures today so as to safeguard our children, their children and the generations that come after them. It truly requires us to think as a species, not just to think as individuals. We are not, as Edmund Burke reminded us so many years ago, like flies of the summer that just come and go without any knowledge of what went before and what will come after. We as a human species have a deep and abiding obligation to this planet and to the generations that will come after us **Audience Applause**

Now in order to do that, in order to discharge that obligation we must make a dramatic reduction in the world's greenhouse gas emissions. Now you can look at the targets, 50% the common sort of rubric rule of thumb is to cut emissions by 2050 to a level equal to 50% or even lower than they were in 1990 or 2000. I promise you, you cannot achieve that cut, you cannot achieve it without getting to a point by mid-century where all or almost all of our stationary energy, that is to say energy from power stations and big factories and so forth comes from zero emission sources. The mathematics simply will not get you there, the arithmetic, not as complex as mathematics. The arithmetic will not get you there unless you can do it. And so technology is of absolutely vital importance.

Now I want to congratulate Matthew and all the authors and collaborators on this report. This is a fantastic piece of work. Many people will look at it and they'll say it's too good to be true. And we all know that often when things are too good to be true, they probably are. But let me give you one piece of data, one fact, one insight which should give you encouragement as you read this report. You'll see that the key technology that this project relies upon is concentrated solar thermal power. As you know the great challenge with renewable sources of energy; solar and wind in particular, is that they are intermittent. So what do we do when the sun isn't shining and the wind isn't blowing. How do we store that power. There's a very detailed discussion that the authors will go through with you tonight, and I won't even begin to canvas it. But there is the ability with concentrated solar thermal power stations to use the suns energy to superheat a substance, in this case molten salt, that will hold its heat for long enough to be able to continue to generate steam and hence energy after the sun has stopped shining or during or day after day of rain. So there is a real opportunity there, with that technology, to generate baseload power from solar energy something of a holy grail.

Now there are some small plants in operation that are doing just that now and there are a number of much larger plants that are about to be commissioned. But you might still say, not unreasonably, look this has not really been proven at a big industrial scale and you'd probably be right. But let me say this to you, concentrated solar thermal is a more proven technology than clean coal is. *Audience applause* Now when I was your environment minister, I spent a lot of your taxes on technologies designed to reduce our emissions including clean coal, including solar energy, including technologies to economically store electricity so that renewable sources of energy could provide baseload power, but one of the things and it's a sobering thing to bear in mind and those of us who follow the literature on clean coal would be aware of this, that despite all of the money and all of the hope that has been put into carbon capture and storage there is still, as of today, not one industrial scale coal fired power station using carbon capture and storage, not one. Now this is a frightening prospect because if you look at the work that is done by the International Energy Agency or any number of bodies or think tanks that study how we can model our way to a low emissions future, clean coal is a very big part of the assumption and while I believe as a matter of prudence we should continue to invest and pursue that technology, you do start to get something of a sinking feeling as you contemplate the fact that the hope of the side has not yet stepped onto the field to play his first game, it's a real challenge. So all of that underlines, firstly, don't be too skeptical about this, this is a good piece of work and the most radical technology in it is far from unproved. Secondly lets remember governments should not be picking technologies. It's tough enough for the private sector to pick technologies. It's almost invariably the case that governments will get it wrong, that is why in the long term and really sooner rather than later, we must have a price on carbon.
**Audience applause**

We need to send that price signal to the market that encourages the step changes in technology that will transform our economy and it may be that concentrated solar thermal wins the day, it may be that super efficient photovoltaics sprint ahead, it may be, despite my rather gloomy prognosis, it may be that carbon capture and storage suddenly leaps into the fore or it may be that they all have a role to play but without that carbon price you will not and can not unleash the ingenuity, the infinite ingenuity of millions of people around the world who once they know what the rules are, once they know what the price is, will then start to work to ensure that they have presented to us and to the world the technologies that enable us to move to that low emission future. Government support for innovation and investment in clean stationary energy is important, particularly at the early stages. It is much more important to focus on cutting edge technologies as to provide support for research into the basic science than with appallingly designed policies such as the recent cash for clunkers policy which delivers carbon abatement at a price almost $400 a tonne. I mean it is really a mockery of a climate change policy. Now we must give the planet the benefit of the doubt, we must act now. Now the coalition as you know, no longer supports a market based mechanism to put a price on carbon and I regret that, none the less it has pledged if elected to introduce policies which by purchasing carbon offsets has the potential to meet the 2020 target of a 5% reduction from 2000 levels. On the other hand, and this is I guess the depressing prospect, the Labor party which was elected in 2007 on a platform of meeting the greatest moral challenge of our times now has no policy and sadly nothing more than what appears to be a notice for a meeting.

No leadership and no conviction. I want to congratulate Matthew again and all his team for this extraordinary piece of work. It is very important work. It provides the most comprehensive technical blueprint yet for what our engineers, our scientists can begin to do for us tomorrow. I commend them for their work, we're deeply indebted to you all for this work and I encourage them and others to take note of this and to build on it as we work together, I trust, to a zero emission future, we know, is absolutely essential if we are to leave a safe planet to our children and the generations that come after them. Thank-you very much
**Audience Applause**

Quentin Dempster:
Thanks very much Malcolm; without any further ado, you all know him, Bob Carr.
**Audience Applause**

Bob Carr:
I don't believe in clean coal. Where the power stations are in New South Wales, coal fired power stations, there aren't any empty aquifers. Clean coal is not an option or a solution there. **Audience Applause**

I think we should stop wasting time on it and money. Too much money has gone into it. As that comment indicates, I'm not here to speak for my party tonight, although I'll do that at eight PM at Berowra, where I'm supporting the Labor party candidate in the seat up there - hope springs eternal, and I'm still something of a party hack. But on this issue, I've got to say, there's no issue more important, I welcome any allies. If anyone stands up, whatever their political background, to the left or to the right of me, and says "climate change, induced by humans, is the reality of how we live at this time, and it is a horrible threat to our species", then I count that person an ally of mine. **Audience applause**

And I want to sit down and work in any forum, citizens assembly or climate commission, any forum, and talk constructively about a way through, and that's the spirit in which I'm speaking to you tonight. Paul Ehrlich fondly regarded by many of you I would hope, came here August 1971, and spoke on Monday conference, the ABC program, interviewed by Robert Moore and he said, when asked a question, from the audience who referred to an article in Nature, about the prospect that the ice on the planet was melting, he said: "There is a lot of attention to this. It has got a lot of us very worried. We don't know where the science is going, it might be making the planet colder for a while, it might be making it hotter. This was, and I tracked it down at an ABC transcript, the first mention of climate change in the popular media in Australia. August 1971. Since then, we've doubled the planet's population. We've doubled the number of people clinging to the surface of the Earth and a huge increase in the power required to heat and cool them and drive their vehicles and light their homes. This is, bear this in mind, since December last year, when the ETS legislation was defeated in the senate, there'd been three substantial reports that have confirmed the reality of human induced climate change, that have confirmed the rise in the Earth's temperature and the locking up of energy in the world's oceans. Three reports. And this myth about "climategate" has been dispelled by what has been two or three inquiries, exhonorating the scientists and their behaviour. I'd like to read that in the Australian media, especially from some of the Climate change deniers who've got a lot of space on editorial pages. **Audience Applause**

Can governments make decisions, in the face of public concern over the cost of living, the cost of electricity bills? I think they can and my experience as a mere provincial politician on this, gives me a bit of hope, a bit of optimism. In New South Wales introduced, and Quentin Dempster was the only journalist who took an interest in it, we introduced the first carbon trading scheme in the world. It literally is, it's called the G-Gas scheme, and it required power utilities in New South Wales, if they exceeded emissions, per head of customer base, to buy offsets. The interesting thing was that we designed offsets that had to be rigorous, that were genuine. Not planting any old trees, but planting species on land reserved for forestry activity, trees never to be logged, that would hold carbon, the carbon measured, on an annual basis, locked up forever in those trees. We made it work. It did add to electricity bills in New South Wales and the process oversighted(oversaw?) by the independent pricing tribunal, we made it sellable, politically, from doing that. The World Bank listed it as the world's first, not one of the first but the world's first carbon trading scheme. I don't know why, after the blocking of the ETS in the Senate, the Federal government didn't pick that up and render it a national scheme. It only applies to the stationary energy sector, but it's better than nothing. And what we're ending up with now, because of what the senate did in December, is nothing, when it comes to the challenge Malcolm left us with, and that is putting a price on carbon, because this terrific report and the challenge it represents to Australians, won't go forward unless we price carbon. We've gotta do it. If you look at a graph of, at the present time, the price of cheap Australian coal, it renders coal fired power down there. (gestures at waist height) Dead cheap. You get to wind, gas is there (shoulder height), wind is there (nose height), solar is an actual outlier on the graph (raises hand). And until we bring the price of that coal up here (raises other hand), we don't make the others competitive. A pricing mechanism has gotta be part of this discussion. Ok, the Senate blocked passage of an ETS in December, and immediately Santos cancelled plans for a gas fired power station in Victoria, that would have been 70% less polluting, in greenhouse terms, than a coal fired power station. And Hazelwood, the most polluting power station in Australia, got another lease of life. Hundreds of millions of planned investment in renewables and carbon-sink forests was cancelled with the defeat of the ETS. Now these things can go on forever, until the parties in the Senate get together and work out a way of pricing carbon, and selling it to the Australian people, we're not going to find a way of elevating these technologies. They will continue to be price-disadvantaged. And none of us want them to be price-disadvantaged, we want them to be viable. This is a challenging report. It does challenge us. It suggests the sort of moderate increase in bills, power bills, that would enable these technologies to come forward. And I urge it to be adopted by all parties in the political process in Australia as a basis for discussion.

