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Gas space and water heating could shortages

Please find attached a media release from the Gas Association

Thanks,
Freya
Freya Barnes | Four Winds Communications | www.fwc.co.nz

MEDIA RELEASE

28 February 2008

Gas space and water heating could avert power shortages

With hydro storage lakes in the South Island fast approaching record lows more use of gas for household space and water heating could markedly reduce the threat of recurring power shortages.

Energy commentators are already speculating about the risks of electricity shortages this year.

Gas Association chairman, Stephen Nicholls, says studies by BRANZ show more use of gas for household space and water heating could shave 56% off current winter household electricity loads, and 51% from average household summer demand[1].

"New Zealand faces the growing risk this year of a third electricity shortage since 2001.

"The costs to the economy of an acute electricity shortage will be huge and could be very easily averted if we used gas instead of electricity to power household space and water heating appliances.

"Not only would this have a very positive impact on our energy security, but it also more environmentally friendly and energy efficient than using our valuable gas resources to generate electricity.”

New Zealand has plenty of natural gas for direct use in the residential and commercial sectors.

"New Zealand's gas resources are a crucial strategic energy asset. We should focus much more of using gas directly, rather than using it just to generate electricity."

ENDS

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