The Informer: Electric dreams with an ocean view

It will be years until we have the variety of electric vehicles - and utes in particular, which Australians particularly want. Picture: Shutterstock
It will be years until we have the variety of electric vehicles - and utes in particular, which Australians particularly want. Picture: Shutterstock

At a time when the two best selling vehicles in Australia are both twin-cab diesel 4WD utes, new research shows $492 billion could be saved if we are to move completely to clean-energy electric cars by 2035 and use public buses more frequently.

No surprises: the Deloittes research was commissioned by the Australian Conservation Foundation.

And therein lies the conflict between market dynamics and dewy-eyed aspirations.

COVID has had people masked up and steering away from public transport and new car sales have been decimated by not just the lockdown effect, but a worldwide shortage of semi-conductors. The wait list for popular models stretches for months.

It will be years until we have the variety of electric vehicles - and utes in particular, which Australians particularly want - with the driving range and buyer attraction which will move the needle out of today's single digit sales penetration of total fleet sales.

And remember, there are no longer any cars produced domestically so there's not even the chance of incentivising or strong-arming a local car industry to do the heavy lifting.

The federal government killed off that manufacturing capability - Toyota was the last to go in 2017 - by denying the carmakers any subsidies. So Australia now has to sit in the queue and wait for decisions made elsewhere in the world. It could be a very long wait.

But if we can't get the cars we want, at least we can acquire the real estate.

But we'll need deep pockets.

Everyone wants an ocean view and Gerroa's Headland Drive is proving a huge attraction to cashed-up buyers moving to the regions.

Since January, the South Coast street has recorded 12 transactions bringing in a recorded $31.1 millionin sales, with its most recent sale lobbing in at $7.1 million.

Gerroa's median house price - $2,625,000 at most recent calculations - has reached a point where the suburb now regularly battles it out with illustrious, sun-kissed Byron Bay for the most expensive regional market in the country.

Further south, a sprawling 3.2-acre property in North Batemans Bay with a "resort-like" ambience has hit the market with an asking price of $2.5 million to $2.75 million.

Beyond the house, a detached yurt makes for a creative studio space, hobby room or what is currently a "man cave".

Next to the yurt, an unused water tank has been converted into a wine cellar with room for a few hundred wine bottles. Cheers to South Coast life!

Meanwhile, as COVID restrictions ease around the country and thoughts turn to getting kids off the couch and back to school, it could be assumed that the educators in our community would be providing a level of thought leadership on easing that transition.

Not so in the Hunter Valley, where the local Christian School teacher has labelled COVID-19 vaccines as "completely ineffective" and "completely unsafe for human use", in a lengthy email sent from his work account to his students and their families.

The math teacher's rant, sent on the weekend before the October 4 start of term, said he and his family would not be getting vaccinated and that the response to the pandemic was "ritual subservience to the new priests of fear".

As one of his colleagues said: "As teachers we are meant to promote critical thinking skills and these are not in evidence at all in his rant".

As the Hunter-New England area made up around a quarter of COVID-19 cases detected in NSW late this week, it was a jarring note at a time when the community could least afford it.

But he's not out on a limb.

The ACT's government's mandate on vaccination for early childhood and primary school staff flushed out the principal of Charnwood-Dunlop School who was told he would not be returning to work after he appeared in a video alongside Senator Malcolm Roberts speaking of his opposition to the vaccine mandate.

As the ACT's Education Minister ducked for cover, parents were left scratching their heads. Prepare for some rocky weeks ahead, readers.

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This story Electric dreams with an ocean view first appeared on The Canberra Times.