Fair hearing for Denniston in Environment Court

Forest and Bird deserves every success in its Environment Court case to protect the distinctive coal measures ecosystems and landscapes of the Denniston Plateau. This week the Court began hearing the Society’s appeal against West Coast councils granting resource consents under the RMA to Australian miner, Bathurst Resources’ destructive plans for an open cast coal […]

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Insulation shambles needs sorting so Christchurch homes can be warmer, drier and healthier

Our houses help determine our health. Everyone has a right to a warm, dry and healthy home.  Warm homes can reduce respiratory illnesses and mean fewer days off sick from school or work, and fewer premature deaths among older persons. Much of our housing stock is not built for our climate. Around 1.6 million New […]

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Stratford public meeting: unanimous support for fracking moratorium from the frontlines

Last night I attended a public meeting in Stratford, Taranaki to discuss the local hydraulic fracturing or fracking occurring in the region. The community passed a unanimous motion to call on the Taranaki Councils to place an immediate moratorium on fracking, and to call for an independent inquiry into the process and what is occurring in Taranaki.

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The best way to oil independence is to provide alternatives and use less

The Ministry of Economic Development’s Briefing to the incoming Energy Minister predicts New Zealand could become a net exporter of petroleum by 2030 if new oil fields are developed. It’s a laudable goal to reduce our expensive dependence on foreign oil but it would be a lot smarter to invest in alternatives like better public transport, renewable electricity and sustainable alternative fuels.

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Energy Strategy to worsen Energy Outlook

The Ministry of Economic Development have released their Energy Outlook for New Zealand and it should be a wake-up call for the Government. The report projects New Zealand’s future energy supply, demand, prices and greenhouse gas emissions but the major challenges identified in it are at odds with the Governments ‘drill it, mine’ fossil-fuel-focused Energy Strategy.

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Boom times for oil and gas?

This morning’s  Dominion article about ‘boom times’ for the gas and oil exploration industry is an intriguing, even slightly funny, mix of boosterism, drum beating and dissimulation. The Chair of PEPANZ appears almost breathless with excitement as he seeks to fulfil the primary objective of his organisation, “to publicise, promote and advance the interests of […]

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How many jobs will oil and gas bring NZ?

On Tuesday the Government released the final version of its backwards-looking energy strategy. Of passing note is the removal of any overt reference to lignite coal.  Of course bioenergy could be code for it, or ‘alternative transport fuels’ (the Energy Outlook 2010 specifically cites lignite diesel as an alternative transport fuel with potential.) But basically […]

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Energy security and business

An interesting document has come out of Lloyd that reveals some of their thinking about energy security, and the risks and opportunities it provides for business.

Lloyds point out that 300 years of experience has given them a bit of an understanding of risk, and it is from that platform that they suggest that now is a really good time to get serious about finding ‘a new energy paradigm’.

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Mokihinui – Brownlee’s burp

So this week our Minister of Mining and Damming (aka Energy and Resources) let slip that the Mokihinui hydro-dam “would not go ahead”. Does he know something or was it just his ‘opinion’? Whatever the brain-burp was, he was ill-advised to say it but it’d be nice to think that there may be Moki fans in Government – perhaps they are closet readers of the 1400-fan facebook page!

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Love Wild Rivers? Give them your support

Cool. Today a new campaign has been launched for one of New Zealand’s most iconic features – our Wild Rivers. It’s great to see diverse groups – tree-huggers, deer-stalkers, bird-watchers, knobbly-kneed trampers, sharp-edged climbers, risky rafters, kool-kat kayakers, and angelic anglers – representing “over 100,000 New Zealanders” and united in seeking to protect wild rivers […]

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Procurement: which costs are saved?

The Government has just announced it is to review and reform state sector procurement. The Government Procurement Reform Agenda is based around four key themes: ·         Cost savings. ·         Building procurement capability and capacity. ·         Enhanced business participation. ·         Improved governance, oversight and accountability. Cost savings:  just to the Government’s expenditure or also saving costs […]

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Jeanette questions the wisdom of the Genesis board

Jeanette asked the Minister for State Owned Enterprises in the House yesterday whether he has confidence in the board of Genesis Energy. Genesis is proceeding with a consent application for a gas fired power station for which it admits it has no gas and is not economically viable “in a real-world, commercial sense”. The Rodney […]

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Reasons not to believe in John Key’s leadership

The Energy [R]evolution is Greenpeace’s plan to save the planet from catastrophic climate change. Susan Sarandon narrates the first of three ‘Reasons to Believe’. This one explains why energy efficiency is so important and also so easily achieved, just by small changes such as a switch from traditional lightbulbs to more energy efficient ones. In […]

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