Hi Russell, On Fri, Nov 15, 2013 at 12:58 AM, Russell Standish <li...@hpcoders.com.au> wrote: > On Thu, Nov 14, 2013 at 12:09:18PM +0100, Telmo Menezes wrote: >> On Wed, Nov 13, 2013 at 11:32 PM, Russell Standish >> <li...@hpcoders.com.au> wrote: >> >> > The good news is that the figures I've seen is that its not such a >> > tremendous cost after all. >> >> I am very interested in this. Could you be more specific? How can this >> be? Was there some breakthrough in sustainable sources that increased >> their efficiency? > > The following is an article dealing with the economics in Australia of > PV vs coal fired stations > > http://reneweconomy.com.au/2013/renewables-now-cheaper-than-coal-and-gas-in-australia-62268 > > And here is one for wind power: > > http://www.smh.com.au/business/carbon-economy/rising-risk-prices-out-new-coalfired-plants-report-20130207-2e0s4.html > > These figure also do not include the existing carbon price of $20 per tonne. > > Existing fossil fuel generators will continue for a while, though, of > course, particularly as renewables have not yet solved the baseload > supply problem. Vanadium batteries may be good for that.
Thanks for this. I hope it works. Reading the articles I have a feeling that this is more related to banks fearing investments in non-clean energy that could be subject to increasingly high taxes -- even though it appears that the Australian conservatives are not inclined to do that. I have no doubt that the technology is improving and I hope it does, but I would be more convinced if they addressed the hard numbers on the energy efficiency, sans current economical incentives, be they regulation or market conditions. Because I believe that those are the ones that will count in the long term. Part of the reason for my worry is that I saw heavy subsidising of wind farms destroy the industry in my home country (Portugal). The energy bill there is now about 60% taxes, to maintain the wind farms. Keeping your house warm in the winter is too expensive, even for the upper middle class. >> >> > Obviously fossil fuel will run out anyway, so even without climate >> >> > change >> >> > we'd have to do something. >> >> >> >> Yes, but that something we have to do is very different depending on >> >> whether or not we have to cut CO2 emissions and, more importantly, one >> >> of the path leads to immense human suffering. >> >> >> > >> > The point is whether we do something, or do nothing, energy costs >> > _will_ rise. Yes this _will_ lead to human suffering, either way. We >> > can either choose to pay a bit more now, and have less costs later, or >> > pay less now, and have steeper rises later. >> >> I agree that energy costs will rise and this is a very serious problem >> that we need to face. If you don't have to worry about CO2 so much, >> it's easier and less painful -- the more expensive fossil fuels >> become, the more economic incentive there will be for renewable >> sources. In this scenario we can retain economic freedom, which is >> highly correlated with prosperity. >> >> > A 10 or 20% energy cost increase to hasten decarbonisation by a decade >> > will save many billions of dollars of geo-engineering, or evironmental >> > restoration down the track. >> >> Are you aware of geo-engineering proposals that would be very cheap? >> > > Nothing earth-scale will be cheap, or easy to understand all the > consequences. Ultimately, it will need to come down to a cost-benefit > analysis, factoring in the unknowns as some kind of risk factor. But if the technology break-throughs are real, we don't even have to worry all that much, maybe. There will be a lot of money to be made in moving to sustainable sources. Pushes for regulation make me suspect that the technology is not there yet. In which case I agree with you. >> > Seems like quite an astute investment to >> > me. Our current conservative government, alas, doesn't seem to think >> > so. >> > >> >> Then there are the geo-engineering ideas that John mentioned. They >> >> appear to be ignored. This makes the entire thing start to smell a bit >> >> of religious moralism. >> >> >> >> Telmo. >> >> >> > >> > They're not being ignored. But they do require a lot more small-scale >> > research to understand their risk-benefit tradeoff. >> >> I never see this as part of the discussion. I'm very skeptical that >> this is being seriously pursued. >> > > http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2012/oct/15/pacific-iron-fertilisation-geoengineering > > amongst many other similar experiments. > > I can see why certain environmental movements have put geoengineering > off the table for political reasons, but this doesn't mean it > shouldn't be researched theoretically, and experimented practically on > a small scale so that we better understand the costs, efficacy and > risks if (or more likely when) it becomes a necessary part of the > total solution. Ok, we agree. > As for carbon pricing, which is the current hot topic in Australia. As > a philosophical point, I am in favour of some sort of carbon pricing, > but I'm not enough of an economist and energy technologist to know the > ideal timing for its introduction, nor the amount of the pricing. The > current fixed price scheme we have amounts to an increase of 10-20% on > fuel costs, which I would have thought to be "too little, too late". I > don't know how the price of $20 per tonne was arrived at. I do know > that the Eurpoean market price is even lower, at around $8 per tonne, > so I can't see economics providing much of a push. > > The problem is that when our current newly elected government was in > opposition, they went around denying that there is even a problem. I > wouldn't have minded if they kept the political discussion to whether > a carbon price was appropriate right now, or questioned the economic > modelling used to set the price, or whether it should be set by a > market mechanism. Instead they denied the scientific consensus, > labelled the carbon price as a "tax", and stood on a platform of > "scrap the tax", which will be one of the first bills they will > introduce in parliament in the next week. It makes me mad - > effectively they have shut down much needed debate on how best we should > address climate change, and resorted to slogaineering and ideology. > > I just hope that the opposition and independent parties act to block > this behaviour, and hopefully return discussion back to issues of > policy, not science, which is the proper scope for a parliament. But > we shall see... At least what Australia does is unlikely to bugger up > the whole world, we're too small for that. > > -- > > ---------------------------------------------------------------------------- > Prof Russell Standish Phone 0425 253119 (mobile) > Principal, High Performance Coders > Visiting Professor of Mathematics hpco...@hpcoders.com.au > University of New South Wales http://www.hpcoders.com.au > ---------------------------------------------------------------------------- > > -- > You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups > "Everything List" group. > To unsubscribe from this group and stop receiving emails from it, send an > email to everything-list+unsubscr...@googlegroups.com. > To post to this group, send email to firstname.lastname@example.org. > Visit this group at http://groups.google.com/group/everything-list. > For more options, visit https://groups.google.com/groups/opt_out. -- You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups "Everything List" group. 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