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Saturday, September 19th, 2020

Gas supply crisis is entirely of Turnbull's making

by September 26, 2017 General

No Malcolm Turnbull, the recklessness surrounding gas supply does not lie with the Berejiklian government (“Turnbull tells NSW to get fracking”, September 26), it lies squarely on your shoulders. Your recklessness is being driven by your inability or unwillingness, or both, to stand up to the National Party, which is joined at the hip to the coal and gas industry together with a few members of your own party. Stand up and call them out. I include the rent-seekers in the gas industry who have the temerity to talk about so-called sovereign risk to their corporate rapaciousness. The only sovereign risk is to the well-being of this country, and any prime minister who does not put the common good above sectional interests is indeed reckless.

Greg Loder Springwood

The Narribri project would extract 35 billion litres of groundwater, and produce tens of thousands of tonnes of toxic salts, for which there is no safe disposal plan; and coal seam gas mining has cost Queensland farmers millions in lost revenue, according to a 2016 CSIRO study. Moreover, coal seam gas mining releases large amounts of methane, a greenhouse gas 30 times more potent than CO2. This is at odds with our need to act on climate change. And gas from Narribri has been identified as having the highest cost of production on the east coast. What about relatively low-cost, low-risk renewables?

Danya Luo Marsfield

Australia’s energy sector business leaders must be having a quiet laugh as their “manufactured” gas shortage has Malcolm Turnbull espousing the environmental destruction of his own state of NSW.

Were the Prime Minister a man of courage and foresight he would be pushing Australia into the forefront of renewable energy. Alas, Turnbull is so fearful of the far right wing of his party that he is backing the inevitable environmental destruction of NSW that fracking always causes.

Michael Davis Balmain East

How can it be that it is only now that Malcolm Turnbull is able to tell us that the energy deficit faced by Australia is “more than three times worse than the figure we were advised earlier in the year”? Either it is gross incompetence, or a cynical attempt to strengthen the case for greater access to coal-fired power or gas from fracking. If either is adopted, Australia will be unable to meet its obligations under the Paris Agreement.

Margaret McMahon Newcastle

If we don’t want to impose a tariff on our gas exports to places like Singapore, why don’t we just import the cheap gas we are exporting there, filling up the otherwise empty tankers for the return journey?

Robin Hutcheon Randwick

Amid all this talk of gas pricing and gas supply, let us not lose sight of the negative impacts coal seam gas has on farm land. The NSW chief scientist categorically stated in her review of the industry that regulation was not sufficient to prevent unintended consequences to water resources; resources our farmers cannot do without. If we have a shortage of gas, it makes more sense to divert gas exports back onshore for domestic use, rather than risking the productivity of our farms and quality of our water with the Santos coal seam gas project on the fertile soils of the Liverpool Plains around Narrabri.

Sally Kennedy Longueville

Norway has just announced that its Oil Fund, set up to preserve some of the revenue from its finite oil resources for future generations, has topped $1 trillion. Yet tonight’s news tells us our Prime Minister is begging gas exporters to let us have some of our own gas. Who were the government negotiators who “gave away” our coal, iron ore, oil and gas resources over decades? The most charitable description of the “negotiators” is incompetent, yet we have seen the same former ministers taking up advisory/consultancy positions in these industries immediately after leaving office. God help our kids, because this – and the past bunch of overseers – haven’t.

Ted Wilson Middle Cove

I understand more gas deposits have been found in Point Piper, in the eastern suburbs. Let the fracking begin.

Don Genford Granville

Speech called for

Julie Bishop should be instructed to request that the UN make available to her a short time to make a statement on behalf of the Australian government. In that address, Bishop should make it clear that as a close ally of America we are completely unaware that the US has made, or is even considering making, a declaration of war on North Korea. She should further state (regardless of probable misgivings at the White House) that Australia is well aware there exists a high degree of personal animosity and name-calling between the two leaders, but that fact alone should not represent an opportunity, by North Korea in particular, to bring on open military hostilities, with the dreadful consequences that would ensue. Indeed, for both leaders to back away from personal insults could only be helpful.

Stan Fildes Mona Vale

Elected members should put aside views of euthanasia

I understood that our parliamentarians were our elected representatives, and as such had a duty to take steps to determine the will of the members of their electorate and vote accordingly (“Foley’s tweet on assisted dying offends”, September 26). This seldom happens in modern politics. I urge the NSW Opposition Leader to ignore his personal view that euthanasia is state-sanctioned killing akin to capital punishment and start dialogue with those whom he represents and whose opinions he should be championing. The decision to end one’s life is a serious and most personal decision. Everyone should have a legal right to control their life. The proposed euthanasia laws have the world’s most stringent safeguards but more than that, they are not compulsory. No one will be forced to end their life, by the state or others. Each person is entitled to their views, but they do not have a right to force these views on others in the community. Every person should have the right to live and end their life in a way they choose, as long as it is lawful. Having other people take away this freedom should not be tolerated in our community.

Keith Woodward Avalon Beach

How disrespectful of the views of a majority of the community, and wilfully ignorant of the evidence from overseas that assisted dying laws are safe and effective. The tentacles of the Catholic Church still cling tightly around the Labor Party in NSW.

