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EMA Northern misleading public over climate change

Monday, 03 December 2001 Media Statement

EMA Northern misleading public over climate change

Energy Minister Pete Hodgson said today he was disappointed that EMA Northern was misleading New Zealanders about the government’s position on climate change and the possible consequences of climate change policy.

In a media statement issued today EMA Northern chief executive Alasdair Thompson claims that Mr Hodgson “has said electricity will go up seven percent and petrol up 11 percent”.

“This is a gross misrepresentation of my comments at a business meeting on climate change in Auckland last month,” Mr Hodgson said.

“I informed that audience of the findings of various studies that attempt to model the economic impacts of ratification of the Kyoto Protocol. For Mr Thompson to quote figures from one of the studies I mentioned and represent them as my official estimate of the costs of ratification is at best confused and at worst dishonest.

“As I have said before in response to Mr Thompson, it is plain silly to say that the Kyoto Protocol will put up energy costs by a certain amount because economic modelling tells us so,” Mr Hodgson said. “Economic modelling has significant limitations and it is misleading to cite the results without recognising those limitations.

“To claim that every New Zealand household will pay $1000 a year for ratification of the protocol is to strain the findings of NZIER’s recent modelling well beyond breaking point. This study modelled some extreme policy scenarios and showed that bad policy would produce high costs. That is why we are moving carefully to develop climate change policy that minimises the costs and maximises the benefits of ratification.”

ENDS

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