Nile’s electricity inquiry stitch-up locks out renewable energy future

April 15, 2015

A behind-closed-door deal between the Baird government and the Christian Democrats has locked renewable energy and low income households out of next month’s upper house inquiry into the proposed privatisation of the state’s poles and wires network, according to Greens NSW MP John Kaye.

Dr Kaye said: “Fred Nile’s first act in the new parliament is to set up a stacked inquiry designed to silence opposition to the government’s poles and wires privatisation.

“Mr Nile continues his strong track record of rolling over to the government on every critical issue.

“This is a stitch up job, clearly written in collaboration with the Baird government.

“This inquiry will comprehensively ignore the impacts of electricity privatisation on the future of renewable energy.

“There will be no space for roof-top solar, wind or solar thermal. There will no voice for technologies of the future that stand to lose badly in a privately-owned electricity network.

“Completely absent from the terms of reference are the consequences of the Baird government’s power sell-off on low-cost battery storage and household standalone power generation.

“It’s like the inquiry was happening 25 years ago.

“The absence of a Green on the inquiry guarantees that there will no focus on clean energy technologies.

“The Coalition and Christian Democrat majority will ensure that the dire implications of network privatisation for low income households will be given little or no consideration.

“Contrary to what the Rev Nile told the media prior to the election this inquiry has a pro-privatisation majority.

“The hard questions will not be asked and the most severe critics will not be given a hearing.

“The Greens will not be represented on this important inquiry, despite being the only parliamentary party to have a consistent record of opposing electricity privatisation.

“The biased terms of reference raise real questions about the counterpart of the deal that Fred Nile has clearly cut with the government.

“Mike Baird’s senior staffer Bay Warburton has been seen frequently entering Fred Nile’s parliamentary office.

“It remains to be seen which of Fred Nile’s pet projects are to be given a hearing from the government now that his inquiry has been heavily stacked in their favour,” said Dr Kaye.

For more information: John Kaye 0407 195 455

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