A tax, or a trading scheme. Well, the advantage of a trading scheme is that the price goes up and down. With a tax, governments will be very reluctant to return to the parliament and increase it. The headlines, after every budget, "Carbon tax goes up again"? Listen, the political reality is you're more likely to get the price we want if it's dealt with on a market. It rises, it falls, but investors look at that and they think "we don't know where it's going to go next, it would be crazy to put money into coal fired power". Lets go for the clean alternatives. Let me just urge you to think about these things. It would be easy to seek applause tonight by not addressing the economic issue, but that would be, and I congratulate Malcolm for talking about a price on carbon, Malcolm is absolutely right. You don't get the transition until you price carbon. Governments cannot pick winners. There is a limit to what you can achieve by subsidies, although they have their place, and so does regulation.

I'll deal very quickly with some of the issues in the Federal election campaign. I've got some hope that new regulations for power stations, talking about the role of regulation, will send a big message to investors, that it's worthless to invest in more coal fired power in Australia. The Prime Minister has announced new regulations for existing, as well as new power stations, and at least the threat of being forced to adopt new technologies, on clean coal, will deter investment in it. My reservations about clean coal are that I don't think it's going to work. If the government says you can't build a power station without accommodating it, investors won't flock to put money into coal fired power. I think the day of coal fired power in New South Wales is over. **Audience Applause** I've urged on my successors in New South Wales, you might scoff at this, but I did have some success with the river red gums, I've urged on my successors in New South Wales to make a bold declaration on the eve of the next State election "we will not build another coal fired power station in this state, or allow one to be built". I'm proud to be the leader of the first government anywhere in the world to have rejected a development application for a power station, I think it was called Redlands in the Hunter Valley, to have rejected it on the grounds of it's greenhouse impact. Not other environmental considerations, but it's greenhouse impact. I look forward to that bold declaration that there will be, in this state, no more coal fired power.

Citizen's assembly, I recognise the cynicism, I recognise the skepticism. But just think of this. If the Citizen's assembly heard Ross Garnaut, and other experts, argue that we need a price on carbon and the ice is already melting on this planet, surely the people who volunteered to serve on that assembly would say "let us have legislation to put a price on carbon. Let us have legislation to do it and let us do it within the next parliament, not the parliament after. So, let's hope that good people, good Australians, opting to give up a lot of their time to hear debate on this, and to hear from experts and consider arguments about the carbon pollution reduction scheme will say that's the way we want to go, and liberate a re-elected Gillard government to say "we've heard the people, and we will legislate on this front in this parliament, not wait for the parliament after".

Listen, we've got to show leadership. Australia is one of the richest countries in the world. Rich because of this surfeit of cheap carbon energy that we've inherited. This ridiculous argument that we've got to wait for China and India to show the way is an insult to our intelligence. We are rich, we can show the way. **Audience Applause**

The ice is melting. Every ecosystem on the planet is under threat. They're clearing the Amazonia to make way for shopping malls and urban sprawl. This is crazy. This is a lunatic experiment that we're engaged in. We've gotta price carbon, we've got to get investment steered away from more coal fired power. This is an inspiring report that challenges all of us to think how the transition can take place. Remember those words of Bill Clinton. The Stone Age didn't end because the world ran out of stone; it ended because humans got smarter. Thank you. **Audience Applause**

Quentin Dempster:
Thanks Bob. All the way from Western Australia, please welcome Senator Scott Ludlam, from the Greens.

Scott Ludlam:
Thank you. Well it's my good fortune and priviledge to be the last of your political speakers before we throw to the engineers and the people who we are actually going to be asking to build this technology. It's wonderful that you've all come out tonight, I heartily concur with Quentin's comments at the outset that this issue, considering how much it was at the forefront of the 2007 campaign, it's simply disappeared and I think that's a real sign that somebody's gone missing in the media, and something very sad has happened to the quality of our public debate, but here you all are, it looks like we've only just brought enough chairs and that absolutely gives us hope. I would also, as our previous speakers have done, really want to congratulate Beyond Zero and your partners on this extraordinary report which is going to be for sale for the very cheap price of $30 out the front. It's actually a really wonderful mix of urgency and hope and also pragmatism. They've deliberately only chosen technologies in here that are either commercialised already or so close to large scale base load commercialisation that you can model the economics. So we haven't gone off into some fusion fairy tale or imagined some sort of technology that doesn't exist yet is going to save us, here it is and I think the key importance of a document like this and the fact that you've all turned out to attend the launch is that it shows us that it can be done.

The most persistant and most dangerous myth that we've struggled with here in Australia is people who say oh well it can't be done, you can't do it. We'll wait for China to figure it out; we'll wait for India to figure it out. Maybe they'll get off their bicycles and we can all drive around in our four wheel drives a little bit longer, but actually it can't be done, even though we're sitting in Australia in what's been termed the Saudi Arabia of sunlight. We've got such extraordinary renewable energy resources right here in this country and you've seen over the last 10 or 15 years some of the best minds in engineering and science going overseas commercialising this technology, we're at risk that we're going to be buying it back and I think we can do a lot better than that. It still seems that the political discourse in this country has been, not withstanding the previous two speakers, but where have we been over the last couple of years and this debate in an election campaign in particular we are still suffering from being in the race to be the slowest, the race to be the last, the ones who will take the step back and wait for other people to take the risks and the Australian Greens have right from the word one saying this is not about risk, this is about opportunity. We're all very aware of what's happening North of the Arctic circle. We're very aware of what's happening on the Tibetan plateu, the risks that our farmers face from changing rainfall patterns and that's something for me that's very close to home, in the South West of Western Australia. But let's spend a little time talking about opportunity. That is what this document that we're launching tonight is doing.

I think that you could suggest that the 2007 Federal election was a referendum on a party that did nothing for 13 years, that watched that flight of ingenuity - we kept some of it, fortunately, and there's some folk here tonight to tell us about it, but really we sat on our hands and did nothing for 12 years. The 2010 election is a referendum on a party that thought it could get away with the appearance of doing something. And what we've seen with the CPRS and the foundation that we voted against that proposal was that it was a 22 billion dollar plan to smash our country into the iceberg at exactly the same speed that we're travelling at the moment. If you're going to put a carbon price into the system, then don't smother that price in 22 billion dollars worth of handouts to the people who need to feel that carbon price. **Audience Applause**

And so this proposal changes the debate, and so maybe the best thing that can happen is that it will provoke a debate about well if it's too cheap it'll be more expensive than that and it'll take longer and that is exactly the kind of debate that we want to be having to move us beyond that idea of it can't be done. I would have liked to have some of the remarkable wave energy generators that they're trialling off Fremantle Carnegie was putting has already put into the water; there'd probably be some players in the geothermal industry who would have liked to be at the table. There are some technologies that are only just behind the curve and I understand why they're not here, but I think in a way what it's done is it's painted a picture that if anything is conservative; we can do this if we choose to and we can do it right here, we're not going to be needing to be buying this technology from someone else. This is something that Australia absolutely can do. We do draw huge inspiration from what people have done overseas, but when does Australia get to lead? We've got Alan Jones here tonight who'se done extraordinary things in the UK, I'm continually scouring the 'net looking at the best and largest scale examples of zero carbon communities around the world and it's actually happening, they're just sprouting up all over the place, not just in the obvious places where you'd expect but everywhere and it's about time that we were at that table.

I might take issue a little bit with Bob's point about the carbon price being the only mechanism. It's an essential mechanism and is something that we need. We will be pushing very very hard if we're given the honour of balance of power in the Australian senate after the election of next week to put a carbon price into the system as rapidly as possible. It is essential, but it's not the only thing. We also need infrastructure. Australia is our proposal to take a lead in taking documents like this and modelling how much it's going to cost, how long it will take, and actually putting these plans into action and take the work that's been done here - this should have been done by the Commonwealth fifteen years ago, thank goodness these people have put it together, now we have it. Now the next stage is to put it into action.
**Audience Applause**

One of the things that you'll notice in here when you're going through it in detail is the central importance of energy efficiency and it's this invisible and hidden gift in energy policy that we have neglected for a long period of time. This plan's not possible unless we get very serious about the electricity that we don't need to generate in the first place and of course that is our hedge against rising electricity prices, if they come to pass, is that we can be using a lot less and wasting a lot less than what we're doing at the moment. We spend a lot of time in this campaign talking about electrified mass public transport, whether it be a bullet train linking the east coast capitals together, or modern 21st century light rail in our cities. Get our transport out of oil, in fact get it out of fossil altogether, get it into electricity and then we can run bullet trains on sunlight, it actually can be done, we can do it right here. The other thing of course, the key mechanism about getting renewables onto the grid is a feed-in tariff. Preferably a national, harmonised standard that actually pays you if you put PV on the roof it should pay you, it should pay you a price premium for taking that load off the grid and generating at home and that's the other way, apart from a carbon price, of paying people who do the right thing and generate electricity themselves, whether it's at the household scale, at a farm, or at a utility scale. That's the way that Germany got so much PV onto the rooftops in Western Europe was with a feed-in tariff and that's not rocket science, we've had a bill in the senate that's been parked there because we couldn't get major party support for it, and that's been there for more than a year. So from here on we simply cannot afford to take no for an answer and if the leadership can't be found in parliament, then civil society has to continue that push, because we can't always expect the light to come from Capital Hill, that's why it's so important that you're all here tonight.

