Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


First Green Party Bill in the House today

Jeanette Fitzsimons' Energy Efficiency and Conservation Bill is expected to pass its most crucial stage in the House today, on its way to becoming the first Green Party bill to pass into law in New Zealand.

Amendments put to Parliament today will bring the bill closer to Ms Fitzsimons' intentions when she first introduced the member's bill in 1998, before a rough ride through select committee under a hostile National Government watered it down substantially.

"After prolonged negotiations with the new government, my bill will be amended to set up a stand-alone authority, the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority, responsible for implementing a national strategy and targets for energy efficiency and renewable sources of energy," said Ms Fitzsimons.

Ms Fitzsimons said the creation of EECA as a stand-alone authority responsible to a Minister was central to making the bill work. Since the EECA's establishment in 1993, it has struggled under a series of funding cuts, a prolonged and inconclusive governance review, and an unenthusiastic Minister.

"Without any kind of legislative foundation, EECA has been at the whim of governments which have blown hot and cold on energy efficiency since 1992. Statutory independence will restore mana to EECA, and allow the authority to do its job better," she said.

"The Authority needs to work closely with business, and it will have a governing board which includes business people. It will have a central role in our efforts to combat climate change and reduce other environmental pollutants, and will have a policy relationship with the Ministry for the Environment. It will have a social role in upgrading cold and damp houses which contribute directly to flu, TB, arthritis and to New Zealand's high rate of child asthma."

Under the bill, EECA will be required to advise and educate; collect and publish information; administer grants and loans; develop energy efficiency standards for appliances, buildings and vehicles; and monitor our progress towards energy efficiency.

The bill also requires a National Strategy on energy efficiency to be developed.

"This is intended to be a real grass roots process," said Ms Fitzsimons. "I hope businesses, communities, local and national organisations and individuals will contribute to designing a strategy that involves them in recapturing the third of our energy we now waste so as to build a better economy, a better environment, more jobs and a healthier society."

Jeanette will be available for media briefings in her office, Bowen 14:14 between 1pm and 1.30pm today.

Jeanette Fitzsimons MP: 04 470 6661 or 025 586 068 Gina Dempster, Press secretary: 04 470 6723 or 021 1265 289

Four important things Jeanette's bill does:

1. Is the first piece of legislation passed by New Zealand to address climate change, and brings us up to general OECD standards. 2. Gives the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority permanent status and functions after years of uncertainty and funding cuts.

3. Stipulates that New Zealand's first real national energy saving plan be set up, and provides a major role in this for local communities, businesses and sector groups.

4. Provides authority, for the first time, to protect consumers against wasteful household appliances, vehicles and buildings by setting energy efficiency standards.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

New Reports: Flood Risk From Rain And Sea Under Climate Change

One report looks at what would happen when rivers are flooded by heavy rain and storms, while the other examines flooding exposure in coastal and harbour areas and how that might change with sea-level rise.

Their findings show that across the country almost 700,000 people and 411,516 buildings worth $135 billion are presently exposed to river flooding in the event of extreme weather events...

There is near certainty that the sea will rise 20-30 cm by 2040. By the end of the century, depending on whether global greenhouse gas emissions are reduced, it could rise by between 0.5 to 1.1 m, which could add an additional 116,000 people exposed to extreme coastal storm flooding. More>>



Gordon Campbell: On The Commerce Commission Fuel Report

The interim Commerce Commission report on the fuel industry will do nothing to endear the major oil companies to the New Zealand public... More>>


Emergency Govt Bill: Overriding Local Licensing For The Rugby

“It’s pretty clear some clubs are having difficulty persuading their district licensing committees to grant a special licence to extend their hours for this obviously special event, and so it makes sense for Parliament to allow clubs to meet a community desire." More>>


Leaving Contract Early: KiwiBuild Programme Losing Another Top Boss

Ms O'Sullivan began a six-month contract as head of KiwiBuild Commercial in February, but the Housing Ministry has confirmed she has resigned and will depart a month early to take up a new job. More>>


Proposed National Policy Statement: Helping Our Cities Grow Up And Out

“We need a new approach to planning that allows our cities to grow up, especially in city centres and around transport connections. We also have to allow cities to expand in a way that protects our special heritage areas, the natural environment and highly productive land." More>>


Ombudsman's Report: Ngāpuhi Elder 'Shocked' By Conditions At Ngawha Prison

A prominent Ngāpuhi elder is shocked to find inmates at Ngawha Prison are denied water and forced to relieve themselves in the exercise yard... Chief Ombudsman Peter Boshier has released a report highly critical of conditions at the Northland prison. More>>


Promises: Independent Election Policy Costing Unit A Step Closer

The creation of an entity to provide political parties with independent and non-partisan policy costings is a step closer today, according to Finance Minister Grant Robertson and Associate Finance Minister James Shaw. More>>


School's In: Primary And Intermediate Principals Accept New Offer

Primary and intermediate school principals have voted to accept a new settlement from the Ministry of Education, which includes entrenched pay parity with secondary principals. More>>


IPCA On 'Rawshark' Investigation: Multiple Police Failings In Hager Searches Confirmed

The Independent Police Conduct Authority has found that the Police's unlawful search of Nicky Hager's property in October 2014 resulted from an unwitting neglect of duty and did not amount to misconduct by any individual officer... More>>


Broadcasting Standards: Decisions On Coverage Of Mosque Attacks

The Authority upheld one of these complaints, finding that the use of extensive excerpts from the alleged attacker’s livestream video on Sky News New Zealand had the potential to cause significant distress to audiences in New Zealand, and particularly to the family and friends of victims, and the wider Muslim community. More>>




InfoPages News Channels