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


Nuclear power definitely not an option: Greens

11 August 2008

Nuclear power definitely not an option: Greens

Green Party Co-Leader Jeanette Fitzsimons describes Matthew Hooten as 'indulging in some wishful thinking' in the Sunday Star Times this week.

"For the record, I have never been interviewed by Matthew Hooten about nuclear power and I have never said to anyone - in public or in private, whether after a glass of wine or not - that nuclear power might ever need to be part of New Zealand's energy mix.

"What I have said repeatedly in many forums is that nuclear power does not fit New Zealand's electricity system and would be hugely expensive here.

Even aside from the real issues of waste disposal (still not solved); uranium mining (environmentally very damaging and hazardous to worker health); and the obvious links with weapon technology, uranium is a limited resource just like oil and will become scarce just a few decades later, Ms Fitzsimons says.

"Nuclear power stations come in very large sizes that would be too big for New Zealand's power system. We don't have the ability to back up that large a station, so when it was taken offline for a fault it would cause power cuts. Nuclear would make our system less secure and reliable, not more.

"Nuclear stations need a large amount of expensive technology back-up - radiation monitoring, training, armoured transport vehicles for fuel and wastes, armed guards on the power station 24/7 - all of which is very expensive just to support one power plant. I can't imagine New Zealanders accepting the high power bills that would result, nor can I imagine any community in New Zealand accepting a waste dump near them. Nor should they.

"New Zealand is particularly well endowed with renewable sources of electricity: Geothermal, wind, solar, eventually (and quite soon) wave and tidal. Our real problem is transport fuels and I can't see trucks and trains running on nuclear.

"This issue was resolved for New Zealand years ago. There are no new facts that justify reviving it."


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On DHB Deficits And Free Trade

Currently the world is looking on aghast at the Trump administration’s plans to slash Obamacare, mainly in order to finance massive tax changes that will deliver most of their gains to the wealthy. Lives will be lost in the trade-off. Millions of Americans stand to lose access to the healthcare they need.

Spot the difference with New Zealand, where DHBs are under intense pressure to reduce deficits within a climate of chronic underfunding. More>>


Greens' Response: Slum-Like Rentals Exposed In Renting Review

“...The grim findings of the review are a wakeup call about the true state of rentals in this country. Too many renters are festering in slum-like conditions under the thumb of landlords who have largely unchecked powers and ignore tenants’ complaints when it suits them.” More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The Life And Times Of Peter Dunne

The unkind might talk of sinking ships, others could be more reminded of a loaded revolver left on the desk by his Cabinet colleagues as they closed the door behind them, now that the polls in Ohariu had confirmed he was no longer of much use to National. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Labour’s Campaign Launch

One of the key motifs of Ardern’s speech was her repeated use of the phrase – “Now, what?” Cleverly, that looks like being Labour’s response to National’s ‘steady as it goes’ warning against not putting the economic ‘gains’ at risk. More>>


Lyndon Hood: Social Welfare, Explained

Speaking as someone who has seen better times and nowadays mostly operates by being really annoying and humiliating to deal with, I have some fellow feeling with the current system, so I’ll take this chance to set a few things straight.. More>>


Deregistered: Independent Board Decision On Family First

The Board considers that Family First has a purpose to promote its own particular views about marriage and the traditional family that cannot be determined to be for the public benefit in a way previously accepted as charitable... More>>


Transport Policies: Nats' New $10.5bn Roads Of National Significance

National is committing to the next generation of Roads of National Significance, National Party Transport Spokesperson Simon Bridges says. More>>





Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election