Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


CANA Cheering: Southland Coal Will Be Left in The Hole


Coal Action Network Cheering At News That Southland Coal Will Be Left In The Hole

For immediate release

22 February 2013—The Coal Action Network Aotearoa is celebrating the end of the nonsensical lignite project plans in Southland, after Solid Energy Chairman Mark Ford confirmed on national radio this morning that the company will drop the project.

When asked on radio about the lignite projects, Mr Ford said: “I think that is part of the non-core assets that we will be exiting from.”

“This was a ridiculous project from the outset: dirty, low-grade coal being turned into a product nobody wanted, digging up prime Southland farmland for coal that would simply end up in the sky, adding to the looming climate crisis,” said Kristin Gillies, CANA spokesperson.

“The people of Southland, just as the people of the West Coast and Huntly, have been sold broken promises by an industry that will do nothing for our economic future. Coal is a sunset industry and we need to wake up to this reality.”

Co-spokesperson for Coal Action Murihiku, Dave Kennedy, said there would be a huge sigh of relief from the growing local opposition to the project, which had so far only produced six local jobs, and would be taking the region in the wrong direction.

“Southland has so much to offer a green future for New Zealand, and we’re very happy that the coal here will be left where it belongs – in the hole, and the fertile soil can continue to be productive for generations to come.”

It is also highly doubtful that the briquetting plant in Mataura will be able to be sold: it has suffered a number of problems, has yet to be commissioned, and there is no market for the briquettes.

CANA also pointed out today that it was wrong for people to put Solid Energy’s financial woes down to its investments in renewable projects.

Renewable investments were tiny compared to the other things that lost Solid money. P45 of the 2012 annual report discusses "impairments" (the reduction in capital value of parts of the business - similar to a write down?)

- Biodiesel resulted in an impairment of $9m;
- Natures Flame $24.5m, Switch $1.6m.
- total renewable impairment $36m.

Meanwhile:
- Spring Creek resulted in an impairment of $64.3m,
- Huntly coal seam gas $18.5m,
- Huntly East $33.5m,
- they wasted $29m on the Southland lignite briquetting plant that may never work and may never have markets, though this is not marked as impaired in the accounts.

Even without the lignite projects (and the Annual Report notes impairment and loss from the whole Iignite project) total coal impairment is ~$116m, 3.5 x that of the renewable losses.
“To blame renewable energy for Solid’s woes simply doesn’t stand up,” said Gillies.
Solid bought 49% of the shares in Spring Creek as recently as Feb 2012, closed it temporarily to upgrade the mine, then closed it permanently later in the year. They spent a capital outlay of $64m - and they never got any coal out of it.

The failure of the renewable energy plants can be laid at the door of the govt. The investments were made under the Labour govt when there was a biofuel obligation coming on all motor fuel sales; this was then replaced by National's subsidy, then that was cancelled.

Coal and gas would have been more expensive under the 2008 ETS and there would have been a better market for pellets. The company also made the mistake of going for the export market for pellets when they could have developed a good market in NZ.

CANA on Twitter
We are on Twitter, and we encourage you to follow us there and retweet our tweets (thanks to everyone who has been doing so!): https://twitter.com/#!/coalaction

CANA on Facebook
Join our main facebook group
Already a member? Please advertise it on your newsfeed and invite friends to join – and if you're not, go there and sign up!
"Like" our Leave the Lignite, Save the Soil page
Say No To Fracking in NZ Facebook group:

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

'Tea Break Bill' Passes: Gordon Campbell On Bad Labour Laws And Poor Safety

By co-incidence, one of the prime dangers of the government’s new employment relations law has been underlined by the release of the death and injury statistics among workers at New Zealand ports. These are highly profitable enterprises for the port owners.

The Port of Tauranga for instance, is expecting its current full-year profit to be between $78 million and $83 million and other ports are enjoying similar boom times – but they are also highly dangerous places for the people who work on or around the port premises. At the Port of Tauranga, there have been 26 serious accidents since 2011, and two deaths. More>>

 

Parliament Today:

No Charges: Outcome Of Operation Clover Investigation

Police have completed a multi-agency investigation, Operation Clover, into the activities of a group calling themselves “The Roast Busters”. The 12 month enquiry focused on incidents involving allegations of sexual offending against a number of girls in the Waitemata Police district and wider Auckland area... More>>

ALSO:

UNICEF Report: NZ Cautioned On "Stagnating" Child Poverty

An international report by UNICEF has found that child poverty rates in New Zealand have barely changed since 2008, despite similar sized countries significantly reducing child poverty during the recent recession. More>>

ALSO:

Funding Report: Two Pathways For Transport In Auckland

Commissioned by Auckland Council, the group was asked to investigate two possible pathways for raising $300 million per year ($12 billion over 30 years) to pay for the improvements needed to help fix Auckland’s transport system. More>>

ALSO:

Pay Equity: Equal Pay Win In Court Of Appeal

CTU: The Court of Appeal has made a historic decision paving the way for a substantial equal pay claim for aged care workers. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The TPP Finishing Line, And Amazon’s Woes

If the Trans Pacific Partnership trade deal wasn’t such a serious matter, this would be pretty funny… More>>

ALSO:

TV3 Video: Three Die On Roads Over Labour Weekend

The official holiday period ended at 6am Tuesday, with three deaths on the roads during the Labour Day weekend. More>>

Employment Relations Bill: Govt Strains To Get Tea Break Law Through

The Government has been left with egg on its face - failing to get its much-vaunted, but hugely unpopular, meal break law passed in the first week of its new term, Labour spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says. More>>

ALSO:

Guns: Police Association Call To Arm Police Full Time

"The new minister gave his view, that Police do not need to be armed, while standing on the forecourt of parliament. The dark irony was that the interview followed immediately after breaking news of a gunman running amok in the Canadian parliament in Ottawa..." More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news