In this podcast, Beyond Zero radio talks to Simon Holmes à Court, senior advisor to the Energy Transition Hub at Melbourne University and sits on the advisory board of the Melbourne Energy Institute. He was founding chair of Hepburn Wind, Australia’s first community owned wind farm. He talks about our renewable energy outlook.
“”A little optimism will not go astray”
Although emissions rose in 2017, Simon Holmes a Court, Senior advisor to the Energy Transition Hub at Melbourne Uni. prefers to look at the positives. He believes we give undue attention to politics and bases his optimism on the fact that prices are now so competitive for renewables (solar even more than wind) and will be even more so when renewables exceed coal as generation of choice in 2025, according to the IEA (International Energy Agency). This of course leads to less risk in investing, more encouragement for those considering installation of solar PV particularly as it is not necessary for an installer to visit a residence to give a quote as it is in US.
Reliability – one of the continual criticisms by the government of renewables is now at 95% compared with coal and gas, following the dire warnings from the media and government of blackouts in the recent extreme weather when in fact, it was the ancient coal and gas stations which failed in NSW, VIC and QLD at peak times. One of the other criticisms is also the situation with India and China because of their dense population but as Simon said China has now a record of installing 7 PV panels per second!
But complacency is not justified as Australia is still well behind its target for 2030 and is not expected to reach it and there is still no national emissions target and no price on carbon. To excuse Australia as being a small player in the world is a “morally bankrupt” argument according to Simon. The country still has only 16% of renewables. The ABC’s Science Show (episode on 10/3) said that 1.5 degrees is impossible unless there is no more generation of CO2 from now and we have not got available technology at present to remove it from the atmosphere.
Commentary by: Bev McIntyre” [Photo supplied]
BZE Technology Radio Show: 9 March 2018: Podcast
Beyond Zero Emissions talks to Simon Holmes à Court
BZE Interviewers: Laura Perri, Natalie Bucknell, Kay Wennagel, Michael Staindl
Interview broadcast on: 9 March 2018
From Radio 3CR in Melbourne, Australia