Not many people seem to have noticed the bank of …

Comment on We’ve got the sunshine, they’ve got the people by Trevor Shiell.

Not many people seem to have noticed the bank of invertors outside the big green shed on the main North road, or the solar array South of Coober Pedy, or the community grid going in at Goulburn, NSW, ($500 membership ) or the facility in Morocco based on solar and molten salt, and supplying power 24/7 to two million people, or the same facility in Spain doing much the same thing, or the shopping centers at Griffith or Murray Bridge, which have gone off grid.
All done by an Australian company.
Of the 50 or so mini grids in Australia, many are facilitated by a major development company – Lend Lease. One in WA supplies 20 houses from a battery bank inside a shipping container, while the money for the Morocco unit came from Wall St, where they know a thing or two about money.
We could have been exporting electricity to the Eastern states but for the breathlessly short sighted vision. It’s no coincidence that the facility in SA (Elon Musk) is situated right next to the interstate connector.
And what of the electric cars that will be heading our way? Holland or Denmark runs its entire rail system on wind. Where have we been?

Recent Comments by Trevor Shiell

Preaching ‘treading carefully’ then sending in the bulldozers
The whole issue of Kilgariff will go down as a masterpiece in political pork barrelling, with the current debacle being a masterpiece in disgraceful planning both by the Henderson and then Giles administrations.
As pointed out many times both the commercial and environmental costs will be enormous.
The environment costs are now emerging. The economic costs in the form of lost opportunities to promote new economic activity and advancement in food production technologies in full public view have now gone.
In the meantime countries like India (quote from our National newspaper of Monday last) “Australia’s rural and food exports to India could soar 10 fold to more than $30 billion in a decade, according to India’s High Commissioner”.
Perhaps we could be selling them our Kilgariff type houses to eat, or maybe canal facing real estate to go into aquaculture.
The high commissioner was talking on greater agribusiness opportunities and growing demand from India’s 1.3 billion people looking for better quality food from overseas, and India’s predicted doubling of food production by 2050 will not satisfy their requirements.
Within 10 years India will have more people than China.
The warning to get researching in this area was issued years ago by the Vice President for food production in China, but again ignored by the then Giles Government, in favour of self interest votes here, and once again we will be caught flat footed.
This is he true cost of the disgrace that we call Kilgariff.
And the thinking does not stop there. In the last months at least two emerging Australian agritech companies have moved to Israel because no one thought to encourage them here to do their arid lands research.
Israel has an export market of over $10 billion in irrigation technology and we are entitled to ask ourselves what were we doing when all this was happening and where is our share?
Building houses which are expensive and on a recognised flood plain, perhaps?


Gas-first government dodging urgent need to act on climate
In other parts of the country government involvement seems to have slowed down the inevitable move to renewable energy.
The huge development at Tailem Bend in SA, for example, has Singaporean money behind it and there are similar stories elsewhere.
A major real estate development North of Perth (Alkinos) was put in place and is largely independent of Government involvement in electricity, by a private developer.
That could have happened at Kilgarrif with just a little government foresight.
A public company is initialling significant solar resources on southern shopping centres and schools, and our own green shed has enough capacity on its trade outlet alone to power 35 houses, and no-one notices the row of inverters along the front supplying over 80% of it power needs.
The Alice could own and be very proud of owning its own power if we all got behind Re-power, as several other municipalities interstate have done.
Often governments slow progress down.
Who seems to care about the flood of electric vehicles heading this way and how we are going to benefit from them or even cope with them?


Business group may establish ‘federal’ prison in The Centre
Put it at Anzac next to the cultural centre and fill it with bankers and insurance executives, on the recommendation of the current Royal commission.
Great business for the northern end of the mall, where the major business group seems to want to operate.


Stagnant CBD; industrial land, rental shortage; houses hold
Again the CBD is where it is not because of current commercial imperatives but for historical reasons associated with the Telegraph line and Arltunga. It needs to move South.
There is land at Brewer and an inquiry into the status of allegedly Crown land south of the airport returned a variety of excuses and again I wonder how it is that land advertised as Crown land is not available for the Crown to use.
Arumbera as an industrial park is not an option as it ignores the geographic realities of The Gap. The last traffic flow census there was done in 2009 (now hopelessly out of date) and in the meantime local government in several metropolitan areas are spending big dollars on short term recreational walking tours close to other facilities.
Then we have the unique situation at Brewer where three major cross national Highways will intersect, with the shortest distance Brisbane / Perth being via the Outback Way and throw in an international airport, and rail hub, hospital with ample parking, and a visitors centre where busses can park and that’s where the future of the town lies.
But we continue to procrastinate, just as we have with Kilgariff, where several high tech food production companies in arid areas have moved offshore because they were never encouraged to look here, taking their employment, investment, and research dollars with them.
Instead we have canal frontage housing allotments without the boats (yet).
And how about a defensive driving facility at the motor sports complex. Statistics show this to be a very necessary thing but completely overlooked as a means of catering for the growing number of senior students visiting here, and their cash.
We need to stop looking backwards, and look for new opportunities.


ANZAC Oval art gallery good for Mall traders: Chamber
How much longer will the delusion last and how many more times will the mall be “invigorated” before they realise that the CBD is now in the wrong place and out of date.
It was great when the centre of commercial activity were the Telegraph Station and Arltunga. But times change.
The Mega flora museum should be a the AZRI geology centre in conjunction with the rest of our amazing geology, the cultural centre should be in conjunction with Yirrara with the achievement of the students portrayed, the visitors centre as at Katherine should be at the highway intersection with the display of the bush tucker potential, and with the Hall of Fame constitute a new tourism hub to proactively intercept visitors and direct them to where the commerce people want them to be.
The short sighted planning in that area and the introduction of new industries here has been very sad.
We have a fixation with speed and fast motor sport, but how about a training school in defensive driving for the hundreds of senior school students that visit, or a training school to prevent the sad loss of live on quad bikes in conjunction with the drag strip.
At least two medicinal cannabis and Ag technology companies are now operating out of Israel because no one thought to ask them to look at doing their research in this arid area.
Perhaps advertising canal frontage blocks of land with yacht anchorages on the corner of the highway and Col Rose Drive where the ridiculous quasi mining operation is, will be the next brain wave?


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