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Your views: on bikeway failure, hydrogen hub, ramping, mental health, CFS and Fringe

Reader contributions

Today, readers comment on Adelaide City Council rejecting its own bikeway plan and millions of dollars, Labor’s hydrogen hub plan, WCH ramping, youth counselling, firefighting resources and a review.

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Commenting on the story: What we know today, Wednesday March 24

The council’s rejection of the east-west bikeway just shows they are totally uninterested in making Adelaide carbon neutral – they are so worried about getting rid of car parking spaces.

What a joke they are. – John Boland

Commenting on the story: Location, location? Labor coy on detail but insists hydrogen plan ready to roll

I am all for clean energy and renewable power, but I am not sure that the “Hydrogen Power Station” part of this proposal makes sense.

We often have excess solar or wind generated power, which presently forces our grid price negative. Once we find a use for this, it will stabilise at a low positive price. It comes down to efficiency and cost.

We can use electricity to generate hydrogen gas at 70-80% efficiency, less if we have to compress it for transport.

Using that hydrogen to generate power is only 40-50% efficient, so using power-hydrogen-power conversion for our extra peak power gets us back only ~35% (one third) of our original excess power.

Our Big Battery returns 80-90% efficiency, but is very expensive to enlarge for bulk day-to-day storage. It is excellent for fast response and grid stability.

Pumped hydro storage can return 80-90% efficiency at lower cost and ability to scale larger. There are multiple proposals to do this, many using disused mines (big holes in the ground) or seawater in hills near the coast.

It is better to use pumped hydro for time-of-day power grid balancing, and keep the electrolysed hydrogen for higher value purposes like export, chemical feedstock and fossil-fuel replacement in industry.

Both, not either-or! – David Leske

Commenting on the story: Children being ramped at WCH – doctor

No amount of whitewashing and sanitisation cash hide the parlous state of our hospitals, particularly the emergency services.

Ramping is becoming more widespread and common due to patient flow and bed blockage problems in our public hospitals.

The morale of the clinical staff is at an all time low, and there are critical shortages in nurses and doctors.

Far from repairing the damaging legacy of Transforming Health, this Government has presided over a further deterioration in health services. At least part of this is due to an entrenched and powerful SA Health bureaucracy which is more concerned with structure and process than with patient care.

It is unfortunate that the Minister hides behind this facade and the hospital boards, and abrogates his direct and unavoidable responsibility for the health and wellbeing of his constituents. – Professor Warren Jones, Convenor WCH Alliance

Yet another injustice inflicted upon the women and children of this state following closely upon the WCH blackout (Hough & Crouch March 21st), both of which draw attention yet again to the recurring neglect of the WCH which is being sacrificed on the altar of a new $2 billion WCH being built sometime after 2026 on an inadequate site without the meaningful input of senior clinicians and without the capacity to become a world class centre of excellence one would expect for such a cost.

To keep disingenuously trotting out the same “$50 million upgrade at the WCH”, which was spent long ago on outside consultancies and sparing changes to the theatres, ED, neonatal nursery and mental health does nothing to assist the critical needs of children with cancer, the pressing staffing issues and the blatant disregard of surgical equipment, infrastructure and bed needs which still exist at the hospital and have required urgent attention for a considerable time.

With both these critical incidents must we wait for an “adverse outcome” , as we had only six months ago with the deaths of four babies, while our political masters choose to ignore the exhortations from loyal and dedicated paramedics, doctors, nurses and midwives while they contemplate spending $750 million on an inadequate new city stadium? – 
Assoc Professor John Svigos

Commenting on the opinion piece: A place to take the pressure off

Ironically SA used to have a number of what is being described in Second Story (south) and Shopfront Youth Health (north), closed in the pivot away from primary health and wellbeing under the McColl report. – Rick Henke

Commenting on the story: CFS lacked resources to deal with KI fire

Unfortunately, the findings from every review and enquiry for many decades have found the same or similar deficiencies within the CFS (and their counterparts interstate). Maybe its time there was a major independent enquiry into the operations and culture of the organisation.

CFS Management has always reject directions and advice coming from outside its own ranks and sometimes even from inside. The former director Mr Lloyd Johns was removed for his advocacy of aerial firefighting. The Government (not just in South Australia) has always relied on their expert advice coming from the CFS and has not given much credence to outside advice. Maybe this needs to change.

The CFS originally opposed the use of large road water tankers until the 1980 Ash Wednesday fires proved them wrong. The new design of fire truck built by the Stirling Council in the mid-80s for Stirling CFS was rejected by CFS headquarters (but praised by the volunteers) and funding was refused. This truck was the forerunner of the modern vehicles currently used by the CFS.

CFS headquarters vehemently opposed the use of aerial firefighting until it was forced upon them. Now they oppose the use of large built for purpose aircraft such as the CL415, to the point of disseminating factually incorrect information against them. The use of the CL415 in the Cudlee Creek fire would have meant that that fire would have been bought under control considerably faster, freeing up resources for Kangaroo Island. One of these aircraft would have arrived at Flinders Chase well before the aircraft we do use, and operated from the islands airport not having to return to the mainland until the fire was under control.

“CFS chief officer Mark Jones agreed with the report’s finding that his agency lacked the resources to deal with the incident, but said the disaster could have been much worse.” With the proper use of the right aircraft the disaster could have been considerably lessened. – Adrian Dormer

Commenting on the Fringe review: Tracy Crisp – Pearls

Absolutely agree with Rachel’s review. It was a stunning performance.

Perhaps I had an insider’s view, having lived in Port Pirie for a time. The Black Box theatre in the rose garden was a wonderful location for this production, too. – Alison Whish

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