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Labour’s Energy Policy – A step forward

14th September 2005

Labour’s Energy Policy – A step forward

Wednesday 14th September: Greenpeace today welcomed the Labour Party’s energy policy as being a step forward in addressing climate change and towards a sustainable energy future, though criticised it for failing in key areas such as stopping coal-fired power stations.

“A commitment to increasing the proportion of electricity from clean renewable energy sources like wind and to develop a National Energy Strategy, is great news for reducing greenhouse gas emissions and tackling the biggest threat the planet faces – climate change,” said Greenpeace climate campaigner, Vanessa Atkinson.

According to the Labour Party energy policy released yesterday, they have committed to /‘Develop a long-term road map (National Energy Strategy), exploring a wide range of potential scenarios and creating plans for transition towards a substantially renewable energy powered electricity system.’/

“For three years, Greenpeace has been calling for a long term sustainable energy strategy for New Zealand to help stop dangerous climate change and it is encouraging that Labour has taken up the challenge, at least partially. However we are disappointed that they have fallen short of the vital step to stop new fossil fuel developments like coal or gas and to phase out existing plants.”

Unfortunately Labour has made no commitment to stop Mighty River Power’s Marsden B project, which would be the first major coal-fired power station in New Zealand for over 25 years.

“It is also encouraging to see policies to improve energy efficiency and conservation – a key part of a sustainable electricity system. New Zealand has one of the lowest energy efficiency levels of any country in the OECD so there are enormous gains to be made which will have a dual climate change and money saving benefit.” concluded Atkinson.

ENDS

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