Note: Where available, the PDF/Word icon below is provided to view the complete and fully formatted document
Does Mr Barnett believe that wherever he stands, the sun shines for 24 hours a day?

Download PDFDownload PDF


Media Releases The Hon Wilson Tuckey MP Minister for Forestry and Conservation

AFFA00/62TU 1 September 2000


Colin Barnett's launch yesterday of a 20-kilowatt solar generator highlights the difference between the capacity of solar energy and tidal power to service Australia's future industrial electricity needs.

While solar power has a valuable contribution to make, a small automobile motor can generate 20 kilowatts of electricity, and such units are advertised in the WA media at prices ranging from a few thousand dollars.

Solar generators require battery storage and electronic invertors to provide electricity suitable for electrical appliances and industrial motors.

Solar power has a distinct role to play in low consumption, remote area demand, such as homesteads or small towns, and the Commonwealth Government has provided $10 million since July 1999 to provide subsidies for this purpose.

By comparison, the proposed Derby Tidal project will have water storage capacity to produce over 100 megawatts of electricity (the present demand is 50 megawatts),

The future potential is many, many gigawatts of harvestable tidal energy to provide clean electricity to service such economic producers as aluminium smelters and electric arc furnaces where the demand of a single facility is measured in hundreds of megawatts hardly likely to be supplied by a small car engine.

The entire household sector in Australia consumes approximately 16 per cent of all electricity generated; industry approximately 12 per cent and activities such as tourism and commerce, a tiny 2 per cent.

The other 70 per cent go to the big export oriented industries that can convert our raw materials into finished products.

Why then does Colin Barnett turn his face on his own words that renewable projects need to be 'realistic and practical'?

Further inquires:

Mr Tuckey's office: Graeme Hallett 0419 688 440


Return to: Tuckey Media Release Archive