Right now, there is an opportunity to slash Australia’s carbon emissions by 5 million tonnes a year in one stroke. The city of Port Augusta in South Australia has all the right conditions to make it Australia’s first baseload renewable energy hub. The two coal-fired power stations at Port Augusta are getting old. Industry experts say they may be forced to close as soon as 2015.
State planning minister Brad Hazzard released draft guidelines to regulate NSW wind farms in December. The guidelines allow anyone with a residence within two kilometres to veto a wind power project. If the guidelines become law, this would put the brakes on the wind industry, as the coal seam gas industry bolts ahead.