Tag Archives: Senator Scott Ludlam

100% Renewable Energy Forum a Hit

On August 22 Transition Town Guildford and Hills Sustainability Group hosted an eastern suburbs forum on the Greens “Energy 2029” plan. The forum was an outstanding success, with standing room only at the Old Midland Courthouse. Over 60 interested and concerned people attended what was alternately an interesting, thought provoking and alarming evening. We apologise to the many people who tried but could not get tickets to this event. We will book a larger venue next time!


Senator Ludlam explains Energy 2029 plan to a packed Old Midland Courthouse.

MC’d by our own Barb Frey, the first speaker was Greens Senator Scott Ludlam. Senator Ludlam briefly outlined the well-known issues around climate change and our energy greedy society before moving on to solutions to the problem. In 2012 the Greens commissioned SEN (Sustainable Energy Now) to carry out a detailed technical analysis of the electricity grid in Western Australia’s southwest with the objective of determining if it could be run entirely using renewable energy.

The answer is YES…..and it can be done by 2029.

Senator Ludlam was followed by Steve Gates from SEN with a technical but accessible explanation of how this could be achieved. The major problem with renewables in the past has been that they have difficulties supplying electricity continuously such as at night or when the wind doesn’t blow. These problems have been overcome by using a mix of technologies across the grid that essentially store energy during periods of excess allowing it to be used during periods of shortage. These are:

  • Concentrating Solar Thermal (CST). Those towers surrounded by mirrors that can also store heat for days as molten salt.
  • Solar Photovoltaic (PV). The friendly solar panels adorning so many of our homes.
  • Wind energy. Wind turbines.
  • Wave energy. Power generated from the movement of waves.
  • Geothermal energy. AKA “Hot Rocks”.
  • Bioenergy. Farmers earn extra income by planting native oil mallee trees that are used to generate power.
  • Pumped hydro. During sunny/windy days excess electricity from PV’s and wind turbines is used to pump water to elevated dams which are used to generate hydro-electricity when needed.

The 19 MW Gemsolar CST plant in Spain.

All of these technologies are currently in use around the world and are rapidly decreasing in cost. They now challenge our current “dirty” fossil fuel generation systems in terms of capital cost even before health and environmental costs are considered.

I took two significant positive things away from the forum:
1. It can be done. The technology is available NOW and it is affordable.
2. The high turnout for this forum indicates a strong public interest in renewable energy and represents a demand for politicians to take immediate action to develop this type of plan.

Further details of the Energy 2029 plan are available here

Sustainable Energy Now (SEN) – http://www.sen.asn.au/

Hills Sustainability Group – http://www.hsg.org.au/

Midland Reporter article on the energy forum

Midland Reporter article on the energy forum

100% Renewable Energy Forum

Renewable Energy forum poster

Is 100% renewable energy in Perth possible? If so, what would it look like?

Come join Transition Town Guildford and the Hills Sustainability Group as we host an eastern suburbs forum on the Energy 2029 plan. Hear from Sustainable Energy Now (SEN) and Senator Scott Ludlam on how we can transition to 100% stationary energy by 2029.

Prior to the March State Election SEN was commissioned by the WA Greens to provide a brief of scenarios which would demonstrate the potential for WAʼs South West Integrated System electricity grid demand to be fully met by a combination of renewable energy generation, efficiency, storage and demand-side management within the SWIS grid, by 2029.

Presentations by Senator Scott Ludlam, SEN secretary Steve Gates, followed by Q & A.

 Date: Thursday, 22nd August

Venue: Old Midland Courthouse, 43 Helena street, Midland

Time: 6:30 pm for a 7 pm start. Finish 8 pm.

Tea, coffee and supper will be provided.

Entry by donation

Presented in collaboration with:

Hills logo

About HSG: The Hills Sustainability group is made up of people living in the hills who are interested in environmental and sustainability issues. We have a mailing list of some 100 members and our goal is to encourage the community to adopt a more sustainable lifestyle.  We are an apolitical organization that wishes to work with the community and the Shire of Mundaring. We are not interested in adversarial dialogue on issues. We believe a conciliatory approach based on trust and goodwill will better serve the community. http://www.hsg.org.au/

SEN logo

About SEN: Sustainable Energy Now, Inc. is a community based think tank formed in 2007 with the aim to promote practical, affordable strategies for the adoption of renewable energy toward a sustainable global future. SEN has a broad membership of over 200 and supporters of over 1000 ranging from energy professionals, engineers, economists, doctors and academics to politicians, retirees and students. Our endeavours are to: Research; Promote; Advocate and Simulate the renewable energy potential of WA. http://sen.asn.au/