Some Lovely Nuns Bought Solar Panels For Kirribilli House But Tony Abbott Turned Them Down Like A Jerk
Do not insult the nuns, Tony.
If a nun went to the trouble of getting you a gift, you wouldn’t turn it down, would you? Of course you wouldn’t — nuns are lovely, and they have the ability to curse those who wrong them with plagues of poisonous asps. It’s standard nun-knowledge, like how some nuns can fly high and fast enough to rival modern jet fighters.
So when a group of nuns and reverends with the Christian activist group Common Grace raised enough money to put solar panels on the roof of Kirribilli House, the Prime Minister’s Sydney residence, they probably figured Tony Abbott would thank them nicely and get to work installing them on an off-day. But the government has turned down the gift, with a letter from the Department of Finance saying the panels could not be accepted on grounds of Kirribilli’s heritage listing and the cost of keeping them clean.
Problem is, neither of those reasons are particularly good. Solar panels were installed on the White House by President Jimmy Carter back in 1979 and even Pope Benedict XVI put a bunch on Vatican buildings, which have slightly more heritage cred than bloody Kirribilli House. Closer to home, over 5,500 solar panels have been installed on Council-owned buildings in Sydney by Lord Mayor Clover Moore. The real reason probably has more to do with the government’s well-known antipathy to renewable energy, which saw renewables investment collapse by around 70 percent in the year after the government took office.
Undeterred, Common Grace delivered the panels to Abbott’s electorate office in Manly this morning, along with more than 800 signatures on an open letter calling on the government to be less terrible on this whole solar-power thing. It was possibly the politest protest action there has ever been.
Moral of the story: don’t mess with nuns, Tony. Do not displease the nuns.