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

 


Govt Encouraged Solid Energy Expansion

26 February 2013

Govt Encouraged Solid Energy’s Expansion But Never Required A Business Case

The National Government encouraged Solid Energy expansion plans but never required it to submit a business case for its ambitious but ultimately futile $2 billion lignite developments, the Green Party said today.

Information released under the Official Information Act confirms that Solid Energy never provided a business case for the proposed multi-billion dollar lignite expansion to Treasury or the shareholding ministers.

“The National Government failed to provide adequate oversight of the ambitious expansion plans of the state’s coal miner,” said Green Party Co-leader Dr Russel Norman.

“The shareholding ministers and Treasury’s Crown Ownership Monitoring Unit are responsible for providing this oversight but they manifestly failed.

“But more than that, John Key was actively encouraging the expansion of Solid Energy’s lignite plans.”

John Key said to an Invercargill audience on 3 June, 2011 that, ‘At the moment companies like Solid Energy are growth companies and we want them to expand in areas like lignite conversion’.

“It is desperate stuff to now blame Solid Energy’s failings on a speech from Trevor Mallard in 2007,” said Dr Norman.

“Like South Canterbury Finance before it, the National Government’s complacency has cost taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars.

“National is failing at the basics of good economic management and oversight.”

Dr Norman also questioned the Government’s attempt to paint Solid Energy’s demise as a failure of its clean energy investments.

“The majority of Solid Energy’s asset write-downs (or impairments) were dominated by its investments in underground mines, as reported by Solid Energy’s CEO when presenting the 2012 Annual Report,” said Dr Norman.

“The closure of the Huntly and Spring Creek mines as a result of falling coal prices and the high New Zealand dollar have had a disproportionately bigger negative impact on Solid Energy’s bottom line than its investments in clean energy.

“In fact, the National Government’s decision to end the Biodiesel Grant then remove minimum biofuel requirements destroyed the business case for Solid Energy’s prior investment in biodiesel.”

Link to Treasury’s Official Information Act response:

http://www.greens.org.nz/sites/default/files/treasury_oia_on_lignite_oversight_0.jpg

Link to John Key’s reported statements on Solid Energy’s expansion plans:
http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/5094448/PM-backs-mining-souths-lignite



ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Novopayout: Government-Owned Company To Take Over School Payroll

After lengthy negotiations, the Ministry of Education and the existing school payroll provider, Talent2, have settled both on the amounts payable by Talent2 towards the costs of remediating the Novopay service and a new operating model for the school payroll system.

The new model involves a new government-owned company taking over the operation of the payroll service, and Talent2 licensing the core Alesco software to that company.

The settlement provides for Talent2 to pay the Ministry between $18 million and $22 million, made up of $7 million in cash and other considerations including a license for the Alesco software and discounted fees for the support and maintenance of this software. More>>

 

Parliament Today:

Werewolf Issue #49: Gordon Campbell Interviews Laila Harre

For 25 years, Labour and National have been in virtual agreement about the basics of economic policy, and differed mainly on how to go about managing its social consequences. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On National’s Electorate Deals

For all the talk yesterday from Prime Minister John Key about National being transparent about its electorate deals in Epsom and Ohariu, that transparency is entirely front-loaded. More>>

ALSO:

Greens: Oil Drilling Face-Off With Labour

The key policy points in the Green Party’s plan to protect our beaches from oil spills are to:
1. Prohibit deep sea oil drilling; 2. Implement compulsory shipping lanes for coastal shipping; 3. Build Maritime New Zealand’s oil spill response capability; and 4. Introduce a stronger legal framework so that when accidents do happen, the New Zealand taxpayer does not have to pay for the clean-up. More>>

ALSO:


Nick Smith v Fish & Game:

Minister Told Of FBI Investigation, Says INZ: Coleman Must Quit Or Be Sacked Over Dotcom Case - Harré

Immigration New Zealand has done the right thing in distancing itself from Jonathan Coleman’s claims that ministers were not aware of FBI involvement in Kim Dotcom’s residency application, says the Internet Party. More>>

ALSO:

Valedictory Season: Maori Party Founders Say Goodbye

Two major Maori MPs gave there farewell speeches to Parliament Thursday outlining their history, experiences, triumphs and regrets. More>>

ALSO:

Resignation Not Accepted: Transport Minister Breaches Aviation Security Rules

"Running late for a plane at Christchurch Airport, I without thought breached airport and airline security rules by entering the gate lounge through a door usually used for exit only..." More>>

ALSO:

TAIC Report: Urgent Recommendations After Melling Rail Accident

The Transport Accident Investigation Commission has made four urgent recommendations to KiwiRail following the accident two months ago (27 May) when a Matangi passenger train collided with a stop block at Melling Station, Lower Hutt. More>>

ALSO:

Red Tape: Local Regulations Go Under Microscope

The Government says it is accepting nearly all of the recommendations the Productivity Commission has made on ways to improve local regulations. More>>

ALSO:

Spending Questions: Claudette Hauiti To Step Aside At Election

National Party President Peter Goodfellow confirms that he has received notification from List MP Claudette Hauiti that she plans to step aside at the 20 September election. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
Parliament
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news