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Electricity Savings Positive, But More Needed

New Zealanders have done well to achieve electricity savings of almost seven percent but must not let up in their efforts to cut power use, says Energy Minister Pete Hodgson.

"Recent rain in the South Island is welcome but it increases hydro storage by a little less than a day's worth of electricity consumption," Mr Hodgson said. "The risk of a supply crisis in coming weeks has not lessened significantly and it remains very important to pursue the target of 10 percent savings nationwide."

Mr Hodgson called a week ago for savings in electricity consumption of ten percent for ten weeks to avert a supply crisis. Savings have risen over the week and reached 6.8 percent yesterday.

"National hydro storage was down to 57 percent of average yesterday. We are still looking down the barrel of a supply crisis if lake inflows stay low and we do not save power. It will take more than a few days of rain to turn this situation around."

Mr Hodgson is due to meet electricity industry and consumer representatives again on Monday at 1.30pm to discuss progress in addressing the supply situation and related issues.

For statistics on electricity consumption and hydro storage see www.m-co.co.nz

Ends

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