Coal obsession rort

The Auditor-General last week reported Shine Energy incapable of delivering on the $3.3 million ‘bankable’ feasibility study for the Collinsville coal-fired power station.  Due diligence was incomplete, checks were not comprehensive, a probity plan was not developed, there was no conflict of interest register and it was not value for money. Read the full story here in The Mandarin.

Hardly surprising for a small company that did not put in a bid in the first place.

AEMO’s 2020 Integrated System Plan does not call for such a study, no other operator was prepared to do it given the high financial risks – risks that Shine wanted indemnification for to the tune of $14 billion!

Who is to blame? Minister for Energy, Angus Taylor drove it, the National Party pushed it along, the PM went along for the ride, and all for their ideological obsession of propping up coal.

This project could never stack up because renewables are already way cheaper. It’s over for new and old coal.

It’s as if the bushfires never happened, the massive rainfall and unprecedented floods in NSW are not happening now, temperatures globally have not risen by 1.2oC or the Arctic is not melting. 

It’s as if the scientists did not tell us decades ago that catastrophic weather events are the result of burning fossil fuels and we do more of that at our peril.

Watching over the rorts

The ANAO has lost funding of $23m in real terms since 2016-17, according to analysis by the Centre for Public Integrity. This coincides with a period of some of the most blatant political rorts in history. Who knows what’s happened to the trillions spent during Covid? One thing is for sure – the ANAO cannot possibly audit this spending with its current budget. 

Doubtless that’s the whole idea.

photo: the Queensland Times

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