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Byron Shire
March 5, 2021

Matthew Wright, Martin wrong

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My dear friend, Philip Rubinstein 1934–2021

I first met Phil on a rain-soaked day outside my house in Brunswick Terrace, Mullum. It was an accidental encounter, but we soon got stuck into a conversation about the parlous state of Australian universities.

Other News

Heritage Bruns?

David Kolb, Brunswick Head When Mathew O’Reilly spoke to Council regarding heritage listing for parts of Brunswick Heads he was quoted...

Byron’s new road: the good and not so

After more than 30 years of talk, debate, disagreements, tears and political gridlock, Byron Bay has a new road to divert traffic from the CBD to the southern end of town.

Be proud of Ballina, help clean up our beaches

This Sunday, 7 March, Ballina Coastcare is inviting everyone who cares about Ballina's environment to Step Up To Clean Up, and join a special event for Clean Up Australia Day.

Lifting the lid on plans to build a retirement village in Ewingsdale

The letter sent to the residents of Ewingsdale last year by holiday park owner Ingenia seemed fairly innocuous at first glance...

Tweed Council staff’s delegated powers debated

The question of what staff and councillors get to decide in relation to development applications was raised by Tweed Councillor Ron Cooper at the last Tweed Shire Council meeting.

Suffolk Park pump track for Cavanbah

Kathy Gleeson, Suffolk Park When I first heard of, and supported, the pump track at the Linda Vidler Park in Suffolk...

As author of a book on energy Martin Nicholson, in his April 23 letter has made remarkably uninformed comments on the Zero Carbon Australia (ZCA) plan. The plan shows one path for Australia to 100 per cent renewable energy. By making Australia a leader in renewable energy it would support our prosperity and help ensure a world in which we, and our grandchildren, can enjoy.
The plan’s costing was based on a conservative analysis of existing technology. It will make the cost of electricity cheaper than it would be with continued reliance on increasingly expensive fossil fuel.

The fact that nearly all second generation nuclear plants may still be operating says nothing about the political or economic ability to build lots more of them!

Third generation plants are being built in China and the US he says. Does that confirm that Matthew is right – none have been built?

The ZCA plan includes a small percentage of PV with battery storage such as for off-grid power. Here it is generally not more expensive than the alternatives and will get cheaper. (As well-installed grid connected solar is already reducing the price of electricity for everyone just as it has done in Germany because it reduces costs from expensive peaking generators.)

But ZCA never proposed to use solar PV with battery storage to replace coal plants. The plan showed that it could be done with a combination of widely scattered wind and solar thermal power with cheap hot molten salt storage (thus providing better than baseload power), along with a reconfigured grid, efficiency, fuel shifting and transport changes.

Nuclear certainly cannot provide emission-free energy in Australia within 10 years, nor on a global level on any time scale relevant to stabilising our climate. It is too costly, slow and dangerous. It would be a terrible investment to try, wasting money that could build infrastructure (solar, wind, wave etc) to harness energy from essentially free and inexhaustible fuel.

Paul Taylor, Mt Warning. Author of The Biochar Revolution


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Ben Hamilton riding for kids with cancer

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Brunswick Heads marina berths to increase

Questions remain unanswered around a press release from Nationals MLC Ben Franklin’s office regarding a $2.8 million upgrade to the Brunswick Heads boat harbour. According...

Helping Our Kids, help our kids

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Nimbin medicinal cannabis event, March 27

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