In the next parliament we really do need to shake things up and that's why I'm saying that, as a person who is in there, is that we can't hear you. The corridors are crawling with coal lobbyists and the gas industry and all sorts of special vested interests who managed to neuter the CPRS, we're not hearing you, we need you to make more noise. **Audience applause** We really look forward to working with you all, whether it be the crew who are working out how to close down Hazelwood and some of the dirtiest power stations on the planet, the farmers who are trying to protect their countryside and the Darling Downs from being overrun by coal mines, the business groups and the engineers who just want to get cracking and get this stuff built, we really look forward to working with all of you. The people who say it can't be done need to get out of the way of those who are doing it. Thank you very much. **Audience applause**

Quentin Dempster:
Thankyou, thankyou senator. Now we're going to hear from the man who'se been the driving force behind tonight's evening, tonight's presentation: Matthew Wright is the Executive Director of Beyond Zero Emissions, he's going to outline the Zero Carbon Australia Stationary Energy Plan and it's analysis that it is technically possible for Australia to reach 100% renewable energy within a decade, and the technology to achieve the transitions is commercially available now and as I said we're going to critique his presentation later. Matthew Wright.

**Audience applause**

Matthew Wright
Thankyou Quentin, thank you to our previous speakers, the Honourable Malcolm Turnbull, Bob Carr, the former premier of New South Wales, Senator Scott Ludlam, thank you to Alan Jones and the City of Sydney who've been so gracious to put this event on for you, to sponsor this event tonight. So I'm obviously the Executive Director of Beyond Zero Emissions, I'm one of the people behind this report, there's more than thirty people behind it, and a whole lot of other driving forces, so I'd like to thank all those people who've made this possible because I certainly couldn't have done anything near this on my own. So this is the Zero Carbon Australia Stationary Energy Plan, it's about 100% renewable energy, we've chosen a decade as a time frame, I'll tell you about that in a bit, but basically it shows you a project management timeline that you can model around, that you can show whether you have the labour, resources, all the things required, you can line all the ducks up and make it happen. On the climate science, you've all heard about the Arctic ice situation and Wieslaw Maslowski, he's the lead oceanographer in the US Navy, he says that there's a possibility that the Arctic sea ice cover in the summer of 2013 could be completely gone, that means that something that reflects normally 90% of light radiation back out into space would be absorbing the heat of an area the size of Australia. Now if that eventuates, in such an early timeframe, you've got to worry about the stability of Greenland, behind me at the bottom of the chart and if you get stability problems with Greenland well that's going to affect international shipping and sea levels. So, not to dwell on that, the Potsdam Institute and the German Chancellor Angela Merkel's advisor on climate change, Professor Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, he's done modelling around a carbon budget where each country has a per-person, per-capita budget out to 2050, how much emissions they can put up into the atmosphere, and for the USA they've modelled, which has very similar per-capita emissions to Australia, they need to be at zero emissions by 2020 if everybody has an equal budget and that's just for a 67% chance of not exceeding two degrees celcius.

Now, I wouldn't have hopped on an aeroplane to come up from Melbourne to Sydney if there was only a 67% chance of getting here, but it's a lot better than doing nothing at all. So in order to address the problem, we got together a whole lot of people who wanted to roll up their sleeves and get the job done; we put together the Can Do team. The Can Do team is a group of scientists, engineers, PHDs, chemical engineers, mechanical engineers, electrical engineers, they work in industry, regulatory, they work in academia, and the team put together this plan, which is a plan about getting the job done and how we can get on with it. We decided that if you've got science that says this is a serious problem, then you need answers that are serious, and that's what the Zero Carbon Australia plan is.

So in terms of ten years, some more rationale around that, Al Gore says that a promise to do something forty years from now is universally ignored; the only way you can hold a steady aim and hit your target is if you have a time frame that humans can get their head around and that's ten years. So that was when Al Gore talked about 100% clean electricity and ending depend on foreign oil and he started that campaign in the US a couple of years ago. Likewise in Stanford University, the head of engineering, Mark Jacobson, in the November edition of Scientific American they detail his plan which is for 100% renewable energy for the globe, now it's a much higher level than ours, but the globe is quite difficult to model, but that's all to be achieved by 2030 under his plan. Now Australia, being a leading OECD country, but also being a high per-capita emitter, achieving our goal by 2020 fits well within the Stanford University target. So therefore, with our plan, which is endorsed by Mark Jacobson, along with the International Energy Agency has also endorsed it and the former Chief Scientist, Robyn Batterham, who's sitting to our left, the former Chief of Defense, Peter Gratian, I guess the reason we chose to go with 2020 is because we need to get there, that's answering the science, and that it was a time frame that we could line up all the resources around.

So with energy efficiency, we deliver not only the current electrical services, but we deliver the heat supplied by gas for industrial purposes for commercial and domestic space and water heating, you can see that detailed in yellow, also in red, the fuel switching of the transport sector, so taking our transport sector today that's heavily dependent on oil imports and growing all the time, Kerry O'Brien on Tuesday night said just how much of an impact that's going to be on the Australian purse, in fact some estimates that we could be importing up to 65 billion dollars of oil by 2015 if the price of oil hits 200 dollars a barrel. So it's a very serious impost on Australian people, without any services. That's effectively a tax and you don't get any schools, hospitals, roads, anything for it. So you can see (points to image on screen) electrical services as they are today, they're in blue, we actually reduce the amount of energy delivered for the same electrical services today but we still come in at 2020 at a higher per-capita energy use than Germany. And Germany is a modern economy, it has minerals processing, it has aluminium smelters, it has a larger industrial manufacturing base than we have, and they're not living in a cave, unless you call a Mercedes a cave. So I think we can quite safely go for that sort of energy efficiency and we don't even land in our model as low as the Germans are on a per head of population electrical use. You can see that our electrical consumption , electricity supply actually grows 40%, that's because we've actually fuel-switched the gas and fuel-switched the electric transportation fuels.

So Solar Thermal with storage is our key technology and it works by having a field of mirrors, the field of mirrors, a sea of mirrors surround the central tower. A cold tank of salt, is 290 degrees cold, it's a fluid, is pumped up the tower, it receives the light of the sea of mirrors which is concentrated at the top of the tower, and then the heat is banked down the bottom in the other tank. Anytime day or night, whenever you need electricity generation, you don't have to do it in the middle of the day, you just run water past the salt, it flashes to steam, and then that drives a conventional turbine, the same turbine in a coal, gas or nuclear plant. So this is 24 hour solar power, it's solar power around the clock, it's solar power all through the night. This technology was developed over 30 years, 70s, 80s, 90s in Spain, France, the USSR and the USA. This is a key power plant (points at image), this is a US department of energy centre, National Laboratories proving plant for commercial operation. This was running in the 90s for three years exactly like a commercial plant. It was done in conjunction with Lockheed Martin, Bechtel and Boeing and the US department of energy. So today there's two companies that have a commercial offering of this technology, SENER, the biggest engineering firm in Spain, and ACS Cobra is building it. ACS Cobra is an interesting company, it owns Hocktief** in Germany, which owns Leighton Holdings, which is Australia's biggest construction company, and Leighton is also Asia's biggest construction company. The other link to Australia is Worley Parsons, which is doing all the engineering for the American company that sells this technology, directly licenced from the US DOE(Department of Energy), that's Solar Reserve, and Worley Parsons is a great Australian engineering company, is the engineering company doing their work. This is all stuff we can do in Australia.

So here you can see at the top, one version of the technology, parabolic trough plants, seven and a half hour storage, that means that when the sun goes down these plants can run flat out after dark for seven and a half hours, if you throttle the turbine back you can run for many hours longer. At the bottom, you can see Hemisolar** it's one of the molten salt power towers that are being built, it actually runs fifteen hours after dark, so it's a 24 hour baseload solar thermal plant. In Spain, there's 20 billion dollar rollout to 2013. They're building 60 power plants, it's a serious industrial scale-up, it's way further than the Australian government's Solar Flagships program which has recently been de-funded 200 million dollars to help cash for clunkers and it's aiming to build one or two solar thermal plants by 2015 or longer. This is a real move to renewable energy (points at screen) and Spain is going to hit a massive amount of renewable energy by 2025, something like 46% of the Spanish economy will be renewable.

