Mercury Letters to the Editor, April 18, 2018.

Govt not helping

It is interesting to compare the energy performance of our government with the UK conservative government.

Bush bashing: Mt Kembla by Anita Pallas. Send us your photos to letters@illawarramercury.com.au or post to our Facebook page.

Bush bashing: Mt Kembla by Anita Pallas. Send us your photos to letters@illawarramercury.com.au or post to our Facebook page.

UK government policy is to close all coal power stations by 2025 unless they are fitted with carbon capture and storage. They have had a carbon tax since 2013

According to UK government publications, in 2017 the UK generated over 18% of its electricity from wind power, solar and over 11% from hydro and bioenergy. Only 6.7% of its energy came from coal. In comparison , Australia’s produced  7.4% of its electricity from wind and solar in 2016, and 7.5% from hydro and bioenergy.

So it is quite technically feasible, with today’s technology, to run our electricity system with much higher percentages of renewable generation than we do. The UK is doing it now.

The UK makes about 3 times as much steel as Australia, and it has a car industry. UK retail electricity prices are about 12.5 pence (about 23c Australian) per kwh.

In financial year 2015/16 the renewables industry employed 125,940 people in the UK and the energy storage / electric vehicles sectors employed 16,256 people. So, the UKs efforts to honour its 2015 climate change commitment have not thrown it back to the dark ages. Liddell power station generates about 3% of Australia’s electricity. So even if Liddell was completely replaced with renewable power, we would still be way behind the UK. And we would still be way short of the renewable energy target set when Abbott was PM.

Renewable energy has a lower variable production cost than coal power. As power stations reach their use by date their maintenance costs rise and their efficiency drops. So our government is not helping our industrial competitiveness by trying to keep Liddell open. It would be better for the government to expedite pumped hydro storage.

Rowan Huxtable, Mangerton

Olympics should follow 

What an excellent move by the Commonwelth Games Committee to include the Para.

Athlete events in the same programme with the able-body competitors.

Because of this smart move the whole coverage has proven to be both visually and educationally spectacular. How inspiring these athletes are; along with the interesting stories of how they got to where they are.

All we need now is for the World Olympic Committee to incorporate the same strategy in the next and future Olympics.

If there are time constraints involved; the games could be extended by a week or two rather than having two separate games. What a positive and successful change that would make.

Steven Thomas, Shellharbour

Why here?

Why oh why has a jail have to be in the Illawarra, West of the divide has ample space. They are crying out for jobs in the bush , we don’t need employment here, DO WE?

Peter Tornaros, Oak Flats

It’s just not cricket

Come on Steven Thomas. You seem to think that, just because some do it, it's Ok?  I suppose murder should be treated more leniently as well since so many people do it anyway. When I was a kid growing up in America, my Mum, a war bride, would occassionaly use the phrase  " That's not Cricket!!!"

I knew nothing of the game back then, but the context and the way she said  it made it clear that one of us kids had stepped over the line with our behavior.

Maybe our well paid first class cricketers should  have a Mum figure in their lives like my Mum.

She'd have given them a real tongue lashing. Personally, I lost interest in cricket after Dave Warner threw a punch at Joe Root prior to the previous Ashes Series. I think that said it all about cricket being a gentlemans game.

William Bielefeldt, Kembla Grange