Bass Link Madness

It’s a pity our State Government has to squeeze every dollar they can out of gambling to help pay the bills while at the same time making decisions which will allow the National Electricity grid to extract tens of millions of future profits out of Tasmania. The Bacon government should remember that they won an election in this state based on the fact that they wouldn’t sell the HEC. Have they signed a back room deal which could be even worse than selling it? Tasmania’s electricity is currently generated from our dam storage levels which are decreasing, while our agriculture water needs are increasing. Will this Bass Link deal compensate our farmers if the grid uses up our summer water supply? The proposed owners of the Link want a guaranteed return of around 15% on their 500 to 600 million which the State Government will have to guarantee and we will end up paying for it through increased power bills. We managed to find 200 million from somewhere to build our Smithton wind farm however it will take time to come on line so why rush into this current deal . If the Bass Link is such a great idea we should be looking at ways to fund it ourselves through both HEC revenue and the millions being payed into superannuation accounts, which in most cases don’t pay any where near 15%. By funding the link we would control the price and availability of mainland energy shortfalls, which would yield us far greater profits than the deal currently on offer. The National Competition Policy is being forced on us by the Federal Government because we can offer the national grid instant carbon credit power to boost mainland generators which can then be operated at a lower levels. These coal fired carbon producing plants can not be quickly boosted like our generators, at the push of a button. Where will the competition policy be when the National Grid controls all electricity distribution in Australia. Big mainland companies will pay more for using our carbon credit energy because it enables them to continue their pollution levels. Coal fired generators can’t be shut down at night when consumption is low. They are offering this unsaleable power to us in exchange for our high value power on demand leaving the deal tipped in their favour. The proposed Link is based on an antiquated single wire with anodes either side of it to fizz the current back through the water with its obvious environmental concerns to marine life. If we were to put the link in ourselves, stage one could take into consideration, a part overland route through Flinders Island, saving the island, current diesel generating costs and picking up and expanding on the islands existing wind generation and new tidal power systems .By taking this route we could install proper underwater cabling over a much shorter distance not to mention the future development opportunities for Flinders Island. It is such a pity that the real future of Tasmania’s most important business, our energy source, is in the hands of a few short sighted executives who are being hoodwinked by mainland based international corporations and the Federal Government.