Dutton goes nuclear
4 August 2022
Peter Dutton’s election to Liberal Party leader has served as a belated victory for those who wanted to see Malcolm Turnbull nudged out of the spotlight by a true conservative.
Scott Morrison’s side-step into power was always a ‘what the?’ moment for blue ribbon Liberals – a factional game that ultimately led to a slow death for federal conservatism. However, since the May election Dutton has been oddly quiet. Those wondering what sort of leader he planned to be were left in (concerned) suspense.
They had a good reason to be worried. Conservatives were forced to write off Barnaby Joyce’s replacement in the Nationals when David Littleproud flopped over in worship of Net Zero and by doing so, threw rural communities into the globalist mincing machine. Politically speaking, he’s compost.
Earlier this week, Dutton quietly posted a message on his Facebook page that indicated that maybe – just maybe – the federal Liberals had awoken and were ready to mount some sort of legitimate defence against Albanese.
‘We need a credible path forward on emissions reduction and it’s time our country had an honest and informed discussion.’
The message was followed by a picture that read:
‘It’s time our country had an honest and informed discussion on nuclear energy. We will lead it.’
Okay, so it is a bit light on detail, but we can safely assume that Dutton is leaning toward a nuclear future to woo back all those wealthly Teal seats.
Nuclear has long been the obvious solution for energy. Regardless of how much you love fossil fuels or the merits of their use, nuclear is the only source of energy that can supply humanity for billions of years. And Australia owns the bulk of it. If we weren’t behaving like a Hippie backwater stuck in outdated 1970s fear-mongering, we’d be the global advocates for nuclear energy and turn ourselves into a very wealthy nation by doing so.
Dutton has the advantage that it is next to impossible to argue against nuclear. If Labor, the Greens, and Teals believe that the world is going to ‘burst into flames’ due to fossil fuel emissions, the only viable solution is nuclear power, as renewables come with hefty carbon footprint of their own.
The reason the Left refuses to endorse nuclear energy has nothing to do with cost, safety, or build time and everything to do with the inconvenient truth that nuclear destroys their renewables investments and empties the wealth of ‘green’ billionaires. Nuclear doesn’t require a parallel energy grid, battery storage, or the complete re-wiring of the nation. It’s ‘plug and play’. Done and dusted. Off the shelf, proven, and ideal for Australian geography.
Dutton is not a fool. He recognises that it is too late to walk back the ridiculous climate dogma the former Liberal Party engaged in. During the election, the majority of ministers in the Morrison government ran the same apocalyptic rhetoric as Extinction Rebellion, validating their fringe lunacy and paving the way for the success of renewables-funded Teals. To walk that back would be to admit Liberal ministers were prepared to lie in their pursuit of the green vote. Or, perhaps even more damaging, expose them as intellectually fickle with about as much sense as their cardboard cut-out likenesses.
So, for better or worse, the Liberals are stuck with their Net Zero idiocy.
Labor have decided to polish their emissions virtue by gutting the agriculture industry. This will not work in their favour as Sri Lanka, the Netherlands, Canada, and Italy have shown. Dutton has sensibly decided to take the bulk of emissions reduction out of the energy sector while offering exactly what the public have been demanding for years – reliable energy that is based on Australian resources.
Plenty of polls have shown the public amassing behind Dutton’s nuclear pledge. It’s a shame the state Liberals are determined to build their nests in opposition.
New South Wales Treasurer Matt Kean – a man headed for the abyss of electoral defeat – was the first to criticise Dutton. Kean’s fetish for renewables saw him accuse Dutton of ‘chasing unicorns’. It’s a strange comment, especially as both the European Union and the United Nations have ear-marked nuclear power as the path to Net Zero. If Kean is prepared to trust their judgment on Climate Change, why not nuclear as well?
‘So people talking about nuclear as an asset to our energy challenges right now are literally chasing unicorns. This is a fantasy, which is not ready at the moment,’ said Kean, forgetting that nuclear is an established technology. Australia has had three rectors in NSW and the rest of the world have hundreds.
‘But who knows, at some time in the future, we may crack the code of small nuclear reactors and that could play a role in our energy mix. But right now, we are focusing on the things that we know work [and] that we know are going to drive down household bills and that’s why we’ve got our energy roadmap here in NSW to roll out solar, wind, [and] pumped hydro storage with transmissions lines. Because we know that that’s the best way to lower household bills to keep the lights on and to deliver clean, reliable electricity.’
Let’s hope that, as Treasurer, Kean is better with numbers than he is with facts.
Out of nuclear and renewables, only nuclear has been proven to deliver reliable, low-emissions energy. There are 440 nuclear reactors in the world, all working just fine. Our neighbours in Asia are building more nuclear reactors than anyone else, with China leading the way with 33 and India following at 12.
Renewables are yet to deliver on their promises. Globally, they under-perform on spec while an alarming number of solar and wind farms sit abandoned. Australia is even covering prime agricultural land with solar panels on the edge of a global food crisis. If Kean had bothered to run the numbers, he would realise the impracticality of an energy grid made from renewables. The physical space and resources required are environmentally ruinous, and even if it were ever built, it would have to be replaced every 10-20 years. If he is worried about plastic straws in landfill, wait until he sees wind turbine blades.
Cheap? Effective? Reliable? Renewables are none of these things, but they do make a lot of money on the back of government subsidies. They also present an unacceptable security risk, with the bulk of their production coming out of China – considered to be the most dangerous aggressor in the world. Only a fool would hand Beijing the off-switch to the power grid.
Dutton knows that the public are smarter than the NSW Treasurer. Australians want a power grid that they own and control – one that actually works and that isn’t beholden to a Pacific communist power.
Peter Dutton may not have the courage to contradict Net Zero (at least, not yet), but his nuclear solution gives the nation the correct outcome – power.