Under our plan, 60% of Australia's energy will be solar thermal with storage and that will include 12 solar regions, and each of those will have 19 power towers. If you think of Hazelwood, it has 8 modules of 188 MW each that makes up a power plant, we have a solar region which has 19 modules and they're 217 MW each. They're all air-cooled. Wind power; 40% of the power supplied in our system is from wind, it's the cheapest form of renewable energy so it's an economic dispatch, the first dispatch. We have 23 sites modelled, of those 23 sites they have about 270 or some sites have 400 wind turbines. It's 6500 turbines total will provide 40% of Australia's energy under our model by 2020.

Obviously we have to upgrade the grid. Everyone shies away from spending money on the electricity grid, we're talking about a 92 billion dollar upgrade to the transmission system, we designed that with Sinclair Knight-Mertz, the major engineering firm here in Australia, they did a review of it and found that it was technically feasible and uses proven technology from around the world. This is the national grid we could have in 2020, 2022 or 2025, whenever we want to do it by, if we choose to. The twelve solar regions, the transmission, the 23 wind sites; you can see that overlaid on the old grid.

Here's the modelling that we did; we did it over a number of years, using real Australian grid data, scaled up to our 2020 demand. You can see in the blue the wind coming in and out more variably, you can see the energy you can get from the dispatchable solar thermal with storage that can come on and off as you need it, and the yellow section there shows power that we could have provided but didn't need to. In the middle there's some green, that's biomass co-firing of the molten salt tanks. We've got a small contingent of biomas co-firing for the winter, when our modelling suggested that there was slightly less correlation of wind and solar than what we needed to keep the salt tanks topped up. We think that's possibly a limitation of our modelling because we don't have hub-height wind data for New South Wales, Queensland and WA, so in future versions of the plan we'll be able to show much less variability in the wind and we'll also be able to show possibly that you don't need any biomass co-firing.

In terms of what this is about, getting the job done in ten years, you've gotta think of a big construction job and a big manufacturing job. We build 300,000 cars a year, we buy a million cars a year. We're talking about 600,000 heliostats, which is the mirrors, per annum, which is a small part of building a modern car. We're talking 6,500 wind turbines, they can be manufactured in four facilities, like this one in Portugal, pictured, it already operates, it took a year to get going.

Here you can see our labour requirements, we did detailed labour and resource requirements for the operations and maintenance of the current domestic energy sector we're talking 20,000 workers, we replace and upgrade that to 40,000 employees to run this sector. We also have a manufacturing workforce to build components and parts, which can be based in the Hunter and LaTrobe vallies, so it's quite do-able in the context of jobs and employment in the Australian economy.

In terms of resources, concrete, it's about seven percent of the concrete we currently use in the Australian economy, so we'd either grow our concrete production by seven percent or find savings. It's about 20 percent of our steel production onshore, but if you include our net steel from iron ore exports it's just a sliver. We did detailed assessments for silver and the other commodities as well, that was just some examples. Our cost reduction curves are from the US Department of Energy and Seargent and Lundy. We've shown that you need actually, if you're going to have a carbon price, you need complimentary measures to get those solar thermal plants built early and to bring the price down. That's been demonstrated internationally with photovoltaic in Germany and with wind in Denmark and Germany and Spain, that if you build out these renewable technologies and you scale them up, the price comes down and we show that in our plan. If you've got the equivalent of about 1 and a quarter base** for the power plants installed, then globally the cost of solar thermal storage will be down to about the cost of wind, and once you've got the equivalent of the full base that's installed globally, you're down to the cost of new coal fired power generation. So it's about riding that cost-reduction curve with up-front subsidies, in effect feed-in tariffs do the job.

It 37 billion dollars a year, it's a bargain for a 100 percent renewable energy economy, that's the cost to the investment community. In terms of electricity prices, Quentin said it's the equivalent of eight dollars per household per week, and that's to buy into a 100 percent renewable energy economy. We've heard it can be done, we know it can be done and it's our choice whether we install a square meter of mirror surface and not burn 20 tonnes of coal. Another way to put it is if we choose not to install a square meter of mirror surface, every square meter we don't install, we're choosing to install 20 tonnes of coal. So I'd like you all to join with us, this has been a collaborative research effort, the University of Melbourne's team, plus we've got together people who've offered their services, most of them free of charge in order to get this happening, people to help us with communications, arranging, a lot of people put this event together and they did that off their own back, and also research. So if you'd like to get involved we'd welcome you, if you'd like to support us the University has set up a tax-deductible fund that can support the research and the further plans, the stationary energy, the transport, the industrial processes, the buildings plan, the land use change, forestry, agriculture, and replacing coal export revenue. Thanks.
**Audience applause**

Quentin Dempster:
Thanks Matthew, Zero Carbon Australia within ten years, it's an exciting vision. All the documentation and calculations and the arguments and the graphs are in the document that is available outside. Alan Jones is the chief development officer, energy and climate change, City of Sydney. Alan is world famous, he's come to Australia and been confronted with what goes on here. You'll remember he was instrumental in Woking council in the United Kingdom's massive greenhouse emission reductions from energy use, in transforming the carbon footprint of London; Alan Jones.

Alan Jones:
Thank you. I haven't got much time, so I'm going to launch straight in to what Sydney is doing, and I'll finish up with where I think this fits in with the Beyond Zero work. Sydneysiders know all about Sustainable Sydney 2030. The big hit that we're doing there to achieve those big greenhouse gas reductions is the green infrastructure plan. That's made up of five master plans, three of those are in contracts as we speak, trigeneration, renewable energy, alternative waste treatment. Decentralised water master plans, Sydney wide, recycled water network following the same infrastructure routes, trigeneration is currently out to tender, and the automated waste collection system which will see the refuse vehicles disappearing off the streets and save an awful lot of emissions in the process, we'll be putting that out to tender later in the year. A key target, you add the numbers up in Sustainable Sydney 2030, it comes to 100% local generation, 17% reduction in CO2 emissions, as a pathway to 100% reduction in emissions. We've done enough work now on the master plan to actually know where the low carbon zones actually are. This is the most detailed part of the work that we've undertaken. These are not just lines on the map; these are the physical places where energy is distributed and supplied around the city, these particular locations. From that we've been able to work out the electric heating and electric cooling which will come off or be displaced with zero carbon waste heat from local electricity generation. The trigeneration plans are also required to be run off renewable gases, which link into our other renewable energy and our alternative waste treatment master plan project. When you think about cities, and move away from what I call boiler in the basement projects, we have some trigeneration projects in the city, some of the buildings here in order for the developers to get their green star ratings, and they do reduce emissions and they do save energy and they're more energy efficient than coal fired power generation. But they're missing a trick: when you join buildings up together, you can achieve higher levels of efficiency. Instead of just supplying 15 to 25 percent of a buildings energy needs, as I showed in Woking and in London, you're up to about 125, 135 percent efficiency, able to running independent of the grid, and deep supply surplus power and trade across the local distribution network to balance out different energy loads.

In our energy master plan, one of the things I learned when I came to Australia was that when they talk energy they're talking electricity; I said hang on a minute, you're missing a trick here, there's an awful lot of stuff out there that could be converted into renewable gases. When we looked at this in London, when we looked at the area outside London into the agricultural and farming industries in particular, we found that there was not enough renewable gases wasted in landfill or burned or thrown away to generate enough gas, if supplied through decentralised energy, to supply more than two million homes, that's more than half the population of London. So there's actually a largeish renewable resource, even though we have large scale wind turbines in the Thames estuary just the London array alone is a 1000 megawatt system, so it just shows you just how much potential is out there, there's actually far more than we actually need, it's about getting the right mix of technologies. We looked at the City of Sydney, the city of Sydney could make itself pretty well self-sufficient as local polity organisation, but our targets also apply to the LGA(Local Government Areas) area as a whole, that's where the 330 megawatts come from for trigen, 150 megawatts for renewable energy. So we're going to have to go outside the city as well as putting renewable energy inside the city. Not any old where but specifically designed at close proximity to the city so that we make best use of the distribution and transmission networks. A range of technologies, some of which you've seen, we're a great believer in solar thermal concentration as well and we've certainly been approached by a number of developers looking to work with the City of Sydney on that. But also you have a huge marine resource. Marine current turbines, which are basically upside-down wind turbines generate electricity under water, again not intermittent, they can continue to generate energy. A whole range of renewable resources that you have in Australia, it just makes you wonder why you burn all this coal.

I was out at the Centrup region a couple of weeks ago, seventeen local forests, a huge rural area, used to be the food basket of Sydney, could become the renewable gas markets for Sydney. Could supply their own energy needs and have a substantial export of renewable gases into the city. I had the same situation in London, but these places tend to be remote from where you want the energy, so we came up with small scale liquification technologies, and as you see here, shifting the energy produces far more energy where it's actually needed than at some remote location. The other trick that you get with these advanced technologies, you can actually extract the water from waste. There's an awful lot of water in waste, and you know Australia is the driest continent on the planet, so generating renewable water as well as renewable gases is a key component of the city's green infrastructure plan. We're also not just doing that, it's a master plan, we're going to embed in our own master plan and operations, but also on a show that by doing principle, implementing real projects on the ground, the city's already reduced emissions by seventeen percent from a year ago and we're embarking on another massive energy efficiency and water program.

