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Electricity Crisis x 2 – Rescue – G8 – Germ Warfare – Miracle Water – Grape Mould – I Am Dunedin

ELECTRICITY CRISIS: The calls are growing for the government to intervene in the electricity market. The Comalco smelter is NZ’s biggest electricity user, it has cut its usage by 5% to avoid having to buy on the spot market. For half an hour yesterday electricity sold for $3 a unit on the spot market compared to the winter average of 25 cents. On Energy has now sold all its customers to state generation companies. Trustpower says that it too may soon have to quit the market. National wants the Government to reveal exactly what profits are being made by the state owned generators. Tomorrow there will be a high level meeting about the problems.

ELECTRICITY CRISIS: Nine years ago the country was in the grip of an electricity crisis. That provided the will to reform the industry. But all the will in the world cannot make it rain. The two main hydro storage lakes are Pukaki and Tekapo. At the moment there is more water in them than there was back in 1992. AUGIE AUER: We are still clinging to a weak La Nina climate pattern, so no big rains can be expected. Through October I think we can expect around 65% of normal rain. Big snowfalls will be a help, but not till spring melt.

RESCUE: Three Kiwi yachties are about to be rescued by the Australian Navy off Chesterfield Reef well off the Queensland coast.

G8: Sam Buchanan the NZer arrested in Genoa has been released by Italian police.

GERM WARFARE: Today a world treaty on germ warfare was given the Bush treatment, rejection. In six months the Bush government has refused to accede to six international treaties and conventions. The US has rejected a small weapons sales ban, the Kyoto Accord and the International Criminal Court too.

MIRACLE WATER: The Queensland fair trading organisation is investigating an Auckland guru who sells small bottles of “miracle” water for a fortune. “Infinity forms of yellow remember” water sells for $80 a bottle. And for $75 you can get a consultation on what type of water suits you best.

GRAPE MOULD: Scientists from HortResearch have found a way to stop a damaging mould that settles on grapes.

I AM DUNEDIN: Dunedin has joined the growing ranks of NZ cities that needs a slogan. Dunedin’s slogan is “I am Dunedin”. A marketing expert says that its slogan is a non slogan, “we have a brand that is so good its stands on its own.” Nevertheless the slogan still cost $125,000.

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