ABC CENSORS "AUSTRALIAN SUSTAINABLE ENERGY - BY THE NUMBERS" by top Australian bionic ear electrical engineer Professor Peter Seligman

Top Australian electrical engineer Professor Peter Seligman (University of Melbourne) has written a very topical and  important book fro Australia at this moment entitled "Australian Sustainable Energy - by the numbers" (available for free download c/- the University  of Melbourne Energy Institute: ). 

However, using the ABC Search function to "search the entire ABC site" for the terms "australian sustainable energy  - by the numbers" and "peter seligman" yields zero (0) results (27 December 2011); repeat ABC Searches (24 April 2012)  for these 2 terms respectively yielded  2 results (both posted listener comments by Dr Gideon Polya) and 3 results
(all posted listener comments, 2 by Dr Gideon Polya). A Google Search for these 2 terms (24 April 2012) yielded 2,150 and 46,700 results, respectively.

In comparison an ABC Search (27 December 2011) for the term "lord monckton" yields 194 results for this non-scientist, climate change sceptic, climate change denialist, UK populist lecturer and a 24 April 2012 ABC Search yielded 151 results.

This what the prestigious University of Melbourne's  Melbourne Energy Institute had to say about this important book about which the ABC appears determined - for whatever reason -  to keep Australians in the dark: "

The Melbourne Energy Institute is pleased to offer Dr Peter Seligman's new book Australian Sustainable Energy- by the numbers or free download.

Based on (English Physicist) David MacKay's Sustainable Energy - without the hot air, Peter Seligman's book provides a clear account of Australia's renewable energy potential. Peter has analysed a raft of available technologies, and offers a blueprint of a nation-wide renewable energy system based on the most efficient mix of technology, societal, and habitual changes.

Peter's approach is to identify and emphasise strategies based on what the numbers dictate here and now. He is critical of "futile greeness", namely, actions based overly on sentiment as opposed to substance. In this manner he offers a range of responses, suitable to different levels of the energy system, which reliable live up to the adage 'bang for buck'"  (see: ). 

Here is my review of this important book ("Book review: "Australian Sustainable Energy  - by the numbers" by Peter Seligman",  Open Forum, 16 March 2010) :

"Professor Peter Seligman is not alone in estimating that Australia can rapidly and relatively cheaply ($253 billion) achieve 100% sustainable energy.

In 2010, top electrical engineer Professor Peter Seligman from the University of Melbourne has published a very important book entitled, 'Australian Sustainable Energy  - by the numbers' that sets out how Australia can rapidly install 100% renewable and geothermal electrical power for $253 billion.

It is published under a creative commons licese and can be obtained by free download HERE.

'Australian Sustainable Energy  - by the numbers' was inspired by 'Sustainable Energy – without the hot air', an analysis of how Britain can move to 100% renewable energy and written by Professor David J.C, MacKay FRS. Mackay is Professor of natural philosophy in the Department of Physics at the prestigious University of Cambridge and chief scientific adviser to the UK Department of Energy and Climate Change.

A detailed synopsis of  'Sustainable Energy – without the hot air' can be found HERE. And that book can be downloaded for free HERE.

'Australian Sustainable Energy  - by the numbers' is  an Australia specific offshoot of Professor MacKay’s analysis of sustainable energy for the  UK and sets out how Australia can meet the challenge of the worsening climate emergency by rapidly switching to 24/7, base-load, 100% renewable plus geothermal energy.

The author, Dr Peter Seligman, is an outstanding electrical engineer who has been a major player in the development of the bionic year. He studied electrical engineering at Monash University, Melbourne, Australia, and subsequently completed a PhD in 1973 with a thesis entitled, 'Auditory Pattern transmission'.

According to the Bionic Ear Institute in Melbourne, “Professor Peter Seligman designed the first portable speech processor for the University of Melbourne bionic ear device and was a key member of Professor Graeme Clark's team that developed the Bionic Ear. Professor Seligman has joined The Bionic Ear Institute and will help guide staff in research, development and commercialisation.”

'Australian Sustainable Energy  - by the numbers' is a rational, quantitative analysis by a top electrical engineer of how Australians can individually and collectively move to 100% sustainable  energy.

Chapters 4 and 5 are the  key chapters specifying and costing how Australian can rapidly move to 100% renewable energy.

For a very detailed and exhaustive review of the whole book see, Review: Peter Seligman’s ”Australian Sustainable Energy – by the numbers”. Climate catastrophe avoidable,  Bellaciao, 9 July 2010.

Chapter 4: A strategy for Australia, attempts to provide a costed strategy for Australia to become a zero carbon country. A total of 57 GW (Giga watts or billion watts) of stationary electrical power disseminated by direct current transmission (DC transmission) is, conservatively, provided by 1.6 GW  Hydroelectric (as it exists). 15 GW geothermal (currently measured resource fully used), 0.4 GW wave (3% of coastline), 20 GW solar (concentrated thermal, 0,06% of country) and 20 GW wind (0.13% of country, compatible with farming).

A key part of the proposal involves a 200 GWh “battery” to provide 24/7, baseload electrical power, this involving a huge saltwater pond on Australia’s southern rim Nullabor Desert to hydrologically store all of Australia’s renewable energy. 

Chapter 5: The Bill, estimates that, “including the cost of the pipes and turbines , to convert our existing electrical power system to completely renewable sources, we will need … $253 billion … over say 25 years. That’s about $10 billion per year or about $500 per person per year or $1.40 per person per day”.  

The breakdown is: 

  • $198 billion (wind, solar an geothermal power stations)
  • $20 billion (high voltage DC power lines)
  • $33 billion (for turbines and pipes associates with hydrological storage of power by pumping sea water to Nullabor Desert storage ponds)
  • $2 billion (construction of coastal Nullabor Desert storage pond dams)

This key chapter successively considers  the bill, job creation, feasibility of 100% renewable energy, the cost of the electricity (12 cents /KWh), CO2 production associated with construction (payback 1 year), security of supply, thermal storage with concentrated solar (currently applied  internationally) and feasibility (cf the US industrial transformation from cars to tanks, Liberty shops and bombers  in Work War 2).

Professor Peter Seligman is not alone in estimating that Australia can rapidly and relatively cheaply ($253 billion) achieve 100% sustainable energy.

Beyond Zero Emissions published a detailed report entitled 'Australian Sustainable Energy. Zero Carbon Australia Stationary Energy Plan' by  a team of 20 engineers that costs 100% renewable energy for Australia (electricity supply plus replacement of oil with electricity  for cars, freight rail and passenger rail transport) at $370 billion.

The breakdown is: 

  • $175 billion (concentrated solar thermal, CST)
  • $8 billion (back-up hearers)
  • $6 billion (bioenergy supply from crop waste)
  • $72 billion (wind power)
  • $92 billion (HVDC and HVAC transmission)
  • $17 billion (off-grid CST plus backup)

'Australian Sustainable Energy  - by the numbers', by Peter Seligman is a very important book for Australia an indeed the World. As an expertly compiled, case study  assessment of how one of the world’s worst per capita greenhouse gas (GHG) polluting countries, Australia, can convert to 100% sustainable energy, this book is also an important book for the World. 

One must sadly note that in July 2010 when I visited the taxpayer-funded Australian Broadcasting Corporation (the ABC, Australia's equivalent of the British BBC) and searched the entire ABC site for "peter seligman" (key accomplishments being the Bionic Ear and now this blueprint for 100% sustainable energy for Australia) I found  zero (0) reportage."