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Greens welcome bright idea on electricity

Greens welcome bright idea on electricity

The Green Party welcomes the Government announcement today that it is starting work on a state-run Electricity Governance Board.

Green Co-Leader Jeanette Fitzsimons said she was pleased with Energy Minister Pete Hodgson's announcement that Cabinet has directed the Ministry for Economic Development to begin work on a Crown Electricity Governance Board.

Mr Hodgson said the industry-run governance board now seemed improbable, though not impossible, and accordingly would be given till mid-May.

Ms Fitzsimons said the Green Party had always doubted that competing interests in the electricity industry would be able to sort it out among themselves in a way that took account of the public interest.

"We now have the opportunity to set up rules for electricity supply that actually assist and encourage new renewables and demand-side participation in the market (in other words, demand reduction measures being considered on the same basis as increased supply)," Ms Fitzsimons said

"Any electricity solution that doesn't focus on helping people reduce their demand is going to be unsustainable.

"We also have to make sure the small, local generators like wind can enter the market on a fair basis and a level playing field, and that includes matters like transmission pricing," Ms Fitzsimons said.

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