LED lighting, with that we've got something like 250 lights that we're trialling at the moment and our plan is to roll that out to all 8500 of the city street lighting that we're responsible for and convert that to energy efficient LED lighting. The results have shown that we can get up to 55% reduction in energy consumption and emissions just by simply switching from street lights that we have at the moment to energy efficient LED lighting. If you're wandering the streets at night 'round Sydney, have a look at Martin Place, that's LED lighting, and compare that with some of the lighting outside of Martin Place.

Tri-generation is a big one, we've just gone out to tender for that, we're doing that in three places, the three options, there's obviously the council owned option, we put all of our 200 properties into that tender, to give maximum opportunity to the tenderers to cross trade, and pretty much take the city of Sydney off the grid so to speak. The second option is through an esco type operation to do the same thing, and the third option, which is our preferred option, is a city-wide Sydney esco. Public private joint venture company to actually roll out the decentralised energy master plan.

We've also done quite a few renewable energy projects, relatively small scale, but we recognise that we needed to go much further with this, and so we've re-aligned our carbon offsetting, City of Sydney was the first local authority to become carbon neutral in Australia, but we're now investing our money into more cost effective carbon offsets and we're re-investing something like two million dollars a year for starters into a renewable energy program. These are the kind of projects we're now looking at, much bigger projects, public domain projects not just solar PV roofs but glass PV systems in public domain systems, and also putting solar photovoltaics on car parks so we can actually charge electric vehicles from zero carbon electricity rather than from the coal fired grid. Our first program will be a 12 million dollar program that's going to roll out something like 3000 kilowatts of solar PV on the city's buildings so that you won't, as Sydnesiders, as you wander round the city, as we saw in Woking and London, there's nothing like people seeing things happen on the ground that really gets people up and going and press towards change.

This just gives you an example of what two million dollars a year can do. We've actually achieved a 25 percent target by 2020 and if we carry on at that investment, 50 percent by 2030, well within the Sustainable City, over-achieve our targets. Of course this is just the start, I do believe the city will also put further funding into this sort of area. We are looking at solar thermal, so you may see a smaller scale version of that in the City somewhere soon, as well as other technologies that we're looking at.

You know, we've had a lot of debate about this report and we may debate whether the report has the right mix of technologies, whether there is an over-reliance on the grid, the role of energy efficiency, the hidden renewables, the role of decentralised energy or renewable gases. But at least this report has put something on the table about the need and the wherewithal to deliver 100 percent renewable energy to society in ten years. I reduced greenhouse gas emissions in Woking by 80 percent in fourteen years, made significant inroads into the sixty percent reduction in emissions targets in London, and am now setting out the delivery of 100 percent local energy target for Sydney. The city is doing all that it can to deliver huge savings in greenhouse gas emissions within its own LGA. It is time for others to step up to the mark and do the same thing.
**Audience applause**

Finally, if you were to ask me do I believe that a hundred percent renewable energy society could be delivered in ten years, the answer would be yes, absolutely. **Audience Applause** The barriers to this are not technical or economic, but regulatory, mindset and vested interests. Thank you.
**Audience applause**

Quentin Dempster:
Thanks Alan. I'm now going to pose some questions to our expert panel here, having heard the presentations, the political, technical and economic arguments and Matthew Wright's presentation. Doctor Keith Lovegrove is the Solar Thermal Group Leader, Australian National University. Keith, this is politically unsaleable, isn't it? 60 percent Matthew said, 60 percent of baseload power would come from solar thermal. Baseload power. Is that possible? Is that realistic?

Keith Lovegrove:
It is possible. The organisers posed that question for me and probably had a reasonable suspicion I might say yes, or they wouldn't have invited me ** Audience laughter ** So is it realistic to rely on solar thermal to meet baseload power. We've heard quite recently politicians say you can't do baseload power with solar, well you can. Is it realistic? Let me just say, as someone reasonably qualified in the field, that the analysis presented in the Zero Emissions report is sound. I think it's correct and valid analysis.

Quentin Dempster:
We note you stand by the report, yes.

Keith Lovegrove:
The realistic word is an interesting one, because really what the Zero Emissions team have done is said, well what if we went on a war footing and let's just pick one scenario and analyse it and see if one scenario would do it. Well the answer is, it does, but that actually begs the question there can be other scenarios and other mixes that actually gives you more flexibility and probably means it's technically easier, but the problem is the war footing assumption. In terms of the technical change you're looking at unrolling here it's well within the bounds of our society to do it but quite frankly we're not on a war footing, we're on a sit on the couch and watch tv footing in Australia these days. Short of putting Malcolm Turnbull in charge of the Federal Labour Party, I don't know how to change it. ** Audience applause **

Now if I could earn my dinner a little bit and talk to you about the technology there, some slides up there of concentrating solar thermal. Why is it that the Zero Emissions team have focussed in on this idea as the source of baseload power, what is it about this? First of all, on the bottom left there, you see the solar tower idea that they favour, it's not the only way and actually I'm with Malcolm on this, you probably shouldn't pick winners when you're making policy, it's great for scenario analysis. On the top left you see a variation that's called a trough concentrator, all of these things are different ways of using mirrors to make something hot. Once you've made something hot, basically you're using steam turbines to generate electricity, so it's the same technology used for most of the world's electricity; mostly coal, sometimes nuclear.

Quentin Dempster:
But still steam.

Keith Lovegrove:
But still steam, now the point is it's fairly easy to store something hot. Your hot water tank at home is a prime example. This hot molten salt system that we're talking about here is nothing much more than a glorified hot water tank, just higher temperatures. Because you're storing heat, which you can make into steam any time you choose, it's technically a pretty simple thing to do, but it's an integrated part of this system, so that it doesn't actually cost you in efficiency and capital costs so much and you could even configure the system with a smaller turbine to offset the cost. This is its advantage over, say, very large scale photovoltaic systems that make electricity and you say well how shall I store that. It's an awful lot of car batteries that'll cost you an awful lot of money. The thermal approach is built in. I've probably just about had my four minutes. There's the answer I suppose in as much as that is the plant that has been running for two years now, it's the world's first commercially run large scale plant with storage. You can run it 24 hours a day. Baseload by the way is a bit of a furphy, really what you want is the ability to dispatch. They chose to build 7.5 hours of storage because they decided in their market conditions that was optimal. They could have had twice as many tanks, three times as many tanks, had as much storage as they wanted. I'll leave it there.

Quentin Dempster:
Will Spain be dominated by this baseload solar thermal? Will the bulk of baseload in Spain come from solar thermal?

Keith Lovegrove:
In their power grid, as they get there?

Quentin Dempster:
Yes. Matthew put up that map of Spain...

Keith Lovegrove:
I think they're a long way from being 100 percent renewable in Spain, but they're heading that way, and clearly they've got the experience with this technology.

Quentin Dempster:
Can you answer that quickly Matthew? Spain; baseload.

Matthew Wright:
Spain's just started building a lot of power plants. In terms of wind, they're heading towards 25 percent of their power from wind by 2020. Solar thermal has obviously started a lot later than their wind program, so they're looking at something like a bit over five percent in this first rollout. They're going to continue their rollout, but they haven't got projeted figures to 2020, so it could be like ten, fifteen percent of their power, today it's natural gas, and a bit of nuclear which has been declining and some coal that has been declining a lot, it's gone from like sixteen percent five years ago down to twelve percent of their grid today.

Quentin Dempster:
Lane Crockett is the general manager of Australia Pacific Hydro; Lane, from an industry perspective, what are the opportunities and challenges posed by Zero Carbon Australia, this report?

Lane Crockett:
Thanks Quentin. I guess we'll start with the fact that it's wonderful that this report has been done because it starts to cut away at the furphy that it can't be done and I think one of the reasons that Australia is in the place that we are, that we only have a target for five percent reduction by 2020 and we don't even have the policies in place to get us to that rather insignificant target and the reason for that, one of the reasons for that, is that people have said that you can't do this with renewable energy alone. It's always given some industries and some political commentators an out. I think that it's fantastic that Beyond Zero Emissions have shown that it's technically possible. Just going quickly to the fact that they've chosen one particular scenario to model, I think that's obviously a very astute thing to do, I think the only thing you have to be careful about there is not to look like you're picking winners because there are an extraordinary number of different pathways that will get you to exactly the same point, and I s'pose I would mention geothermal and wave that I think was mentioned before earlier that geothermal for example is dispatchable power. Wave, while it's not dispatchable at all times is quite predictable.

This sort of report is always going to come up with some challenges. The grid's been talked about, significant investment required to be able to put a lot of renewable energy on to the grid. There hasn't been a lot of talk about the regulatory impediments and I know that sounds a little bit dull but even as a renewable energy company we've spent the last few years just trying to get an objective into the national electricity rules, for the rules to recognise that there is an objective to reduce emissions in the system. We can't even get that through. So you can see that that immediately causes a problem.

