With the federal election campaign underway in all but name, the stars have been aligning for a move to the Lodge by Labor leader Bill Shorten on the back of Greens’ preferences.
But – and it’s a big but – maybe Labor has shot itself in the foot with its totally uncosted, unrealistic energy/climate change policy, particularly its plan to mandate that 50 percent of all new vehicle sales are electric models by 2030. This would be a massive jump from a tiny 0.1 percent in 2018 cited recently by Treasurer, Josh Frydenberg.
For those who think that will be a good thing, consider a few pertinent facts – electric cars are much dearer for starters – Hyundai for example has just announced an all-electric version of its small Kona SUV. It has good performance and reasonable driving range, but nudging $60,000 is more than twice the price of petrol and diesel versions. There are cheaper electric cars available, but they have limited driving range, and there is the more expensive Tesla, which is way off most people’s shopping list.
When these hordes of compulsory new electric models need recharging it will take up to 16 hours on a home charger or one to two hours on a fast charger such as the ones Labor says it will establish around Australia.
So instead of waiting a couple of minutes at a servo, lucky drivers in our brave new world will be waiting at least an hour if and when a vacant fast charger becomes available.
Great if you are on a trip, with Australia’s vast distances. One enthusiastic guest on the ABC recently asked if Norway can do it, why can’t Australia? That’s the logic of these green zealots, there is no comparison at all between the Nullarbor and a nation better know for fjords.
Where is all the extra electricity going to come from to supply the surge in power demand? Coal is a no-no; baseload power will be a pipe dream under Labor’s 50 percent renewables plan, so too bad if it’s cloudy, calm or dark.
But even more importantly, what is Shorten going to replace fuel excise revenue with? Even the ABC has spotted a potential pitfall here – last year:
Drivers of traditional petrol-powered cars contribute to the cost of the road network every time they fill up.
For each litre of fuel you buy, you are contributing around 40.9 cents to the Federal Government’s coffers.
It is a huge amount of cash. Total fuel excise revenue is about $18 billion a year, or five per cent of total revenue, according to the 2018-19 federal budget… It is the biggest road-use related pool of revenue the government receives…
I could go on, but there are so many holes in Labor’s plan, you could lose a Mack truck in them. A Mack pulling a four-trailer road train.
If the coalition can get this across to regional mums and dads in their practical SUV’s and tradies who love their 4WD Ford Rangers, Toyota Hiluxes and Mitsubishi Tritons – they outsell most passenger vehicles now – there could be a big slide away from Labor.
Or is this just another Labor ploy to grab the headlines about saving the planet without any real desire to actually implement it?
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