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Draft New Zealand Energy Strategy

Media Release
11 December 2006


Draft New Zealand Energy Strategy

The new vehicle industry welcomed today’s release of the draft New Zealand Energy Strategy 2050.

Mr Kerr said that “from reading the strategy there is now a clear understanding by Ministers and officials that we have a unique vehicle fleet and that this needs to be taken into account when developing any initiatives.” Using the example of biofuels Mr Kerr said “that Japan like New Zealand has had only limited experience with bioethanol and biodiesel and we must therefore ensure that the fuels sold in New Zealand are compatible with the vehicles in the fleet, but we must also look to the future and seriously question the continued importation of tens of thousands of very old used Japanese imports which cannot use these fuels.” Mr Kerr said that “this was in complete contrast to New Zealand new vehicles where today 95% of all new petrol models sold are suitable for an E10 (10% bioethanol) and 99% of all vehicles E5 (5% bioethanol) limits.”

“As to the other initiatives” Mr Kerr said “that the Association and members would be more than happy to work with the Government on consideration of new technologies.” Mr Kerr however cautioned against the Government trying to pick winners in the vehicle technology area. Internationally car companies are spending billions of dollars on research on improving vehicle fuel efficiency and the use of alternative fuels and we don’t know where this will lead and therefore don’t want to lock ourselves into an area that at the end of the day may go no where. Mr Kerr went onto say “that we need to ensure that the policies are such that we are in a position to pick up on the new technologies sooner rather than later.”

Mr Kerr concluded by saying “that not only were there direct environmental benefits from ensuring that we were importing the very latest models but there were also significant safety improvements – so it’s a win-win situation.”

ENDS

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