Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


"Reality check" needed on oil use

"Reality check" needed on oil use

Finance Minister Michael Cullen's "reality check" on the economy should include a "reality check" on oil use, Green Party Co-Leader Jeanette Fitzsimons says.

"Dr Cullen has called for a reality check on an economy he says has 'come off the boil' at a time Statistics New Zealand is announcing an annual trade deficit of $7,102 million - the highest on record," Ms Fitzsimons says. "His reality check should look more closely at reasons for the deficit; and long-term effects.

"Imports of merchandise goods are up $3004 million and of that nearly half is petrol and petroleum products at $1217 million. These kinds of figures will get worse with a lower New Zealand dollar - our high dollar insulates us from extremely high petrol prices."

The high cost of oil and its contribution to New Zealand's deficit is not a temporary phenomenon, Ms Fitzsimons says.

"It makes sense, as most experts predict petrol prices to rise long term, to have an urgent official reality check on our dependence on oil. We need to boost public transport rather than build motorways, import cars which do more kilometres to the litre and drastically improve our efforts to become self sufficient in energy with alternative energy sources.

"The world is close to maximum oil production - called 'peak oil' - and is unlikely to be able to expand supply to meet growing demand from China and India. At present our cars, jobs, food supply and even our health services all rely heavily on oil. We can't continue as we are without a real `reality check'," Ms Fitzsimons says.

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Whether We Should Be Betting Quite So Heavily On Astra Zeneca’s Covid Vaccine

According to this week’s Speech from the Throne, maintaining public safety during the pandemic will remain the government’s top priority. Next year will (hopefully) bring the rolling out of a free vaccination against Covid-19 to New Zealander. Currently, there are three possible vaccine contenders but the effectiveness of the vaccine will be only one of the factors determining which vaccine will pre-dominate. On the basis of the cost per dose, and the ease of manufacture, storage and distribution, the Astra Zeneca/Oxford University vaccine will almost certainly be the prime choice for New Zealand, at least initially... More>>


New Zealand Government: Speech From The Throne

It is my privilege to exercise the prerogative of Her Majesty the Queen and open the 53rd Parliament.
In the October election, New Zealanders elected a majority Government for the first time under our Mixed Member Proportional electoral system... More>>

Grant Robertson: Government To Review Housing Settings

New Zealand’s stronger-than-expected economic performance has flowed through to housing demand, so the Government will review housing settings to improve access to the market, the Finance Minister Grant Robertson announced today. “Our focus More>>


Law Commission: Recommends New DNA Laws For Criminal Investigations

Te Aka Matua o te Ture | Law Commission today released a report that recommends a new, comprehensive regime to control how DNA is obtained, used and retained for criminal investigations. The report has revealed significant gaps in the operation ... More>>


New Zealand Government: To Declare A Climate Emergency

The Government will declare a climate emergency next week, Climate Change Minister James Shaw said today. “We are in the midst of a climate crisis that will impact on nearly every aspect of our lives and the type of planet our children will inherit ... More>>


Economy: Crown Accounts Reflect Govt’s Careful Economic Management

The better-than-expected Crown accounts released today show the Government’s careful management of the COVID-19 health crisis was the right approach to support the economy. As expected, the Crown accounts for the year to June 2020 show the operating balance ... More>>


Green Party: Announce Portfolio Reshuffle With Talented And Energised Caucus Team

“The Green Party caucus offers a breadth of talent and energy to the Parliament this term. In ten MPs you have a small business owner, a human rights lawyer, an academic, a climate negotiator, a transport planner, and so much more”, Green Party ... More>>





InfoPages News Channels