Constantly changing the story about why we need Marinus does little to make it sound convincing or credible.
In 2016 a single cable was proposed as a back-up after Basslink failed. That sounded reasonable.
Before any further details arrived, someone figured out if the Australian Government were going to pay, why stop at one, why not two cables. Why not double our renewable energy production, send it northwards, help the nation, save the planet and make a motza.
Guy Barnett will need to explain how the interconnector will help deliver services for the state, writes Ruth Forrest
The proposed $4bn Marinus interconnector will foreshadow a second wave of hydro industrialisation, will lower power prices, and fill the government's coffers to the brim so we can house everyone in need, provide timely health care to all and fix all the state's current woes.
If this past year has been tough, brace for worse years ahead.
Expenses in 2026-27 are expected to be less in nominal terms than what the government is promising to spend next year, in 2023-24. Remove the extra interest on the increased debt and it's even less. Adjust for inflation expected to average around 3.5 per cent makes it a looming disaster.
As a service deliverer it can only mean one thing - less services.
Revenue will grow by less than one per cent a year. We will continue to spend more than we receive. The promise of achieving an operating surplus has been deferred. The chances of an overall surplus in the future, calculated by including infrastructure and other capital outlays, has vanished.
Premier Rockcliff couldn’t have chosen a worse time to propose building the Macquarie Point stadium.
The State budget paints a bleak picture. Next year, 2023/24 will see the fourth operating deficit in a row.
There’s not enough cash coming in the door to pay operating expenses - the cost of day-to-day operations not including new buildings and infrastructure. The latter funded from a mixture of Federal capital grants plus more borrowings.
Paying interest on the debt requires further borrowings.
The AFL stadium has made people realise just how the GST system works, writes Ruth Forrest.
If you want to know what people are thinking, try door knocking.
Having spent the best part of the past month doing just that, I, as part of my recent election campaign, from Burnie to Smithton, across Somerset to downtown Queenstown and Tullah, I discovered that encountering a thylacine was more likely than meeting a stadium supporter.
WHAT is the role of a member of parliament as opposed to a politician?
For some, parliamentarians are mere delegates, proxies who carry out the wishes of those in the electorate with the loudest voices, or in some case, the most money.
For me a representative's role couldn't be better described than by unashamedly plagiarising the words Edmund Burke delivered almost 250 years ago after being elected to the House of Commons.
Our parliament is not a congress of members from different and hostile interests; which interests each must maintain, as an agent and advocate, against other agents and advocates; but Parliament is a deliberative assembly of one state, with one interest, that of the whole; where, not local purposes, not local prejudices ought to guide, but the general good, resulting from the general reason of the whole.
As the end of 2022 rapidly approaches, our community prepares for the festive season and for many, a break from work and time for family and reflection.
After two years of the COVID-19 pandemic many people are feeling tired and feeling the pressure of rising costs of living, housing shortages, prolonged waiting times for healthcare and ever-increasing power bills, just to name a few.
In an illuminating answer on November 10th to my Question on Notice, Resources Minister Barnett gave a fresh insight into Hydro Tasmania.
Without Marinus, Battery of the Nation (BotN) projects proposed by Hydro won’t proceed leaving Hydro struggling to maintain its “existing and ageing assets”, Minister Barnett revealed.
The glory days of the first wave of hydro industrialisation are over.
It’s been 30 years since the last hydro power station was built, yet Hydro still owes $720 million and is finding it more difficult to hang onto funds needed to look after its ageing assets, in part due to the point-blank refusal by successive governments to find other sources of revenue, instead using Hydro as a convenient ATM.
Will Tasmanian consumers end up subsidising new wind farms just so the latter can send their goods to market via the Marinus Link, asks Ruth Forrest
THE list of infrastructure projects that would enhance our standard of living and unlock the benefits that will make us a more productive, fairer and equitable society is limited only by our imagination.
Selecting which project, trying to assess costs and benefits, particularly the flow-on benefits from well-planned infrastructure, is the perennial challenge for public policy.
The crisis in the national electricity market has confirmed one thing: Despite the recently announced power price rises, we in Tasmania are better off than other eastern states.
We are now self-sufficient with renewable energy. Wind produces 20 per cent of our needs with hydro power comfortably providing the remainder. Basslink can also import electricity and Hydro has gas peaking units that can be used if needed.
Voters need to be well informed, and not succumb to the scare tactics of the major parties, writes Ruth Forrest
OUR parliaments, both federal and state, are made up of individuals elected to serve the people. But most have been anointed by the major parties, which are now run by a coterie of largely nameless officials. Other candidates are parachuted in as "captain's picks" with the party membership having no opportunity to vet or even contribute to the selection of candidates that are likely to represent the views of their party and electorate. As a consequence, members have deserted the major parties in droves because they feel unheard and ignored.
THE Premier's recent State of the State address, a rallying cry to Tasmanians seeking to assure us we're heading in the right direction.
The reality is it fails to adequately discuss the underlying problems that continue to face us.
That's not a criticism per se, more a comment on the nature of a small state in a much larger federation, where macro settings beyond our direct control have much more impact than anything state or local governments can do.
We need to understand and discuss the broader issues if we are to make real progress for the benefit of all.
Energy security, prices and the environmental impact of production all matter to Tasmanians. Much of the wheeling and dealing occurs behind closed doors. The information that enters the public arena is usually heavily redacted with claims of 'commercial in confidence' at every opportunity.