Letters to the editor

NEW ORDER: Reader Richard Mallaby says that unlike coal-fired power stations such as Tarong, pictured, wind and solar energy plants aren't so dependent on water.
NEW ORDER: Reader Richard Mallaby says that unlike coal-fired power stations such as Tarong, pictured, wind and solar energy plants aren't so dependent on water.

Coal and water

HERE’S another energy issue for the Nationals to consider.

Tarong power station, the largest in south-west Queensland, reduced generation by 25 per cent in January, 2007, to save water, and further reduced it by 45 per cent in March, 2007, for the same reason.

Now, once again, farmers surrounding Tarong are facing the loss of their irrigation water, as dam levels reach a point where remaining supply will be reserved for Tarong.

It was estimated the 2007 reductions saved 22,000 megalitres of water over 15 months, which I am sure the surrounding farmers appreciated.

But surely, as climate change brings increasingly severe droughts, replacing coal-fired stations in areas prone to water shortage, like Tarong, by a combination of wind and solar energy would make more sense.

They use virtually no water, so there would be a more reliable electricity supply with no long periods of large generation reductions, and much more water for agriculture.

And they now produce cheaper power.

- Richard Mallaby, Wangi Wangi

‘Horror’ at proposal

I RECENTLY returned to the Lake Macquarie area from Sydney. I envisaged a tranquil time overlooking a clean quiet lake that affords easy access to all.

To my horror I find that Lake Macquarie council is proposing to lodge a development application to allow themselves to be the developer of a multi-storey residential building on the foreshore at Toronto.

Please let us maintain our unique quality of a quiet area less than two hours from Sydney.

The Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast is easily accessible by plane.

Let’s leave the buzz, the bling and the infrastructure issues for the Queenslanders.

- Robin Bastian, Marmong Point

Still ‘forgotten north’

RESIDENTS in the former Wyong Shire Council area pay, on average, 19 per cent more in rates than residents in the old Gosford City Council area.

This is because Wyong Council made hard decisions prior to the amalgamation that saw substantial rate rises in our area.

The extra money collected was to provide the services our ratepayers wanted and needed. 

Central Coast Council can collect our rates but, it seems, it all goes straight into consolidated revenue and they can’t (or won’t) separate the funds into the old council boundary areas.

So, what is the result?

Surprise, surprise, the ‘forgotten north’ has clearly been overlooked to the tune of millions again. 

We, Mannering Park Progress, have been working towards a connected shared pathway for over 35 years.

The pathway would connect six communities around Lake Macquarie and allow young people to get to their local schools, the beach, the proposed new skate park at Lake Munmorah, and casual work, without the need for parents to use their cars.

The shared pathway had been costed and was ready for the next stage when the councils amalgamated. Where is it in priorities now?

Our request is that our rate money is spent in our area and our shared pathway, for one, is completed.

When, and if, the Gosford City Council residents catch up to our rate pay scales, then we can combine our monies.

- Kelvin Wynn, Mannering Park Progress president

Trouble at Rathmines

IT appears that it is still open slather for hoons in cars and on bikes in the Rathmines area. We are not down on police, as we have a son who is a senior constable policing in a country town, but we would like to see some response in our area to these activities.

- Name and address withheld