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Green Party Energy Plan Will Damage NZ Economy

In putting together Clean Energy Plan, Green Party would do well to consider this observation – ‘I know exactly what to do, I just don’t know how to get re-elected once I’ve done it!’ according to New Zealand’s minerals sector industry organisation, Straterra.

“The Green’s 9-point Clean Energy Plan, pays scant respect to the current state of the Covid-19 battered economy, available data, existing jobs and what is required for our businesses to remain internationally competitive,” said Straterra CEO Chris Baker.

“The proposal to prematurely end fossil fuel use will damage New Zealand’s international competitiveness without achieving their aims of emissions reductions.

“We should acknowledge a harsh reality here – New Zealand can and should do our share, but whatever emissions reductions we achieve will make no material impact on global emissions.

“The Greens ‘Plan’ provides no supporting analysis. Studies by the Productivity Commission and Interim Climate Change Committee conclude that 100% renewable electricity generation would be costly and result in higher emissions. Do the Greens have other studies that challenge these findings?

“Our dairy sector is currently lifting a very heavy load for the post-Covid-19 economy. The sector must be allowed to transition away from coal as technology, prices, the ETS and international competition allow. Under the Green’s plan, jobs and competitiveness take a back seat to reducing emissions, regardless of what other countries are doing. That is not what our economy needs ever, let alone now.

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“Business needs coherent policy supported by evidence and pragmatism. The Greens are offering to interfere and second guess business to achieve a . . . wish list.

“The low carbon economy is a clear goal that we all support – but banning coal use from industrial processes and electricity generation will simply cost jobs for no commensurate environmental benefit. This is ideology versus reality.

“Right now, tomato growers and other businesses that use coal for industrial heat are complaining about the cost burden of the ETS – and the Greens want to make that worse.

“New Zealand is a bubble in terms of Covid-19, but it is not, and cannot be, a bubble in terms of our economy. We are an export dependent economy, we rely on demand from international markets and reducing emissions will occur over time as technology, competitiveness and cost burdens allow,” Mr Baker concluded.

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