The Marshall Government seems to have done or decided very little in this period. I looked up ourenergyplan.sa.gov.au to see what they had decided, I found Jay Whetherill's photo on the pdf file. It seemed that the Marshall Government had changed nothing on that site.
Proposed interconnected with NSWBefore the March 2018 election that made him Premier Steven Marshall had proposed building a new electricity interconnector between SA and NSW with the stated aim of giving SA access to reliable coal-fired base-load power.
There are several factors in this that Mr Marshall may not have recognised:
This is a taste of things to come as more wind farms and solar power stations come on-line.
No doubt Premier Marshall will claim credit for decreasing power prices and increasing power exports to the eastern states in the future, while the process was in place before he came to power.
But the fact that the Weatherill Government encouraged fracking in South Eastern South Australia and supported the investigation of the possibility of in-situ coal gasification (ISCG) in the Leigh Creek area suggest that the Weatherill Government at least may have been opportunistic rather than ethical.
It is noteworthy that the Liberal-National coalition Marshal Government passed a bill legislating a moratorium on fracking in the South East of South Australia in October 2018. Louise Horobin wrote an article in the Border Chronicle, 2018/10/26. She wrote "Limestone Coast Protection Alliance chairperson Angus Ralton congratulated the community and local politicians for continuing to fight for legislation reform." Mr Ralton was quoted as saying:
“This is a well deserved outcome for the community that has fought so hard. Thanks must go to our local independent MP, Troy Bell for moving this Bill and to Nick McBride for getting the Libs on board. We'd also like to thank Mark Parnell and fellow Greens in the Upper House as well as SA Best whose support was crucial in getting this Bill through.”
While there can be no doubt at all that the federal Liberal-National coalition governments of Prime Ministers Abbott, Turnbull and Morrison were anti-environment and pro-coal, while the federal Labor Opposition was more environmentally responsible, it would seem that the situation in South Australia is more open to question.
It remains to be seen whether the Marshall Government will allow the shockingly polluting proposed in-situ gasification of coal proposed for Leigh Creek to go ahead.
This has to be a "seeing the light" moment comparable to Saul/St Paul on the road to DamascusThe South Australian Liberals under Steven Marshall and other leaders has undergone a remarkable change, one might say an enlightenment, in the eight years from 2013 to 2021.
In 2013 I wrote a page about David Ridgway's dishonest, pig-headed and foolish opposition to wind power. At that time Mr Ridgway was the leader of the Liberal opposition in the SA Legislative Council.
By late 2020 the Marshall government was talking up the huge potential future that South Australia has in the further development of renewable energy. Indeed, the Marshall government announced a target of 500% renewable energy by 2050.
At the time of writing there were two other Australian states that had Liberal/Coalition governments: NSW under Premier Gladys Berejiklian and Tasmania under Peter Gutwein. Again, at the time of writing, both had seen that the future was with sustainability, both were strongly supportive of renewable energy. How long must we wait for our federal Morrison government to 'see the light'?
(I have written a page on SA's energy future elsewhere on this site.)
"The South Australia state government says it wants to lead Australia in the uptake of electric vehicles, and is aiming to ensure that all new car sales in the state are fully electric by 2035..."The turn-around in the people who make up this government over the past ten or so years continues to amaze.
They had a number of concerns with the proposed changes. Quoting the email I received:
"The proposed new Bill stacks the 6-member Pastoral Board with five pastoralists, removes scientific positions (ecologist, soil scientist) and the Conservation Council representative) as required under the current 1989 Act. An 'industry-captured' board will automatically renew 100-year leases, creating effective freehold. Stocking limits are to be abandoned. Tourism access to the pastoral lands will be more difficult. Effective on-ground environmental assessments will no longer need to be ’thorough’ as required under the 1989 Act, and will be replaced with unproven remote-sensing techniques. Biodiversity conservation will no longer be an objective, and the new Board will likely oppose the establishment of new biodiversity reserves on pastoral leases."The changes seem to me to have potentially very bad environmental consequences and need to be opposed. I signed the petition opposing the changes.
I've written to two local politicians about my concerns.
On this site...SA's great success with the development of renewable energy.
On the Internet...Lazard's Levelized Cost of Energy 2017
Wikipedia: Cost of electricity by source; wind power
The ConversationSolar PV and wind are on track to replace all coal, oil and gas within two decades; 2018/04/06 (before the Marshall Government had any impact in SA.)
On this page...All new vehicle sold in SA to be electric by 2035
First 50 days in government
421 days in government
Conversion from anti-renewables to pro-renewables
Proposed changes to the Pastoral Land Management and Conservation Act
Environmentally responsible governments?
Some of Premier Marshall's myths busted