Guest essay by Eric Worrall
h/t Breitbart – Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott, whose recently appointed a commissioner to handle complaints about wind farms, has just instructed the government Clean Energy Corporation not to subsidise any new wind farm projects.
According to the Sydney Morning Herald;
Tony Abbott has dramatically escalated his war on wind power, creating a new cabinet split and provoking a warning he is putting international investment at risk.
Fairfax Media can reveal the government has ordered the $10 billion Clean Energy Finance Corporation not to make any new investments in wind power projects.
Treasurer Joe Hockey and Finance Minister Mathias Cormann have issued the so-called green bank with a directive to change its investment mandate, prohibiting new wind funding. It’s understood the directive was issued without the approval or knowledge of Environment Minister Greg Hunt, angering the minister.
The decision is another blow for the multibillion-dollar wind industry, which has just started to recover from the uncertainty created by the government’s Renewable Energy Target review. Analysts say $8.7 billion is expected to be invested in wind power in the next five years, while the corporation has invested about $300 million in wind projects to date.
The Australian Abbott government has twice been unable to muster the numbers in the senate, to pass legislation to abolish the commission. But they’ve done the next best thing – they’ve demanded the commission focus on developing new technology.
… The government has previously said it wants the corporation to focus on investing in innovative clean energy proposals and technologies rather than mature technologies that can be financed by mainstream lenders.
Senator Cormann and Mr Hockey amended the mandate for the first time earlier this year, directing the corporation to lift its targeted returns without lifting its risk profile.
The government has twice tried to abolish the corporation but has been blocked by the Senate. The bill to abolish the corporation is a potential double dissolution election trigger. …
Australian Treasurer Joe Hockey shares Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s concerns about wind turbines – in 2014 he described wind turbines as “utterly offensive”.
The wind industry has regularly claimed for years that their technology is close to cost parity with coal. So I expect the withdrawal of government subsidies for wind turbines will have no impact on future wind projects.