|Power transmission line downed due to the storms of September 2016
|The photo was taken near Blyth, Mid-North South Australia on
South Australia's power failures had nothing to do with renewable
How many times have climate scientists warned us that violent weather events
and severe heatwaves will become more common with the warming of the
South Australia suffered two such events – exceptional winds and rains
– in September 2016; the first on
14-15th and the second on 28-29th.
The second of these events, coming on top of already saturated soils, caused
flooding and the loss of grid-electricity over the whole of the state.
There are four major power transmission lines connecting Adelaide to the
north of the state; 22 or 23 power pylons on three of these were blown down.
We were told that the state's power system could have handled the loss of
two of the transmission lines, but three were too many; the system had to
shut down to avoid further damage.
(The saturated soil combined with high winds caused some of the pylon's legs
to pull out of the ground; others were simply bent over by the force of the
There were more storms and power outages in South Australia in December 2016,
this time no transmission lines were downed, but far more trees and power
(Transmission lines are high voltage lines that take power long distances,
distribution lines take the power from local 'sub-stations' to customers.)
In many cases the falling trees took power lines down with them.
In my area, the Clare Valley, alone, there were thousands or tens of thousands
of trees downed, my than I can recall ever seeing previosly.
In a February 2017 heatwave 90,000 homes had their power cut for short
periods when there was insufficient power available in South Australia.
The problem was that the Australian Energy Market Operator had not given
Pelican Point power station sufficient time to power up on a day of low
power generation and high consumption.
The AEF and others blamed all these power outages on South Australia's
Blaming damage caused by burning coal on the renewable energy industry is
classic Orwellian 'reasoning' by groups devoted to the
dying coal industry.