Government Steals Clean Energy Finance for Fossil Fuel Development
4 May 2020
Angus Taylor, the Energy Minister has announced a $300 million new hydrogen project, but has not specified that it be powered by renewable energy and he wants to use gas to produce the hydrogen.
There is fine rhetoric about trying to get the cost of hydrogen to $2 a kg, but the bottom line is that the fossil fuel industry will get monies from the Clean Energy Fund. And there at the head of it is Angus Taylor, looking after his mates again.
Scott Morrison has learned from his disastrous showing in the Bushfires, and only slightly belatedly and helped by horrendous examples fr om the northern hemisphere has taken the advice of experts and done quite well in the COVID-19 crisis. But now he is riding a wave, with people still preoccupied with the virus. He has $130 billion to spend to stimulate the economy, and as all stimulus will be seen as good stimulus, he can probably look after his favourites with far less scrutiny than normal. The $13 billion to keep private schools open (SMH 29/4/20) did not rate a ripple of protest. Now Angus Taylor gives $300 million to the Clean Energy Fund for hydrogen. Recently a $70 million project was announced for Green hydrogen. Does this mean that the other $230 million is fossil fuel hydrogen? And where does this gas come from? Fracking? Elsewhere in today’s paper , ‘Santos hopes for Narrabri gas verdict ‘no later than August’’ (SMH 4/5/20 p 24).
People might want to think that the strength of the public health system, the relative uselessness of the private health system, the government actually doing fiscal stimulus and paying some unemployed people a reasonable dole might have led to a new spirit of cooperation and public spiritedness in this government. Don’t be fooled, be vigilant.