"It doesn't matter how beautiful your theory is, it doesn't matter how smart you are. If it doesn't agree with experiment, it's wrong." Richard P. Feynman

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Another Half Billion Down the Gillard Gurgler!

Areva and BP win $819m in Australia Solar Flagships funding

 The picture says it all with the Premier of Queensland and the Prime Minister of Australia proudly announcing that the taxpayers of Australia are wasting   a half-billion dollars in experimental solar power stations which have no practical economic value. However they did not announce the site or cost of the back-up generator required. They did not announce the rate consumers will pay for the "free" green energy produced. They definitely did not announce the result of the exhaustive cost benefit analysis which is mandatory for any large project . The solar power stations will not produce one Kilowatt of dispatchable energy and would never be built without huge government assistance because they make no economic sense. Following on from the billions wasted on the Pink Batts disaster , Cash-for-Clunkers fiasco and others,this is another massive Julia Gillard boondoggle with the public purse.
REGIONAL Queensland will be home to one of the biggest solar-gas power plants in the world under a $1.2 billion investment that will create hundreds of jobs.
The Solar Dawn project will use new Australian-pioneered technology and transform Chinchilla and the western downs into the nation's mixed-energy capital.
Building a case to support renewable energy and her carbon pollution tax, Prime Minister Julia Gillard said the abundant Queensland sun could help power the region and keep the environment clean.
"We will protect Australian jobs at the same time as we create new ones," she said.
For Ms Gillard it proves her carbon tax will create green jobs and drive innovation.
The construction of the station - about 300km west of Brisbane - is a joint project between the Federal and State governments and an energy consortium led by AREVA Solar. Ms Gillard announced $464 million for the project while Premier Anna Bligh chipped in $75 million.
Construction will start in 2013 - a year after the carbon tax starts - and is to be completed two years later.
It will create up to 300 new jobs, indirectly support up to 1000 jobs and will abate about 500,000 tonnes of emissions a year.
The energy from the 250 megawatt solar thermal gas hybrid power plant will be bought by an energy retailer and feed back into the electricity grid. Eighty-five per cent of the power generated will be emissions free
Note: A real  power station (coal-fired )  of the same size would be about one third of the cost and would run 24/7 , on rainy or cloudy days and at night and would not require a second back-up station. It would supply peak power on the electricity grid  (from 6pm to 8 pm) when a grid operator needs all his plant on line. None of  the  70,000 solar consumers claimed will be powered by solar at that time.


  1. Europe tried this type of tripe and just where did it get them? Bankrupt!
    I'm totally lost as to why Labor led by Gillard want to 'experiment' with ideas that are less efficient than what we have been using for decades. Why not wait until these new technologies can indeed takeover completely from coal (if we think coal and carbon are the bad lads in the world of heating!).

  2. Studies and experimentation about solar energy might have no economical value by now. But in the near future, I believe there would be.