Bill will help put New Zealand back on the renewables track

Thursday 20 September 2012, 5:13PM
By Labour Party

A member’s bill that aims to address the current Government’s ‘hope and pray’ attitude to tackling climate change ensures all new electricity baseload generation is from renewable sources, its sponsor Labour MP Charles Chauvel says.

“New Zealand needs to do more than just hope that it will reach its renewable targets. This Bill ensures that.

“When last in office, Labour legislated for a renewables preference, as part of our climate change legislation, and in pursuit of the goal to reach 90 per cent renewable electricity generation by 2025, as outlined in our Energy Strategy.

“It was one of the first items of legislation repealed by the incoming National administration in late 2008.

“The year before that I chaired the Finance and Expenditure Committee. The evidence heard by the committee then convinced me – and our current Energy and Climate Change spokesperson Moana Mackey, that a renewables preference is important.

“Without a statutory requirement – and all the consequences likely to flow from it - it is very difficult to see how we will reach the important but achievable goal of getting nearly all of our electricity from hydro, wind and geothermal sources in just over a decade.

“This would be an achievement that would maximise New Zealand’s competitive advantage.

“We are one of the few nations on the planet that could realistically achieve the three important goals of security of supply; affordability and predictability of pricing, and minimising the environmental impact of energy generation.

“Given that, I am sure my Bill will receive widespread support”, Charles Chauvel said.