Home' Scoop : Scoop 50 Summer 2009 Contents 20 SCOOP SUMMER 2009
I AM A Kiwi and a food and wine lover.
Since leaving New Zealand for Australia four
years ago, I have missed my lazy afternoons with
Cuisine magazine. Many hours disappeared under
a comfy blanket, with a recommended wine,
planning my diary dates to explore the local com-
munity, thinking about booking in to the latest
restaurant find and reading about amazing people
that invest time and energy into "our place".
I have felt so much nostalgia for those after-
noons that I tried to recreate them here, even re-
sorting to a Cuisine subscription. But the afternoon
doesn't go as well when the place isn't yours; the
people aren't close by and the restaurants not
reachable. This afternoon I discovered Scoop.
My diary is full, I'm anticipating dinner tonight
at Bouchard and I feel a new vigour for discovering
Western Australia. I have lived here for six months
and it is through your magazine that I am develop-
ing a pride for the place and the people.
Maybe I will eventually feel it is my new place.
I don't think I'll be missing my Cuisine afternoons
Congratulations on celebrating this place in
such a proselytising way.
~ Mya Cubitt (by email)
I'VE JUST READ the current edition of Scoop and
wanted to thank you for looking to "go political".
As a qualified experienced futurist, I have been
constantly frustrated over the past seven years at the
lack of vision for our state and its capital.
I have repeatedly offered my services and
national and international connections -- we are
helping other countries do this important work! --
yet Australia and WA in particular seems to want to
lag behind other countries.
Media seems to want to publish opinions of
the rich and famous (ill-informed or narrowly
constructed) about the future they envisage and as
these are people unskilled and inexperienced in fu-
tures thinking the result is often more of the same.
I seek not to criticise these people -- merely to point
out that Australia has some of the world's leading
futures analysts and facilitators -- let's use them for
their knowledge and skills in this specialised area!
~ Anita Kelleher, Inglewood.
CONGRATULATIONS on your gutsy editorial in the
last edition of Scoop.
You are right on the money with regard to the
growth of the nanny state in WA. The bureau-
cratic machinery of our state is slowly subverting
our so-called democracy.
It doesn't matter who is in power, the un-elected
bureaucratic machine grinds down all significant
The one area that I think you could have elabo-
rated on further was your discussion on licenses. In
WA you need to have a licence to:
• Grow potatoes
• Catch crayfsh
• Paint over $200 worth of work
• Build over $20,000 worth of structures.
In my business we build outdoor structures like
pergolas, gazebos and alfresco areas, but we have to
decline work over $20k because we are not a regis-
tered builder. This is despite the fact that we employ
two university-educated engineers and we are not
"building" per se (ie. no concrete slabs, plumbing,
electicals, tiling etc). To become a registered builder
we have to fulfil all the licence requirements such
that we could then build a skyscraper on St Georges
Terrace! It is ridiculous.
Or when we sell a timber fence, technically we're
breaking the law if we offer to paint it -- as we don't
employ a registered painter. This is a job that my
grandma could do.
The only point I disagree with in your article is
where you seem to suggest that a Bill of Rights may
protect us from all of this.
The problem with a Bill of Rights is that if is not
perfectly crafted, it can actually be an impediment
to democracy and prevent the government from
legitimately reflecting the societal standards the
public want. It can be used to prevent the imple-
mentation of quite sensible legislative agendas. It
is a good idea, so long as it can surgically protect
As once written, legions of lawyers will pour
over the exact wording of the document for decades
as they work to conjure ways of defending clients...
that perhaps should face the long arm of the law.
Keep up the good work,
~ Steven Smart , North Perth
I READ YOUR article on the possibility of intro-
ducing nuclear power into WA. Please note, before
I continue, that I believe in impacting as minimally
as possible on the environment.
There are a few facts, of which you need to be
Nuclear power stations need to be large capacity
in order to make them efficient and somewhat eco-
nomical (ie to compete with fossil fuels). Thus these
machines are of the order of 1 to 2 GW capacity.
Note WA's generating capacity at the moment is
of the order of 2GW. There is only ONE genera-
tor per nuclear power station, not like fossil fuelled
power stations where there maybe several units.
Thus when there are technical difficulties or main-
tenance is required, the nuclear power plant is taken
off the grid.
Therefore, there needs to be sufficient backup to
make up the difference. In WA's case, using present
figures, this could be as much as 50 percent.
Thus additional smaller conventional power sta-
tions need to be kept in mothballs and in working
order to make up the difference.
Regarding maintenance of nuclear power plants
(which can occur every five to 10 years depend-
ing on design, reliability etc), the maintenance
period can take up to 18 months. This is due to the
complexity of the plant and safety concerns with
equipment that has been exposed to radiation.
For a large power consumption area, such as the
east coast which is on a grid (NSW, Vic, SA), losing
1 to 2GW of capacity out of say 25GW or so is
no big deal (less than 10 percent), but WA with its
small power consumption and huge area of need,
will NEVER need a nuclear power plant in the next
50 or so years.
It seems that the people you interviewed did not
bring this to your attention.
The future of power generation in WA will move
towards gas-fired units, which generate 60 percent
less emissions than the coal-fired units.
Also the use of renewable energy such as wind,
solar and tidal will become more prevalent.
Reduction in power consumption per capita due
to more energy efficient homes, less use of power
etc, residential solar generation, will lead to less
need for larger units.
~ David Karr (by email)
We welcome your feedback and contributions.
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