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Green Party launches clean energy proposals

Green Party launches clean energy proposals
The Green Party has launched a set of proposals that will make it easier for families to reap the benefits of solar panels and other small scale renewable distributed generation.
The plan will help families to reduce the cost of their power bills while receiving a fair price for any surplus energy that they generate.
Today at the Solar Energy Association of New Zealand (SEANZ) conference, Green Party energy spokesperson Gareth Hughes released a draft bill for comment and feedback that would legislate for the proposal.
The proposal involves three main changes in statute for the Electricity Authority:
·        An amended objective: “to promote greater use of renewable energy including from distributed generation sources”,

·        An amended function: “to establish and administer a fair regime for small scale renewable distributed electricity generation power purchase agreements” and

·        An entirely new section 43 in the Electricity Industry Act detailing how this will be achieved. Including 10 year power purchase agreements and a price set by the Electricity Authority.

“The Green Party wants to make it easy for families to generate their own power and to receive payment for it,” said Green Party energy spokesperson Gareth Hughes.
“At the moment there are no directives or incentives for power companies to purchase surplus power off small scale generators. We would make this a priority in legislation for the Electricity Authority.
“Our proposal would require the Electricity Authority to set up a fair and simple power purchase agreement with those who want to feed in surplus electricity that they generate.
“Our proposal means cheaper power bills for families that generate their own power and the ability to earn income from selling surplus energy back into the grid.
“I am proposing to empower the Electricity Authority to update the Electricity Code to set up and administer a fair regime for small scale renewable generators.
“We will make is easy for people to sell their surplus electricity, from solar panels for example, on their roof.
“Other counties like Germany have more proactive programmes to increase distributed generation, Australia and states in the USA also incentivise people generating their own power.
“Many states encourage solar power through similar feed-in-tariff systems but this proposal doesn’t seek public subsidies or increase the costs of electricity for other consumers. I just want to reduce regulatory barriers and make it easy for people to generate their own power.
“This proposal is aimed at reducing some of the regulatory barriers for small scale distributed solutions, ensuring that there are standards and safety measures in place.
“New Zealand is not currently on track to meet our 90 per cent by 2025 renewable target. The most recent IPCC report reiterates the need for us to do more to meet our fair share of reducing emissions.
“The future of electricity generation is not more destructive dams, or dirty coal plants. It is creative energy solutions like solar panels on the roof of your house.
“Sustainable Energy has always been a priority for the Green Party and we will be doing more work in this space before the 2014 election,” said Mr Hughes.
For more information: Powering a clean energy future proposal


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