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Strategy can't hide Labour's poor record on energy

John Key MP
National Party Leader

11 December 2006

Strategy can't hide Labour's poor record on energy

National Party Leader John Key says the Government's draft energy strategy, released today, would have more credibility if Labour's "track record hadn't been a catalogue of embarrassing failures".

Mr Key says those failures include, Labour's bungled costing of the Kyoto protocol, its bitter feud with the Electricity Commission, a lack of energy security and New Zealand's growing reliance on thermal generation.

"And that's before we come to the grim reality of net deforestation, and greenhouse gas emissions growing at faster rates than the US and Australia."

Mr Key says that despite the Prime Minister's much hyped promise of carbon neutrality, the phrase carbon neutrality is barely mentioned in the document.

"All the officials knew that Helen Clark's promise on carbon neutrality was pie in the sky stuff designed to hide her Government's embarrassing track record. So now they're trying desperately not to talk about it. What's now clear, is that Labour is giving away the modest targets set under the Kyoto protocol." Mr Key says energy generators have been given no security about their future, because Labour keeps kicking decisions on its climate change policies to touch.

"This is a wish list of vague ideas, that have yet to be fully considered and costed. It's an underwhelming strategy that only says Labour is finally thinking about some kind of strategy.

"Labour needs to try much harder if it wants to provide New Zealanders with the security they expect when they flick the switch.

"Labour's had seven long years to get its energy strategy on track. It's a sector that has been plagued by trouble in recent years, yet all Labour has come up with is another strategy that's rich in rhetoric and short on real action."

ENDS

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