The other thing is the fact that what's being talked about here is a massive transformation in parts of our landscape in regional and rural Australia. We do find that when you start to change a landscape, that causes some issues in communities. Putting 6000 turbines out there over a short period is going to require a lot of engagement with communities and getting them on board with the fact that we're transforming this for a good reason. So there would be a lot of work required there.

It's been mentioned before and it is a key to it that at the moment we don't have the right parameters for investment at this level. We have the 20 percent renewable energy target by 2020, that's going to bring on about 20 billion dollars of investment in renewables in Australia over the next ten years, but what's being talked about here is much greater than that; that won't come without there being a strong price on carbon, and you probably need those complimentary measures as well which might either be an increased renewable energy target, or a feed-in tariff is another mechanism. But the opportunities obviously are jobs, renewable energy creates more jobs per megawatt-hour, I think on a per megawatt basis it's twice that of coal, they're safe places to work, so the investment in jobs in regional and rural areas is magnificent. If you have a vision to have a thriving, prosperous, clean economy in Australia in the future, that competes with the rest of the world, and a low-carbon constrained world, then this plan is the first step to get there.

Quentin Dempster:
Thanks very much Lane.
**Audience applause**

Professor Robyn Batterham was Chief Scientist of Australia from 1999 to 2005, he's now the Kernot** Professor of Engineering at the University of Melbourne, and the President of the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering. Robyn, as the former Chief Scientist of Australia, and privy to various types of energy production technologies, including Carbon Capture and Storage; do you think the mix, as selected by this plan that we've seen tonight, is plausible, it's a reasonable road-map forward?

Robyn Batterham:
Quentin, thanks for the question. This is really interesting stuff. You can come at it from a point of view that says could Australia be a renewable energy super-power, because we've got the sunshine, we've got the land area and so it goes on, we've got the deep geothermal most likely. You answer that sort of question by saying yes, so your next bit is exactly what's being looked at here, which says well how could you get there? I mean, what other kind of country in the world at the moment is tackling being 100 percent renewable in ten years? This is really a pretty brave target. What I see the advantage of this work is that it's shown that there is a plausible path, it doesn't require a whole pile of R&D, but of course R&D could speed up some of the developments that might be even better than the route that's selected. So this is really all about saying what do we want as our options going forward? Where's our long term goal? So I look at this, and I look at it, say from the Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering perspective, and we've done a whole pile of work on the economics of investing in different options and different mixes of options, and I've got to tell you that some things look pretty good, dare I say, before I get thrown out, nuclear and wind look quite good. Deep geothermal looks good, but it's not proven technology thank you very much, despite many years of effort.

And all of the above happens to look better, in economic terms, than carbon capture and storage, and I'll say it very quickly before anyone gets too upset. So this is a balancing act, it's do we want to end up being renewable energy superpower? Of course we do, why not? It's a very good future for Australia. How are we going to get there? Let me just say a quick point about the how are we going to get there. This work has shown a plausible path and it is technically and economically plausible. It turns out to be roughly three percent of GDP, and if you say that one quickly it doesn't seem much, but I've got to tell you that's an awful lot of money. Interestingly, just last week in the UK, a not dissimilar effort has been done and published, which comes out at two percent of GDP, and let's not split one percent of GDP between friends sort of thing, it's the same ballpark. So what we've got to do going forward into the future is move the debate somewhat from "wow that's a huge cost and can we do it in time and is it plausible" and the answer is, if we want to, yes it is. We've got to move the debate, as with the National Broadband Network, and get it off costs and on to what are the benefits and do we want those benefits, and what are we prepared to pay for it.

Quentin Dempster:
Thanks Robyn.
**Audience applause**

We're about to go into questions from the floor, I've got another question to Rodger Dargaville now, but just start thinking about questions from the floor, there are microphones here. I don't want any comment necessarily, but preparatory statements perhaps, so that we can have a half-hour or so of exchange of views, please think to whom you should direct your question. My final question is to Rodger Dargaville, he's an energy systems analyst from the University of Melbourne. Rodger, the Zero Carbon Australia plan looks at how an energy system can deal with variability in sunshine and wind, there's this baseload question again because the coal fired power station interests certainly raise that question about oh but it's no good for base load. Your research is in this area, what do you think of the analysis contained in this document?

Rodger Dargaville
Thanks very much for the question again. Most of that question has already been answered by my colleagues, so to avoid getting in the way of question time I'll keep my answer very brief. It's always been a key challenge with renewable energy to deal with this problem of variability and by designing systems that take into account the variability in wind and solar and the way that they co-vary in different parts, if you look at an entire country, you've got an enormous amount of flexibility in where the wind is blowing and where the sun is shining, and to combine those together in an optimal way, it is not an insurmountable task. The Beyond Zero Carbon Plan has done a fantastic job of showing one example of a scenario where this will work. At risk of saying there's a lot more work to be done to actually finesse this plan, I think we could keep on working on it forever, we actually need to start working on it and building it now. We can finesse it as we go, but I think the most important thing is to start building it. One important problem is that we actually have to do a transition from the current system. We can see what the future system will look like, we actually have to go from 95 percent fossil fuel to zero percent fossil fuel, and do that in a fashion that doesn't cost us too much and doesn't interrupt supply too much. But then I'd actually put out the challenge there that we go further, that Australia can be an energy exporter to the world, we can export electricity. If we actually build this grid looking even further into the future so that we have transmission lines, high DC lines going up into South East Asia, we can start really making a difference to the world in terms of carbon emissions, and becoming a power house and it becoming a huge industry for Australia.

Quentin Dempster:
Thanks very much Rodger.
**Audience applause**

As I said, we don't want speeches, we want comment, pertinent comment and forensic questions. You sir, right up the back...

Audience member:
Thank you. My question was, sadly, for three politicians

Quentin Dempster:
I'm sorry, Bob Carr and Malcolm Turnbull, there's a Federal election on aparrently, we've got Scott Ludlam here though

Audience member:
That's right, we've still got one, which I'm glad of, but I would much have liked to put it to three. I am not, by the way, a member of a political party, but the question has to do with political parties. A week or two ago the McNeil poll said that six out of ten Australians wanted a carbon tax. It seems that we can't get anywhere without one, in terms of what's been discussed tonight...

Quentin Dempster:
A carbon tax, or an ETS?

Audience member:
Well, I'm sorry, a price on carbon. In nine days, we have a referendum on just that question in that we have just one party that has unequivocably said that it is in favour of a price on carbon, and that is the party that stands with the fellow that is still here, the Greens. My civil engineer's calculations say that a sixty percent vote for the Greens in the Senate would place 29 Greens in our new senate

Quentin Dempster:
**Laughter**
Is this a question?

Audience member:
It is a question, for three politicians, it was whether they thought that a result like that, if a secular miracle was to occur,

Quentin Dempster:
**Laughter**
I'm sure Bob Carr and Malcolm will be voting for the Greens...

Audience member:
If six in ten that said they would like a carbon price were to vote that way, would such an impact change the mindset of all of the parliamentarians?

Quentin Dempster:
I think we can take that as a yes. Next - Sorry Scott, we've got no time.

Audience member:
I'd like to say that, several years ago, I was talking to a particular minister about renewable energies and I was informed that there was insufficient wind in New South Wales to justify wind turbines farms. Anyway, we've come a long way-

Quentin Dempster:
And now we're festooned with them...

Audience member:
Good, terriffic, fantastic. Now my question is, is there a possibility that we can introduce a bonds system, where we can actually buy bonds as we did in World War Two, in order to finance what we have in front of us today?

Quentin Dempster:
That's a funding mechanism. Alan Jones:

Alan Jones:
I wasn't expecting that question, but can I say that we actually looked at that in London, we called it a Climate Change bond, that was just before Boris got in unfortunately. So yes, if you think about it, if there's really that kind of support from Joe Public, they could just, government could get out of the way, Joe Public...

Quentin Dempster:
So you make some treasury paper, some bonds for the...

Alan Jones:
Well does it need to come from there? Local authorities have done this in the past, they've set up bonds for specific action, and certainly in other countries I've seen climate change bonds introduced...

Quentin Dempster:
And you get a low interest rate return, I'm sorry to be an investment advisor, you get a low interest...

Alan Jones:
The thing is that most people have got their savings in building society accounts or something like that, so the kind of interest rates that they would get from a climate change bond would be much better than that because they can't get access to the big financial markets

Quentin Dempster:
It's a good idea. Matthew:

Matthew Wright:
I actually wrote a piece for Ethical Investor magazine, it was called Pro-active Super and I was asking especially for young people who won't see their superannuation maturity for another 20, 30, 40 years, that they could actually choose proactive super, which is a product that doesn't exist unfortunately, and they wouldn't get any returns in the short term, ten, fifteen, years, and then they'd get the payback when we actually have to have moved to renewables and I think young people don't actually see Super as anything tangible and they'd be happy to make their Super activist Super.

