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What’s Wrong with the Government’s Energy Strategy?

In a country that promotes and relies upon its clean and green image as much as New Zealand does, and arguably more than any other country, it simply isn’t logical to assume that we can invest heavily in fossil fuel extraction and not damage our brand and suffer the economic consequences of that damage.

The Government’s proposed energy policies are very much founded on the premise that we can have our cake and eat it too.

Energy efficiency needs to play a larger role in New Zealand’s energy strategy. We import approximately $NZ6 billion of oil a year, exacerbated by the fact that we are inefficient energy consumers, so is the answer to invest in exploring for more oil, or to use less, so the dollars can be invested in more productive sectors?

Around 60 per cent of New Zealand’s total energy mix comes from fossil fuels, and in our view this needs to be reduced by shifting to more profitable, longer-term sustainable alternatives.

New Zealand needs to improve the energy efficiency of its transport sector, and dramatically increase policy focus on energy efficient buildings, bio-mass supported co-energy plants, and sustainable primary production. By doing so we not only reduce emissions, we also substitute imported liquid fuels as part of creating a low-carbon future and a self-sustaining domestic market, at the same time as building skills and technologies that are in huge demand in a resource constrained world.

– Rob Morrison, Chairman, Pure Advantage.

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