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Draft Energy Strategy 'Riddled With Holes'

Draft Energy Strategy 'Riddled With Holes'

The Government's draft energy strategy released yesterday for consultation has been criticised by WWF-New Zealand as being 'riddled with holes and dangerously biased towards mineral extraction'.

"The Government's draft energy strategy clearly prioritises unsustainable fossil fuel extraction over policies to drive down greenhouse gas emission or stimulate alternative technologies," said Peter Hardstaff, WWF-New Zealand Climate Change Campaigner.

Although the Government's draft strategy proposes to reaffirm the target that 90 per cent of electricity generation will be from renewable energy sources by 2025, it fails to come up with a convincing strategy for how this will be achieved. Similarly, the government envisions a long term future where transport emissions have halved, but presents no strategy to achieve this target.

"It is riddled with holes. There is significant depth and detail on plans for fossil fuel extraction, and a gaping chasm between the long-term future for alternative energy that the strategy describes, and the strategies and actions the government intends to follow in order to get there," said WWF's Peter Hardstaff.

"When it comes to developing new energy sources, the government says it "will not pick winners" and will wait to see what happens when oil prices rise. When it comes to existing energy sources, the government is happy to 'pick winners' and provide the support the oil and coal industry demands," he said.

"The Government's task is to provide New Zealanders with an energy strategy to secure access to safe, renewable energy as prices of oil rise, and to bring down greenhouse gas emissions. In its current form, it fails to deliver," he said. "We encourage New Zealanders to make submissions to the Government to call for a comprehensive energy strategy that encourages alternative energy and reduces greenhouse gas emissions."

Feedback on the draft strategies closes at 5.00pm on Thursday, 2 September 2010

The draft strategies and information on the submissions process is available at www.med.govt.nz/energystrategy

ENDS

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