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


Report pulls Government up on Gas

Report pulls Government up on Gas


Embargoed until Wednesday 26 March 2008, 4pm.

New Zealanders’ energy bills could jump by over 50%, and they could face power shortages, as a result of the Government’s current energy policy.

That’s according to a new report released today on behalf on the Petroleum Exploration and Production Association (PEPANZ) by the Centre for Advanced Engineering (CAE). The report analyses the effects of the Government’s renewable energy targets in the electricity sector on New Zealand’s gas industry.

PEPANZ executive officer, John Pfahlert, says the Government’s aim of achieving 90% renewable energy by 2025 will have a huge impact on the electricity and gas systems.

“These policies risk exposing the New Zealand public to rising energy costs, increased uncertainty and an inconsistent electricity supply to homes and businesses around the country,” Mr Pfahlert says.

The report indicates electricity costs will rise by at least 15%. However, Mr Pfahlert believes the real costs could be much higher.

“Possible increases could be 40 to 50% within 15 to 20 years.”

The CAE report predicts current Government policy will have massive impacts on the gas industry - including a decrease in gas availability and potential price increases.  The report argues existing policy will discourage exploration for gas, leading to significant gas shortages.

Under current energy policy, New Zealanders will rely on renewable energy as their main source for generating electricity. However, due to the intermittent nature of renewable energy, a supply of thermal fuels will be essential as a generation back-up.

When gas prices rise as a consequence of reduced exploration and production, a potentially cheaper substitute would be a coal-fired generation, which has far higher carbon emissions.

“Using coal instead of gas would defeat the Government’s environmental objectives altogether,” Mr Pfahlert says.

“The likely result of the current policy will be the closure of one of New Zealand’s three existing combined cycle gas turbine power plants – not only a loss of jobs, but the loss of a much needed back-up supply.

“The gas sector is a significant and proven contributor to New Zealand’s economic base and is often overlooked. Current Government energy policy seems likely to reduce the size of the New Zealand gas market, increase energy prices and ultimately reduce energy security,” Mr Pfahlert says.

“This could mean bad news for the energy markets and, more importantly, bad news for consumers.”




© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On National’s Incredible Disappearing Tax Policy

During the years of the Key government one hardy perennial of political journalism was that whenever the Labour Opposition would suggest a policy alternative to the status quo, the hard bitten response from the Gallery realists would be “But how’re you gonna pay for it?” National in Opposition has been almost entirely spared that level of sceptical scrutiny. Until now, that is. Until now, Christopher Luxon had largely been left free to witter on that it is entirely feasible to (a) repay debt faster (b) cut taxes significantly and (c) maintain, or even increase the current levels of spending on health and education and (d) do all that at once...


National: Five Years Of Failure For Light Rail
Construction of light rail in Auckland might not begin until 2025 despite tomorrow marking five years since Jacinda Ardern announced it would be delivered to Mt Roskill by 2021, National’s Transport spokesperson Simeon Brown says... More>>

Government: Representation Bill Passes Third Reading In Parliament
Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu welcomes the passing of new legislation tonight to reinstate Ngāi Tahu councillors to Environment Canterbury... More>>

Government: First Ever Climate Adaptation Plan Lays Foundations For Resilient Communities

New Zealand’s first National Adaptation Plan, launched today, will ensure communities have the information and support they need to prepare for the impacts of climate change... More>>

Government: More Women On Public Boards Than Ever Before

“Women’s representation on public sector boards and committees is now 52.5 percent, the highest ever level... More>>

Te Pāti Māori: Debbie Ngarewa-Packer Calls On PM To Support Bill To Ban Seabed Mining

Te Pāti Māori Co-leader, Ngāti Ruanui and Ngā Rauru uri Debbie Ngarewa-Packer is today celebrating that her Prohibition on Seabed Mining Legislation Amendment Bill has been drawn from Parliament’s biscuit tin... More>>

Housing: Building Consents Surpass 50k Again
New Zealand’s strong pipeline of housing construction is continuing with the annual number of new homes consented surpassing 50,000 for the fourth month in a row... More>>




InfoPages News Channels