The Green Party has again called on John Key’s Government to open a formal inquiry into the effects of an imminent oil price shock. Russel Norman revealed that he has approached the Government both informally and formally and been rebuffed each time. And in June, the National and ACT Party members of the Finance and Expenditure Committee scuttled the Green Party’s proposal for a Select Committee inquiry into the imminent oil crunch.
The International Energy Agency (IEA), the US Department of Energy, and Lloyd’s of London are all warning of an imminent oil supply crunch and price spike. Russel is concerned that all these institutions have made it very clear the world is facing an oil price shock in a few short years and this will have a very significant impact on the world economy.
Says he, “No matter how many new oil wells are drilled, New Zealand’s economy will be hit hard by the coming price shocks. It’s time to face the future rather than stick our heads in the sand in the hope that this problem will all go away”.
Colmar Brunton research commissioned by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) has shown that 72% of New Zealanders think the Government should prepare now for future oil price rises by investing in alternative fuels and public transport.
It seems Kiwis understand that this is an opportunity to achieve economic resilience in the face of a changing energy landscape. Those countries that adapt by transitioning to a low carbon economy are the ones that will prosper.
Yet National and ACT, supposedly the parties of sound economic management, are so tied to their 20th century approach that they can’t even hear what the rest of the world is saying when it comes to oil. Adding insult to injury, Gerry Brownlee intends to gut the NZ Energy Strategy, a sad response to the changing world energy picture, lacking any kind of a plan to deal with this risk to our energy security.
At least the public see through it. So a reminder to please ensure John and Gerry get the message by making a submission on the draft Energy Strategy by 5pm this Thursday, 2 September. See our submission guide for help.