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New Zealand Remains In Top 10 For Energy Balance

The World Energy Council’s Energy Trilemma Index has become part of the energy dialogue both globally and in New Zealand. The Index illustrates the need for countries to balance energy security, energy equity and environmental sustainability.

New Zealand has one of the world’s leading energy systems when it comes to sustainability, security and affordability. It is the only country that has had a triple A grade in all three areas since 2000.

This year, New Zealand remains in the top 10, ranking 10th out of 128 countries assessed. Despite declining energy security, New Zealand continues to rank highly thanks to growing environmental sustainability and stable energy equity.

A lower energy security rating was driven by a reliance on energy imports and relatively lower oil and gas storage when compared to other countries. This is a useful reminder of the need for balanced policies to achieve a successful energy transition.

New Zealand remains in a strong position in terms of striking a balance between energy equity, sustainability, and security.

BusinessNZ Energy Council Chair Hon David Caygill says the growing score on the sustainability dimension and the declining score under energy security shows the interconnectivity of the index dimensions.

"This year’s result is driven by a growing proportion of generation from renewables. While this is a positive outcome, careful investment in the resilience of our electricity system is required.

"We must be wary of 'betting the house' on a given technology. Robust trialing, piloting, and clear policy frameworks will assist appropriate technology development.

"Early next year, along with EECA, we will release an updated set of our energy scenario results. These will help those interested to consider how New Zealand’s energy performance and our trilemma performance may develop over time."

A summary of the three pillars:

Environmental Sustainability - New Zealand shows a stable growth in sustainability performance. This is largely driven by a growing proportion of electricity generation from renewables and decreasing total carbon emissions.

Energy Security - a reduction in energy security is primarily driven by a growing dependence on energy imports and a decline in primary energy supply diversity. This emerged as a risk in our BEC2060 energy scenarios.

Energy Equity - a measure of access (including ‘modern’ energy access) and affordability of energy, is slightly improving.

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