Letters to the editor

LIMITED HOURS: Readers are asking why Morisset police station (pictured) isn't open 24 hours, like its sister stations at Toronto and Belmont. Picture: David Stewart
LIMITED HOURS: Readers are asking why Morisset police station (pictured) isn't open 24 hours, like its sister stations at Toronto and Belmont. Picture: David Stewart

More Morisset inequality

I WAS interested to read the letters in your paper (“Police station hours”, Lakes Mail, June 15) in regards to the new Toronto and Belmont police stations being open 24 hours, but the Morisset station only being open Monday to Friday, from 9am to 4pm.

This only goes to show the inequality that we at this end of the lake have to put up with. We have disgraceful roads, footpaths are few and far between, and kerbing and guttering is a rarity. And don't get me started about the sewer.

So now we are saying to the criminals it's OK to come out after 4pm and at weekends because we have Toronto and Belmont to protect us. Give me a break.

Come on, council, our money is the same colour as everyone else's, so how about doing the right think and start looking after us in this area?

- Ron Patterson, Wyee

Better behaved in Morisset

I WAS pleased and pleasantly surprised that both Belmont and Toronto police stations are open 24/7 (“Police station hours”, Lakes Mail, June 15).

One can only assume the opening hours at Morisset police station – Monday to Friday from 9am to 4pm – is because the south-western side of Lake Macquarie has a far lower crime rate than its eastern and northern neighbors.

Or could the police force be simply following council practice of preferential locations?

Personally  l would like to think otherwise, that we are simply better citizens, and have less need for a safe refuge.

- Carl Stevenson, Dora Creek

A low-carbon future

OUR Federal Government is insistent that electricity generated by “clean coal” needs to be part of our future but it faces a number of hurdles if this is to be realised.

The latest report from the Climate Council shows that there are now strong financial, as well as environmental, reasons for transforming from using coal to forms of renewable energy for the generation of electrical power.

Currently wind-generated power plants in Australia are operating profitably at AU$61-118 /MWh. For existing Australian solar-power plants the range is AU$78-140/MWh.

In some overseas countries both wind and solar plants are down to AU$40/MWh and are continuing to fall.

Combined cycle gas stations figures are AU$94-114 AU$/MWh, based on current Australian gas prices.

In comparison, the “clean coal” alternatives are ultra super critical coal with power costs of AU$134-203/MWh; and coal with CCS (carbon capture and storage) at AU$352+/MWh, and these costs appear to be rising.

Clean coal plants also take much longer to construct, and construction costs are much greater than renewable plants. And they require a much longer operating life to recoup these costs.

And “clean coal” plants, even with CCS, are still relatively polluting. One of the only two such operating plants, Petra Nova in the US, generates 21 million tonnes of carbon dioxide per year, with CCS treating 10 per cent of this to achieve a net reduction of 1.5 to 1.6 million tonnes of carbon dioxide.

The Climate Council report also highlights that the states which have the highest percentage of power generated by renewable means have the lowest rates of increase in power prices.

It is difficult to see how “clean coal” can have a significant role in a low-carbon power generation future if electricity is to remain both reliable and affordable.

- Richard Mallaby, Wangi Wangi

Please explain

WHAT a fine mess the invasion of Iraq has left us all in. An invasion built on American lies.  Mr Howard, “please explain”.

- Richard Ryan, Summerland Point