Quentin Dempster:
Well, we'll get Paul Keating onto it. Lane:
**Audience applause**

Lane Crockett:
There's a couple of ways that you can do it now to get into it, even if you just take the simple point of buying green power, that is one opportunity to push renewables and invest in renewables

Quentin Dempster:
A lot of households are on green power now

Lane Crockett:
There's a lot of households on ten percent green power

Quentin Dempster:
But not 100 percent?

Lane Crockett:
But not 100 percent. Then there's other quasi-methods, you can invest in community owned wind farms, there's one under construction in Victoria now, and one being planned, and those will start to spring up, and then if I was going to spruik, if you're in an industry super fund for example, then you would be investing in Pacific Hydro.

Quentin Dempster:
But for the paradigm shift in ten years you need base-load. Yes:

Audience member:

Fiona Wayne, Environment Business Australia. A comment, a question, and then a plea. My comment is, this seems to be, unless I've misread the mood of this room, a pretty fine Citizen's Assembly, and I think it sends a very clear message and I hope that both the major parties are taking note

Quentin Dempster:
Send a cheerio to Julia, yes...

Audience member:
My question is, and Robyn and I over the years have talked about this, can we not only envision Australia being a renewable energy super-power, but maybe becoming a regional hub for minerals processing, supply chain manufacturing

Quentin Dempster:
You want a manufacturing industry here, do you?

Audience Member:
We could, because it would be a lot cleaner. But think of cheap energy in regional hubs around the world, instead of cheap labour. That leads into my plea: can we please not refer to coal as cheap. There is nothing cheap about the collateral damage that it inflicts on the world.
** Audience applause **

Quentin Dempster:
Yes...

Audience Member:
This is about the funding. The report talks about it being funded by 100 percent government support, Malcolm talked about market signals and mechanisms. There hasn't been much explicit said from people about what the different pathways would mean and whether the private sector could do it in a way that would mean that it would be achievable in ten years. How different would the journey be if it was to be done by the private sector and how different would it be if it was purely by government.

Quentin Dempster:
Alan, London perspective?

Alan Jones:
I think experience has shown us that if you rely on government to do everything you're going to be waiting an awful long time, but there are advantages to the public sector, which is why what I did in Woking, in London and what's been done elsewhere around the world, public-private joint venture is the way to make things happen. The private sector has got the expertise, they've got the finance, the public sector has got the connection with the local community. This is how you can make these sort of projects happen.

Quentin Dempster:
Let's go to Scott. Scott Ludlam, if you're in the balance of power in the Senate after the 21st of - well I think the senate changes on the first of July next year, it all depends on whether Julia wins or Tony wins, doesn't it, as far as the shape of Australia is concerned, but you took us through, in your presentation, some of the things that you would be pushing for in this regard, can you just remind us?

Scott Ludlam:
One of the most interesting questions that I've been asked during the course of this election campaign was whether we would be pushing for a carbon price and force the government to move to the left. It's the first time I've heard a market mechanism, as a price, referred to as a left-wing initiative **Audience laughter** but here you go, there's a couple of different ways of doing it and the feed-in tariff I mentioned before is one of them, you just put a price out there and you say you can bank on a price premium for putting PV on your roof, or if you're a farmer putting up a couple of small wind turbines, you can bank and you can invest on that and that just lets people go out and do it, and it wasn't somebody in a government department who was choosing, Soviet Union style, which kind of turbine you had to buy. Somewhere there's a healthy balance where the government just puts the policy architecture in place and steps back and lets people do what they want to do. The thing that you've noticed about the initiatives around, the pink batts scheme, the energy assessors and all this, they've all crashed partly through over-subscription, of a stampede of people trying to get in and do the right thing and we need to learn something from that I think.

Quentin Dempster:
Matthew...

Matthew Wright:
I'll just point out that we don't actually take a position on the funding in the document, if you've read the document. We're agnostic on that and that's a deliberate thing, we're going to do an options paper down the track, it could be a government bond issue or something like that, feed-in tariffs have proven to be very successful, for instance in Germany. In 2007, 54 million tonnes of abatements occurred through the Renewable Energy Sources Act and their feed-in tariff, while only eight million tonnes of abatement occurred through the EU ETS, and it came in cheaper for the feed-in tariff for the German people than for the EU ETS.

Quentin Dempster:
The feed-in tariff has transformed Germany.

Matthew Wright:
The feed-in tariff has, and it's what has provided the developing world the ability to be able to afford photovoltaic technology. Because Germany installed so much photovoltaic in Germany, the cost came down massively, in the last 24 months it halved, that occurred because they rolled out so much photovoltaic and created the scale in Germany.

Quentin Dempster:
Keith Lovegrove.

Keith Lovegrove:
I'd like to speak for some policy pragmatism and say look the one thing we do have is a renewable energy target, and it's set at getting to 20 percent of stationary energy by 2020. That's not a bad thing, at least we've got that. It exists as a legislation and mechanism and it wouldn't take very much to simply legislate it to be 100 percent. One of the things that I put it to you that is currently missing though is any reward for this base-load dispatchability virtue that we've identified that we want and that solar thermal can give, the renewable energy target mechanism doesn't really reward you for dispatching at the time of greatest demand and it needs a time of day signal added to it. But this would be tweaking an existing policy.

Quentin Dempster:
That could be written into it, Lane?

Lane Crockett:
That would actually come anyway because the national electricity market, once you start to retire some of the dispatchable coal, then the market would respond, so that would come. I think you can always attract private funding if you put the right policies in place that have certainty. I think I mention, and I think it is a Greens policy for loan guarantees as well, which is a really good way of ensuring that you can get debt for technologies that are on the cusp of coming, so I think that's a really important policy. For shared infrastructure, like grid, it might be better that the government did step in in those sort of areas.

Quentin Dempster:
Thankyou. Yes:

Audience Member:
My name is Matt Mushalik, I'm running the website crudeoilpeak.com and I'm an expert in monitoring the global crude oil peak. My question goes to Matthew: you have presented some very interesting slides on steel consumption and concrete consumption for that program. Have you calculated how much diesel you need, because just for your information, according to Geoscience Australia, Australian crude oil production is going to decline by a whopping 85 percent over the next ten years. The second question goes to the panel in a wider sense: has any one of you modelled declining oil production, the impact on the economy and the financial system, and then the ability of the economy to fund all these massive projects? Has anyone calculated this and modelled this, and with a timeframe of ten years?

Quentin Dempster:
That's a good question. Yes, Matthew:

Matthew Wright:
Look, I guess we're working to something similar to what you're saying, we're saying that we know that by 2015 we're going to have 80 percent of our oil is going to be imported and at 200 dollars a barrel that's something like a 65 billion dollar oil import bill. Or at what Kerry O'Brien was talking about on the 7:30 report it would be a 35 billion dollar oil import bill. That's the sort of money we've got to spend right away if we want to avoid this and that's why we're doing the transport plan as fast as we can, to put rail on existing carriageways, on existing roads, to build metro systems, to build fast trains around Australia, we're going to do the detailed work along with the University of Melbourne's Energy Institute and release those reports. So we're acutely aware of that problem.

Quentin Dempster:
That's a game changing dynamic, isn't it.

Matthew Wright:
It is absolutely. It's an economic lever which I think will cause us to act as opposed to climate change which is kind of a bit more abstract until it whacks you, so people don't tend to react.

Quentin Dempster:
Robyn Batterham.

Robyn Batterham:
The direct answer to the question of have "people looked at what happens as oil gets in tighter supply or even runs out and hence the price goes up and so on" is yes, there has been quite a bit of work done on it and I'm sure you're well aware of it. You can look at it in two ways, and I'll be very brief about it. One, you can look at it and say "oh great, as soon as we get into the 80 to 100 dollars, not 200, but 80 to 100 dollars, you'll see gas to liquids, you'll see coal to liquids". The technology is there, the technology is proven, it's simply a cost-benefit ratio as when you switch off oil, if you still want to run off petroleum liquid products. To me, a far better path, and that's path one, and that will happen, based on costs and availability and how much balance of trade Australia wants to wear. Path two, however, is to turn around and say, ok, and you just heard a bit of it there, which is what does an all-electric Australia look like, or largely all electric. It's feasible. We are one of the few countries in the world that can turn around and say we can be a zero emission country if we want, and as Fiona Wayne was pointing out, still have massive industry in this country. All electric based. We can export aluminium, condensed electricity thank you very much, it doesn't have to have any oil or diesel in it.

Quentin Dempster:
Have we answered your question? There was the broader question. Keith...

Keith Lovegrove:
I think this whole oil issue is very very important. We've got a huge amount of inaction around the climate issue but the oil issue is just going to come upon us, and as Robyn says, as the price rises a certain amount a number of other options become economic, but what he didn't say was that things like the shale oil and the coal to liquids have maybe a three times worse carbon signature than the oil we currently use, so just by sitting back and doing nothing we could actually have a huge blowout in emissions. There is a ray of hope though that I would offer you, and that is the solar thermal technologies that we've been highlighting tonight can actually drive chemical processes, we could even imagine, well the whole electric scenario is fine, but we can actually make alternative liquid fuels using solar energy and maybe export those, so that's a hope as well, that's an upside.

