Reading Alan Finkel's quarterly essay.

Can you believe it costs $31.95 for hardcopy? Too much!

It's often difficult to read in the sense it does not seem to be his true and considered opinion.

It comes across as a mosaic of ideas. There are discontinuities throughout.
The only consistency is that he is doing a job for the government.

He often mentions deficiencies in grid infrastructure for handling renewables, without mentioning the govt is doing very little to redress that, whilst susbsidising fossil fuels to the tune of $10B pa
He doesn't seem to take account of urgency, e.g. talking up uranium fission; or of 21st Century doughnut economics (doesn't give much weight to externalities like environment, public health etc.)

He flip flops between notions of decarbonisation and the inevitability of
a long fossil fuel tail.

He talks of $200 Mwh CCS for coal at the power plant, then talks off CCS at the well.

Absurdly, he equates zero emissions and low or very low emissions, and then defines low emissions as < 10%.
The problem being, he does not weigh that with the availability of offsets, the spirit of Paris (offsets only for genuinely intractable emissions), nor the scalability for future economic growth that he and the govt bang on about ad infinitum.
Nor scalability for clean energy demand in all the other sectors.

And of course, he makes no mention of the govt standing on the neck of other sectors, like with their demonisation of EV's

He talks of LNP ministers like they are rock stars. Disturbingly sycophantic.
He talks of low emissions gas replacement for coal; his discussion of relative methane emissions comes across as simplistic and cherry picked. He doesn't explore the full implications of methane. He talks of conversion of methane burners to H2 burners - but as a mix!
The central thrust of the document is the proposal to turn hydrogen into a major export industry. The massive electrical energy requirement for production, well, given the govt is standing on the neck of renewables - you guessed it - step on the gas!
Here, Finkel is at his worst, talking of the "emotive" colour coded scheme of H2 production; and claiming gas CCS can ELIMINATE emissions at a cost of 1/3 of energy. Simply untrue (refer to his definition of zero emissions).
Worryingly, he talks of Australia's involvement in the process of international certification of clean hydrogen.

He offers no discussion or explanation for Australia's laggard approach on eliminating hydrofluorocarbon refrigerants.
He references the ERF (Emissions Reduction Fund) as a proxy carbon price; he doesn't canvass the Gillard carbon scheme, it's success, and the damage the govt caused in its repeal.

Nor the ongoing damage of the govt's menacing jawboning and big stick threats.
He wraps up with a vision of a coal free future, a small permanent role for gas; critically, without any timeframe. That's as important as an emissions target - it's area under the curve vs. endpoint - as implicit under Paris.

But no wonder, given his impetus to build masses of new fossil fuel infrastructure in this country, the likes of which we've never seen.

And when would those bully boys let go?

Well after Bondi Beach and Campbell Parade are several stories under water, I would think.
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