2007-10-15

New Zealand moving towards Green Energy

From the department of that-can't-be-done-it's-un-Australian:
The New Zealand government is working on a 10 year ban of new construction of gas and coal fired power plants. State owned power generators are already banned from building gas fired plants and the decision whether to extend the ban to private companies will be made soon.

The goal is to reduce carbon emissions and generate 90% of the country’s power from renewable sources by 2025. New Zealand currently produces 70% of its electricity from wind, hydro and geothermal generators. The hope is the ban will speed construction in wind turbines and steam fields.

The ban affects two gas fired power plants currently under consideration. Genesis Power, the government owned utility, and Contact, New Zealand’s largest commercial power company, had planned to spend NZ$1 billion on the projects. Now the companies will need to look for renewable sources for their investments. Contact’s share prices rose on the Wellington stock exchange with news of the ban.

In New Zealand gas prices have been rising and gas production falling over the last 5 years. The higher gas cost has made renewable power cost competitive and Contact has spend NZ$2 billion on wind and geo-thermal electricity production capability. The company want the government to speed up approval of two new steam plants on the North Island.
What is it about New Zealand? They tore up the ANZUS treaty by standing up to America back in the 1980s; they create for themselves a radically different political system; they refuse to join the Iraq war; they manage to have the expertise to create the Lord of the Rings trilogy... and now they are turning to Green energy.

It's downright un-Australian, that's what it is. How do these people expect to give up their sovereignty and become part of Australia if they keep doing things like this? What impudence!

3 comments:

BLBeamer said...

Is it a good or a bad thing to "tear up" treaties?

One Salient Oversight said...

Well the treaty hasn't been "torn up", it's just that New Zealand has essentially opted out of it through its actions.

Read through the history of the ANZUS treaty (Wikipedia) to see what New Zealand did and why the US has suspended its obligations to New Zealand in this treaty.

BLBeamer said...

I'm reasonably familiar with the reasons why New Zealand "opted out".

I just thought it was curious how you implied that the Kiwi's showed some great courage by "standing up to the US" as if there was the slightest chance NZ was under any danger from the US by their "opting out".

My own view is the NZ is a sovereign nation. The ANZUS Treaty was/is a bit of a relic from the WW2 and Cold War eras. Times change and so should treaties.