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Government turns on to Green power strategy

Government turns on to Green power strategy

The Green Party is delighted the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority is acting on suggestions from Greens Co-Leader Jeanette Fitzsimons, made during the last dry winter (see releases 1 and 2 below), to develop a comprehensive power-saving strategy at a time when New Zealand is facing another power crisis.

Responding to a question in parliament toady from Ms Fitzsimons, the Minister of Energy Pete Hodgson revealed that the EECA has been acting on her proposal and today delivered their draft to the Minister.

"This is not about freezing in the dark or about slashing production," said Ms Fitzsimons, who called for a sensible strategy to avoid future power crisis nearly two years ago. "It is about doing sensible things that make each unit of energy go further.

"We congratulate the Government for adopting a sensible stance in accordance with the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Act, and not listening to the wayward posturing of the short-sighted opposition.

"National's Gerry Brownlee can amend the RMA until the cows come home but that won't put more gas in Maui and it won't make the rain fall."

Ms Fitzsimons said the Resource Management Act, which National have blamed repeatedly for the failings of the electricity industry, is not responsible for the fact New Zealand's fossil energy resources have a limited life-span.

"If people want to keep power prices low, that is achieved through conservation - not building more power stations."

The 'Intervention Scenario' draft plan suggests savings of more than 10 per cent are possible after six months, the equivalent of making a new thermal power station available for winter.

The plan calls for three stages of savings scenarios: Avoid Waste; 'Mild' Conservation; and Slash Use.

"It is essential for the plan to include a public education campaign so that everyone knows how to implement the necessary savings when advised by the Government," said Ms Fitzsimons.

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