THE cost of Australia's new fleet of submarines could blow out to $150 billion after the defence white paper confirmed the price tag.— Askgerbil Now (@Askgerbil) March 2, 2016
.@BobNew8 Taxpayers to fork out $150 billion to assure petrol deliveries from Singapore. Cheaper to innovate. #QT https://t.co/DAqv4LTbsI— Askgerbil Now (@Askgerbil) March 1, 2016
.@BobNew8 Senate inquiry was completed June 2015 but the information was ignored in the Defence White Paper https://t.co/NvLsFhfKVq #auspol— Askgerbil Now (@Askgerbil) March 1, 2016
Dear @TheIPA, Oil companies prefer Singapore refineries. Aus taxpayers kick in $150 billion for submarines to secure fuel supply. Discuss.— Askgerbil Now (@Askgerbil) March 1, 2016
The transition from leaded to unleaded transport fuels begun in 1981 with a target end-date of 2002 is a good example of how the adoption of a long-term policy simplifies the making of investment decisions of stakeholders for new plant and equipment.
Vehicle manufacturers at present face considerable uncertainty in predicting which of the emerging clean fuel transport systems will win out in the long run.
|Fuel cell electric vehicle with battery for short trips|
Adopting a policy for the introduction of electric vehicles would reduce that uncertainy. Allowance can still be made for competing technologies that are quickly evolving. Fuel cells for instance that produce electric power from, say, hydrogen, are not that dissimilar from batteries that store and recharge electrolyte in situ. Vehicles using either, or both, of these energy supply systems would be powered by electric motors regardless of which these two evolving technologies provides the electricity. One version of electric vehicles might use a battery for short trips and activate a hydrogen fuel cell on longer trips after the battery charge is depleted.
Both renewable and fossil fuel investments for generating and distributing electricity can be utilised at close to full capacity to provide electricity for recharging electric battery powered vehicles.
Both of these investments can also be used to manufacture hydrogen for fuel-cell powered electric vehicles.
This plan would encourage continuing expansion and technological advances in renewable energy without the need to immediately write off substantial capital invested in fossil fuel power plants.
It would give this existing investment (or excess investment) in fossil fuel plants both an extended life and a definite expiry date. Rather than keeping them running at partial capacity to supply a diminishing share of fixed energy needs, they could begin to take over demand for transport fuels. The expiry date for these power plants would be extended to the date by which ongoing investments in renewable energy are planned to take over 100 percent of both fixed energy and transport energy needs of the Australian economy.
From a paper by Troy Whitford, Fuel Mandates have a History of Success and a Lesson for Bio Fuels Implementation. Australian Policy and History, April 2010.
"In 1981, Australian state and federal transport ministers met to address pollution problems. Driving the shift towards unleaded petrol were vast environmental and health concerns.
During the 1980s, automobile associations were critical of the introduction of unleaded fuel. The RACV opposed the implementation believing it was too costly. The oil industry was cynical, too, arguing the introduction of unleaded fuel did not follow from a technological breakthrough but rather a decision by ministers. Without doubt, the position taken by oil companies, automobile associations and other stakeholders regarding unleaded fuel changed over time.
Despite opposition to unleaded fuel, the Transportation Council adopted a program to mandate unleaded petrol by 1985. The implementation policy for unleaded fuel was undertaken in stages. Initially, regulations were made calling for all new motor vehicles made after January 1986 (manufactured within Australia or imported) to meet the new fuel requirements. The policy then called for a complete phase out of unleaded fuel by 2002. Prior to the national mandate, states had led the way on unleaded fuel of which NSW took the lead. The decision to mandate was essential for implementing unleaded fuel. It forced car manufacturers, oil producers and consumers to make the transition."