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Need for Cross Party Commission on Peak Oil

Maori Party Repeats call for Cross Party Commission on Peak Oil

Hone Harawira, Climate Change Spokesperson for the Maori Party

Thursday 6 December 2007

The Maori Party has today reiterated the call it made on 4 September 2005 to establish a cross-party parliamentary commission on peak oil.

“Right at this moment in London an All Party Parliamentary Group on Peak Oil and Gas and the All Party Parliamentary Climate Change Group are meeting to focus on the interaction between oil depletion and climate change and whether a combined solution can be developed” said Hone Harawira, Climate Change Spokesperson for the Maori Party.

“Just prior to the 2005 elections, we issued a challenge to all parties that we work together to address the issues around oil shortages” said Harawira.

“Our intention then – as it is now – is to reduce this country’s reliance on non-renewable energy sources - and to make that a priority issue for this Parliament” said Harawira.

“It appears the Brits have picked up on this great idea – and are now looking at cross-party solutions to address what they are describing as the ‘twin crises’ of peak oil and climate change” said Harawira.

“Listening to world experts such as Professor Richard Heinberg, the Maori Party understands that the Peak Oil period is here now; and given that a ten year planning phase is needed to strategise how to meet the challenges of Peak Oil - New Zealand is already ten years behind the eight ball" said Harawira.

"The government is being incredibly short sighted by continuing with their position of Peak Oil hitting in 2030. It's an immediate crisis that needs to be dealt with urgently or we all suffer the consequences - and given our huge reliance on oil and petrol, the consequences will be huge".

“There's a whole lot we can do - making a couple of phone calls before the hui to organise one carload going instead of three; building power walking into our means of travel and putting pressure on your council to increase public transport options; pumping up the tyres on the bike; replacing the petrol guzzling machine with the lean, mean model – or even doing our homework and reading up on renewable energy sources (hydro, solar, wind, geothermal, waves) as substitutes for oil-gas in transport and industry” said Harawira.

“I know that a lot of the marae up North are investing in the environmental future of Aotearoa and looking at ways to create alternative sources of energy” said Harawira.

“We have to be calling on our brightest minds to look at ways that to encourage community transformation and political co-operation, as we come to grips with the challenge of depleting petroleum resources” said Harawira.

“I came across a statement from Torsten Slock, an economist at Deutsche Bank which seemed to sum up the big three issues facing us here – “there are three sharks stalking the economy, the oil shark, the credit shark and the housing shark’”.

Background

The All Party Parliamentary Group on Peak Oil and Gas (APPGOPO) and the All Party Parliamentary Climate Change Group(APPCCG) are meeting in the Grand Committee Room, House of Commons, London on Wednesday 5th December; 7.00-8.30pm

ENDS

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