Rural Australia believes in self-sufficiency, so let’s set the terms of the renewable energy boom

(The Guardian, 12 Feb 2024) The consultation and planning around the energy rollout has been lacking – so let’s knock the edges off and get investment that works for our communities.

recently discovered the chest freezer in our shearer’s huts had blown up in a lightning strike. The power had been out for two weeks. It felt like a CSI plot: I’m the woman with the torch, pushing the creaky shed door open to find a cloud of blowflies hovering around a bad smell.

The little bastards had found a tiny breach in the freezer seal. I did my best rendition of Brad Pitt in Se7en – What’s in the box? When I opened the lid, even the maggots had gone to fly heaven. The vestiges of splendid homegrown lamb were a grey mush at the bottom of the freezer.

While I donned rubber gloves and started cleaning, a hotchpotch of protesters were gathering outside parliament house with a cocktail of complaints about renewable energy developments, transmission lines, the United Nations, paedophiles and the World Economic Forum.

The combination of this protest and my own rotten mess underlined the intersection of power – electrical and political – in rural Australia.

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The Guardian, 12 Feb 2024: Rural Australia believes in self-sufficiency, so let’s set the terms of the renewable energy boom