Penny Hackett Willoughby

Cost-cutting caused chaos at airport

Yesterday’s debacle at Sydney Airport has pulled the veil back on another Commonwealth agency to reveal vulnerabilities created by a decade of cost-cutting, outsourcing and so-called reform (“Inquiry into flight chaos caused by outage”, September 26). The risk of single string failure of air traffic displays bringing down the whole air traffic network should have been predictable to those tasked with the responsibility of ensuring the safe passage of millions of airline users every year. In my decade of military service in the air command and control systems environment, it was a basic operational principle that every critical control system must have 24/7 100 per cent redundancy (no chance of failure). That Sydney Airport, the busiest by far in the Australian aviation industry, has no such redundancy should be of great concern to every airline pilot and passenger in this country. I am afraid our leaders have again allowed “return to shareholders” and “efficiency dividends” to trump operational safety and common sense, and if there is not an independent review of aviation safety and the management practices of Air Services Australia, then we can’t rule out a tragedy in Australian skies.

Richard Bryce Shellharbour

Elections concern

A relative ran for the SPD in Sachsen (eastern Germany) in the recent election (“Reassurance in German and NZ polls”, September 26). The family were subjected to so much intimidation and violence, the police were constantly called to the house. The children were considered to be in danger. The family is contemplating moving to another state. “Every third person voted for the AfD – NAZIs” how can that be reassuring

Ingrid Strewe Bronte

It would seem that the reassuring message in the NZ election is that it is OK to lie to discredit your opposition. The adverts concerning a fictional $11 billion deficit by the National Party in Jacinda Ardern’s budget did the work on the electorate. It was a campaign so untruthful that it was ”awful”, according to NZ’s equivalent of Anthony Green.

Annette Kent Hunters Hill

Overseas police an issue

The federal government is proposing to allow Chinese police to interview so-called Chinese criminals in Australia (“Ground rules set for China’s fox hunting”, September 26). Will the Australian police be granted the same reciprocal rights in China ?

Paul Duncan Leura

Holding back the tide

Kasey Edwards is more than likely right about care around spelling not having a direct correlation to intelligence (“Spelling has nothing to do with intelligence”, September 26). However, someone with peerless spelling at least has taken the time to ensure the job application they’ve written has been approached with diligence, care and thought about the impact their words on the page/screen will have as they hit the eye reading them. At a time when the written word has never been under more threat, primarily due to the digital publishing tsunami sweeping aside prioritising accurate grammar, spelling and punctuation of copy in the face of the need for speed of getting content published, we grammar pedants must stand tall and protect spelling.

Paul Bugeja Newtown

Fishy business

I stopped eating salmon after the upsetting publicity about the Macquarie Harbour fish farms (“Are we eating too much salmon?”, September 26). So annoying, because I thought it was health-giving.

Pen Layton-Caisley Marrickville

White elephant’s big moment

Photo: Jason South

Our water usage has spiked dramatically in recent days but surely that’s not a problem (“Water use spikes as Sydney sprinkles”, September 26). We simply have to switch on that expensive white elephant, the desalination plant. Naturally I assume it’s been kept in pristine condition and is ready to replenish any water shortages.

Denis Suttling Newport Beach

In the dark (light) ages

Carol Button (Letters, September 26) who bemoans daylight saving. Come up to the Gold Coast and live in the Victorian era where you can enjoy your cuppa at 4.30 in the morning as the sun blazes down. I wish we had daylight saving.

Darryle Knowles Gold Coast, QLD

City losing its soul

New business architecture is taking the soul out of Sydney city (Letters, September 26). Frequently I notice yet another new structure that looks so unlike anything else in its environment that I am starting to feel alienated. It makes me wonder whether Sydney soon will be nothing more than just another big city in the world, without a personality to define it. Then I look at the harbour and see the Opera House, the amazing bridge and those beautiful, charming old ferries that take me to Circular Quay and back, as they have done for years. I know where I am again. There is no place like it.

Marny Blom Mosman

The threatened extinction of the Lady Class ferries on Sydney Harbour will be another act of vandalism by our civic leaders. People have fought over the years to save what little of old Sydney remains and are we not grateful to them? These picturesque, beautifully made boats that drift gracefully over the water are in stark contrast to the smelly, noisy, ugly craft that they will be replaced by. And why, so the punter can access Wi-Fi. Really so sad.

Lyndall Nelson Cremorne

Sweden shows way on female quotas

Quotas have worked in Sweden, so why not introduce them here? Women hold 47 per cent of jobs and 32 per cent of listed board positions there (“Top companies may be forced to take women onto boards”, September 26). In Australia, we have a similar proportion of jobs but only 19 per cent of ASX200 board positions. Research shows companies with more female directors outperform others.

Ingrid Radford Waverton

Earth to Coalition

Our government can’t even build a world-class broadband network; how on earth are they going to create a decent space agency? Perhaps the fireworks shops in Fyshwick will supply the rockets?

Tony Heathwood Kiama Downs

Let’s hope that Monday’s announcement of an Australian space agency isn’t just the start of another Groundhog Day. Plans from 1993 failed on the launch pad under the Howard government.

Perhaps this new vehicle will achieve earth orbit.

Jonathan Mobbs Malua Bay

NSW’ earthly works

So Australia wants to develop a space industry (“Outback to outer space, we’re back”, September 26). With the NSW government full steam ahead on 20th-century roads and tunnels that clog and pollute, 19th-century trams that stop at red lights, heavy rail networks that are incompatible with new “metro” rail, and an airport in Sydney that fails to perform too many times for spurious reasons, I’d suggest that the capital-input decision makers look outside the Premier State if they want to be in the 21st century.

John Kingsmill Fairlight

Head protection

I, too, pedalled to school on winter mornings Peter Jeffery (Letters, September 26). Also without a helmet. But then, nothing could have protected you from the Christian Brothers.

Philip Moore Fairlight

Warmly received

I know this hot, dry weather is very bad on the end of the earth/global warming front; but it really is excellent for getting one’s washing dry.

Jennifer Parkin Point Frederick