Quentin Dempster:
I'm sorry, there was a general question you had at the end. What was that?

Audience Member:
Yes because we will have a massive oil import crisis already in the next years

Quentin Dempster:
We've established that, it was your other point to the panel

Audience Member:
My modelling question was that peak oil, which started in 2005, has already damaged our economy and our financial system, my worst case scenario is that every month counts, that as oil production declines it will damage our economy to such an extend that we won't have the financial means to finance all these projects so the question of other fuels doesn't arise, the problem will come very quickly

Quentin Dempster:
The capacity of the economy to make a transition

Robyn Batterham:
Very quickly, on the economics of it. This is like saying why don't we just go nuclear, it's very low emission thankyou very much, and the answer is yeah it's also rather high capital cost and your point is very well made that these alternatives, let alone their emission profiles, have capital costs associated with them which might be rather difficult to make. I think there is some good that has come out of the massive leak from a deep-sea well, by BP, in the Gulf of Mexico. Some good has come out of it. It's woken us all up to the fact that oil production is getting deeper and deeper offshore, more and more difficult, more and more expensive and somewhat riskier.

**Audience applause**

Scott Ludlam:
Just briefly, because it's great that it gets raised, and the climate debate, as paralysed and frustrating as it is in Australia, at least we're having it and the peak oil debate we're fifteen years behind where we need to be. Matt pointed out right at the outset that this is not a transition to liquid fuels scenario, they've rolled a big chunk of the transport task into electrified mass transit, whether it be light rail, freight or the bullet trains, at least up the East coast. That's actually at least included in here, so I don't think we need to contemplate the coal-to-liquids scenario and so on that are being sketched

Quentin Dempster:
Well that's the challenge of this research, it's to say what is an immediate renewable transition that we can take. Yes:

Audience Member:
My name's Lindsay, I'm from a local community group, Climate Action Newtown. I went to a meeting with our local member and the Minister for Infrastructure, Anthony Albanese, this morning. I took to him the results of doorknocking that our group has done, we've reached over 3000 households in our area and done a survey where we've asked people if they'd like to see Australia develop a plan to move to 100 percent renewable energy, to which 89 percent of people said yes. We wanted a response from Anthony Albanese to this community view and he, when we presented this, said "oh well that's very nice, but it's very easy to say, we're going to have a plan for 100 percent renewable energy"

Quentin Dempster:
But he didn't say which marginal seat is that in? The whole of Australian politics is down to the marginal seat campaigns now.

Audience Member:
Absolutely. I guess that relates to my question and it's probably a question for Malcolm Turnbull and Bob Carr had they still been here but I'll turn it to whoever wants to answer. Clearly it's not technical, the impediments to 100 percent renewable energy in Australia are not technical, the impediments are political and lack of political will. What can I do, what can my community group, what can everyone in this room do to create the kind of political will that we need to make this happen.

**Audience applause**

Quentin Dempster:
I think we'll take that as a plea. Yes:

Audience Member:
I had a question to Matthew, relating to one of the graphs in the report.

Quentin Dempster:
Hang on. What can you do, somebody, Scott, go on...

Scott Ludlam:
I reckon that does deserve an answer, that's the question of the night. The question I'd throw back to you I guess is how strong is our democracy, when you can get poll after poll since the 1990s that said sign Kyoto for goodness sake and lets get on with it. We've had popular opinion here for nearly 20 years. We signed the framework convention on climate change in 1992, there's people whose whole lives have been lived in Australia against that backdrop...

Quentin Dempster:
But Scott, Barack Obama can't get an ETS through the Congress of the United States that was elected by the American people to do that

Scott Ludlam:
Yeah, well, we need to persue democracy in some different forms because we're seeing that same paralysis right here in Australia. I think that the work that you're doing is exactly the answer that you're seeking. You're doorknocking your local neighbourhood, you're confronting your local MP, and when the answer isn't the one that you want then you challenge him, then you come to a public meeting, then you organise a rally. We've got nine days to really shake this country up and then it'll have to carry on after that.

Quentin Dempster:
Ok, thanks, next.

Audience Member:
My question was for Matthew, relating to your curve from the US DOE, showing solar thermal costs declining from '04 through to 2020 and that projection, that forecast said that they would halve, go down by a factor of two between '04 and 2010. Now the actual on-the-ground results of those Spanish solar thermal plants, have they met that target, what has actually happened to the costs?

Matthew Wright:
Basically, the cumulative install, that's based on the cumulative megawatts that's installed, that's capacity in the ground. So we took the data based on the cumulative install and did our modelling based on that. Obviously between 2004 and 2010 the Bush administration tried to close down the US Department of Energy's solar programs in 2003, there was a lot of paralysis, then Spain picked up from 2007 and started installing these plants, the big rollout has started since 2008. In the parabolic trough space, the price started at the premium high starting point and the feed-in-tariff after 2013 will be dropped by 30 percent, so they're sort of tracking there. Now with towers, we haven't seen the rollout, as yet, the way it's rolled out with troughs, there's actually two parts to that, there's another chart that shows the parabolic trough reduction curve, so that's riding, we need to see the first few plants just to confirm that the US DOE has got it right on the towers but it seems they got the troughs right so you'd argue, with their very detailed study, 400 pages you can download off the 'net, it's referenced in the report, they've gone component by component, I'd say they've probably got it right.

Quentin Dempster:
Ok. Yes:

Audience Member:
I'm Roslyn and I'm a very very worried grandmother. I have a preamble which is that I went to a screening of a film recently and it's not talking about what can happen in the future with all these wonderful ideas, but what is actually happening right now in Australia. Some of this is actually up and running and will need the investment that we've been talking about. I also go with what Alan Jones, whom I admire enormously, said about vested interests are going to prevent this. Now this brings me to my question of all, both of these panels, we need hope. For me this gave hope, and all the people in that room, this film about the future. And it is the future, and we need hope to be able to get behind what is happening, every single one of us here, and many millions of others out there will get behind whatever is happening, but we know there is a monstrous edifice in front of us. We can't get over it, we can't get around it, we can't get under it, it's called the government.

**Audience applause**

Quentin Dempster:
Well that's a people power...

Audience Member:
Malcolm Turnbull can talk about the wonderful things that he's doing and I think that he has some very good ideas and things to say, but his 12 year government, what did it do? Denied climate change. Now we've just had three years of Labor, the same thing. My question to both the panels is: what can we do, and what can you do, especially these eminent people here, who have studied all this, come up with a result, and are being sneered at, smeared, and ignored, what does it take for governments, for politicians, to actually listen and act, will it take a Gulf of Mexico equivalent in Australia?

Quentin Dempster:
Yes Lane:

Lane Crockett:
That's a mighty tough question. When you look at, I do travel up to Canberra from time to time and pace some of the corridors and the unfortunate reality for a representative of a renewable energy company is for every one of me there's ten to fifty fossil fuel people pacing the corridors. We recognise it's tough, I guess it's about carrying on with what you're doing because the people need to demonstrate your want for something to happen. Industry does need to step up, I've got to really say that in some ways a lot of industry missed a trick during the CPRS debate, I know there are some companies who think oh, we just assumed that was going to happen, we didn' t say much. It's incumbent upon them to speak up more, those that will benefit and take opportunity from it. To some extent, we just keep on going with it...

Quentin Dempster:
Chief Scientist, what can we do?

Robyn Batterham:
This is really tough, as has been said. The government of course is the government of the people, it is not an independent body set up by a bunch of shareholders, it's set up by everyone in this room, and that's worth remembering, because at the end of the day they will count votes. Influencing local opinion, influencing city wide, like Sydney is doing, opinion and whether it's state or federal, talking to members etc. So there's one whole path that says the community has got to want this and get active. That's where this report is so fantastic, because it shows you in words that even I can understand but I think we can all understand hey, here's a do-able path, so we can get it into the language. That's step one. Step two is there's got to be a few visionaries around the place, you can call them raving ratbags or whatever you like, who can put some stuffs on the table, stand behind the credibility of it in terms of economics, in terms of technology. I can give you three things, I'm actually looking for four, and then the Academy will be going to government with a fairly large amount of noise.

I want four things that we can lay down on the table and say you want to transform Australia, and really put it on the map? Here's four things you can do. I've got three at the moment and they're not necessarily the three that I'll end up with. One: make deep geothermal work. Because currently it's far too slow to be in the race. Two: The person who sells 60 percent of the world's photovoltaics did his PHD at the University of New South Wales. What's the next generation going to be? I don't know the answer to that but I'm sure as heck I'd ask Dr Shi, the person I referred to, and others. Three: I'm not sure whether Better Place is the best looking electric vehicle system and battery changeover and what have you, I don't want to get lost in that particular debate, but what I can say is we've got a car manufacturing industry and we're hanging on by the edge of our fingernails with them and their suppliers etc. How about a target, not just of a couple of hundred million going into a so-called green car initiative, but lets see a couple of billion and place Australia in the position where it is a mile ahead of the Japanese, the Chinese and the North Americans in electric vehicle manufacture.

Quentin Dempster:
Thank you.
**Audience applause**