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


Electricity Commission appointed

Electricity Commission appointed

Energy Minister Pete Hodgson today announced the membership of the new Electricity Commission, due to start work this week.

The new Commission will supervise New Zealand's electricity industry. Its primary tasks will include electricity market governance, such as overseeing the operation of the electricity market and ensuring efficient transmission investment. It will also be responsible for ensuring New Zealand's electricity supply is secure, even in very dry years, through measures including contracting for reserve generation.

Roy Hemmingway, from Oregon, USA will chair the Commission.

"Mr Hemmingway brings to the Commission extensive experience in the regulatory management of electricity and other private utilities," Mr Hodgson said. "His most recent position was chairperson of the Oregon Public Utility Commission, with a staff of 120. His achievements included the development of policy for a competitive electricity market and the establishment of agencies to encourage energy efficiency and renewable resource investments."

Mr Hemmingway has also worked as an energy consultant to a range of commercial and public sector clients. He has a law degree from Yale University and has lectured at the Northwestern College of Law.

"The position of chairman was advertised in New Zealand and overseas and I am very pleased we have succeeded in securing someone of such high calibre," Mr Hodgson said.

In addition to the chairperson there will be five Commission members.

David Close is a former Christchurch City Councillor and, until recently, a director of the national grid company Transpower. He has a sound knowledge of the electricity industry and extensive experience as a local body politician and as a board member of commercial, voluntary, Maori and charitable organisations.

Douglas Dell trained as an engineer and has worked in the electricity industry throughout his career. His electricity industry experience includes pricing, infrastructure development, marketing and operational management in both public and private sectors. He is currently an energy consultant, based in Auckland, and was formerly a director of the lines company Vector.

Peter Harris is a former Council of Trade Unions economist with an extensive background in research, analysis and advocacy. Mr Harris has been a member of a number of government and academic boards, and has been involved in national and international trade issues. His most recent appointment was as economic advisor to Finance Minister Michael Cullen.

Graham Pinnell is a professional engineer and a farmer. He has a strong understanding of electricity industry governance, having been a consumer nominee on a number of electricity industry bodies.He has been a National Board member of Federated Farmers, and has had close involvement in a number of agribusiness’s and public policy issues.

Christine Southey has until recently been a director and partner in a consulting firm specialising in the energy sector. She has a comprehensive knowledge of the regulatory and contractual arrangements governing the sector, acquired through her involvement in a number of key industry projects. Before her consulting role Ms Southey was a partner in a national law firm, where her practice focused on the energy sector and competition law.

"The composition of the board provides an excellent balance of skills and experience," Mr Hodgson said. "The members of the Commission will bring to their work industry knowledge, understanding of consumer needs and environmental issues, knowledge of government processes and experience of governance in the energy sector and the wider community.

"The Government's overall objective for the electricity industry is to have power delivered in an efficient, fair, reliable and environmentally sustainable manner to all consumers. I am confident this Commission will provide the effective leadership needed to help us achieve that. On consumer protection issues I expect the Commission to work closely with consumer groups."

Also released today is a revised draft Government Policy Statement on Electricity Governance. The statement sets out key improvements to the electricity industry that the Government expects the Commission to oversee, in addition to its routine governance responsibilities.

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>


Wellington: Predator Free Capital Plan

Wellington City Council (WCC), the Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC) and NEXT Foundation, today announced a joint collaboration to make Wellington the first Predator Free capital city in the world. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Judith Collins’ Efforts At Self Correction

Thousands of prisoners currently in prison may be entitled to an earlier release than expected – and compensation – because Corrections has incorrectly calculated their term of imprisonment. Unless of course, the government buries its mistakes by changing the law and retro-actively getting itself off the hook… More>>


More Justice & Corrections

Sector Opposes Bill: Local Government Bill Timeframe Extended

The Minister of Local Government Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga has asked the Select Committee to extend the report back date for the Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill (No 2). More>>


Breed Laws Don’t Work: Vets On New National Dog Control Plan

It is pleasing therefore to see Louise Upston Associate Minister for Local Government calling for a comprehensive solution... However, relying on breed specific laws to manage dog aggression will not work. More>>


Not Waiting On Select Committee: Green Party Releases Medically-Assisted Dying Policy

“Adults with a terminal illness should have the right to choose a medically assisted death,” Green Party health spokesperson Kevin Hague said. “The Green Party does not support extending assisted dying to people who aren't terminally ill because we can’t be confident that this won't further marginalise the lives of people with disabilities." More>>


General Election Review: Changes To Electoral Act Introduced

More effective systems in polling places and earlier counting of advanced votes are on their way through proposed changes to our electoral laws, Justice Minister Amy Adams says. More>>

Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news