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Officials confirm ending exploration a lose-lose

Officials confirm ending exploration a lose-lose for environment, economy

The Government’s own experts have confirmed that ending offshore oil and gas exploration will be a lose-lose for the economy and environment, according to material released under the Official Information Act today.

The Petroleum Exploration and Production Association of New Zealand (PEPANZ) says it is time for a re-think and wants to work with the Government on a better way of achieving their goals.

"The decision is already costing jobs in Taranaki and will have a major impact on the economy," says PEPANZ CEO Cameron Madgwick.

"MBIE warns that gas prices to consumers will increase with any tightness in future supply, and at the same time it is unlikely to lower our emissions. In fact, it’s likely to mean higher global emissions as we turn to coal and more expensive imported fuel instead.

"The advice particularly highlights the impact if our biggest industrial users of natural gas were to reduce production here in New Zealand. Production would most likely shift to China with coal as the fuel source instead, resulting in three or four times the emissions.

"Around 400,000 homes and businesses rely on natural gas, but the future outlook for this important energy source is now very uncertain.

"As an industry we share the Government’s goals of lowering our emissions and sustainably growing the economy, but it’s becoming evident a ban on exploration is not the right tool to achieve this.

"We want to help and be a part of the solution. We support the ETS, offsetting through afforestation, and carbon capture and storage technology as just some of the much better tools available to help reduce net emissions."
ENDS

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