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Powerful action taken on climate change

Moana Mackey Member of Parliament

22 March 2005

Powerful action taken on climate change

Eastland Network Limited's proposed Mokairau wind farm near Gisborne is the first to be awarded emission units under the second round of the government's Projects to Reduce Emissions programme.

"The benefits this project is set to deliver are a direct consequence of New Zealand's decision to be part of global efforts to tackle climate change through the Kyoto Protocol," says Gisborne based List MP, Moana Mackey.

"Reducing emissions of greenhouse gases helps preserve the environment for future generations of New Zealanders, while in the short term local communities will benefit from having a more secure electricity supply."

New Zealand was recently named the most attractive country for this sort of business-friendly Kyoto initiative by Point Carbon. International interest in emissions trading is growing with both the Dutch and Austrian governments looking to enter trading arrangements with Kiwi firms for units awarded under the Programme.

The 80,000 internationally tradable emission units awarded to the project could net Eastland $1.2 million if sold at the prevailing international price of around $15.

“The business is delighted with the successful outcome of our tender,” says Matt Todd, CEO, Eastland Infrastructure Limited, management provider for Eastland Network. “The units will assist greatly in the realisation of this important project. We believe its development will benefit our electricity consumers, as well as enhancing our long term strategic commitment to the region’s environment, economic growth and community”.

"I'd like to congratulate Eastland Network for having the foresight to see the environmental and economic benefits taking action on climate change can deliver under Kyoto," says Moana Mackey.


Notes

Under the Programme companies and individual can be awarded units for projects that will lead to a net reduction in emissions of greenhouse gases against business as usual that would otherwise not be economically viable. To date, 10 million units have been put out for tender under the Programme.

An emission unit equates to one tonne of carbon dioxide or its equivalent in other greenhouse gases. Units are effectively tradable allowances for greenhouse gas emissions. Each country with targets under the Kyoto Protocol, which entered into force on 16 February 2005, must hold sufficient emission units to match its emissions during the first commitment period of the Protocol that runs between 2008 and 2012.

Eastland Network Limited, electricity network owner and operator for the Gisborne and Wairoa regions.

Located 30kms north-east of Gisborne, the Mokairau Wind Farm is forecast to generate around 27gigawatt hours of electricity per annum. On a daily basis it could provide up to a quarter of the Gisborne region's current peak load electricity requirements and is likely to meet 12.5 per cent of current total consumption in the Wairoa and Gisborne districts.

ENDS


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