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Nats would scrap $1 billion household energy fund

14 October 2008

Nats would scrap $1 billion household energy fund

Nick Smith's reluctant admission that National would scrap the one billion dollar household energy efficiency fund if it got into government is another example of National's short-sighted thinking, Energy and Climate Change Minister David Parker said today.

"This is the same sort of short term thinking which has been rightly criticised following National’s announcements that they will also abandon the Research and Development tax credit and drastically cut support for KiwiSaver, both important investments in our future," David Parker said.

Nick Smith was forced to admit National would abandon the billion dollar fund during an Oxfam debate on climate change in Auckland last night.

"The billion dollar fund is the biggest boost to energy efficiency this country has ever seen," David Parker said.

"The fund will help make New Zealanders' homes warmer and drier through insulation and clean heating devices, and the benefits are huge: lower power bills, better health outcomes, cosier homes, and a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.

"It's an investment that makes our households more resilient to rising energy prices, and it's a significant part of the country's efforts to combat climate change. National's failure to support it is false economy that will disadvantage those on low and middle incomes the most.

"This fund is hugely popular because Kiwis are keen to reduce their power bills by investing in energy efficiency. Labour is committed to supporting New Zealanders, and Labour is serious about climate change. Voters now know that National can't be trusted on either of those things."

ENDS

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