‘Joe Hockey says wind turbines 'utterly offensive', flags budget cuts to clean energy schemes.’
Joe Hockey is our Federal Treasurer and this is his take on wind farm renewable energy.
Personally, I love wind farms. I love the look of them and the job they do.
When flying from Amsterdam to Norwich, UK, a few years ago, I was thrilled by the spectacle of a shoreline dotted with these magnificent ‘beasts’ called wind turbines. I have been almost as thrilled to see them popping up in a few places in Australia, notably the ones on Lake George near Canberra, which are precisely the ones Joe Hockey (wince!) criticises today. The last time I drove near them I counted over 60 ‘windmills’ and thought it a good start.
I am reminded of the old ‘Windmill’ poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807 – 1882),
which begins, ‘Behold! a giant am I!
Aloft here in my tower….’
Certainly, the poem goes on to describe how this windmill is used for grinding wheat into flour – ‘With my granite jaws I devour
The maize, and the wheat, and the rye,
And grind them into flour…….’
But it is the magnificence of the windmill - or wind turbine – that stirs the soul; its majestic presence, I suppose.
There’s a lot more to the poem and it’s certainly worth a read, even though the reference is to a windmill and not a wind turbine.
This verse fits either:
‘I stand here in my place
With my foot on the rock below,
And whichever way it may blow
I meet it face to face,
As a brave man meets his foe’.
Poor Joe Hockey – the sensitivity of a slice of stale white bread and his appreciation for the worth, beauty and future of his country shrunk down to dependence on the price of coal and the value of what spews out of iron-ore mines.
We await with dread his comments on solar power.
Things are not looking good for the Australian renewable energy program.
Below is a snippet from a South Australian study investigating the possibility of solar farms.
(Start yawning now!)
‘The viability of large-scale photovoltaic solar farms in the District Council of Mount Remarkable was investigated by estimating the levelised cost of energy produced and comparing the cost to the current price of energy from projects of similar scale.’
All I can do is groan.