New Zealand Bans Fossil Fuel Plant Construction, Advocates Renewable Energy
October 12, 2007 8:52 a.m. EST/ Vittorio Hernandez - AHN News Writer
New Zealand (AHN) - To increase New Zealand's use of renewable energy,
the Ministry of Energy banned Thursday the construction of fossil fuel
plants. The 10 year ban covers only state-owned power firms, but the
Ministry is considering extending it to the private sector. The
Ministry also allotted $2 billion NZ for the development of cleaner
alternative energy sources.
Government expects all generators...to take its view into account when
considering new generation investments," The New Zealander quoted
Energy Minister David Parker.
The only exception is for emergency power back-up systems.
With this new long-term energy policy,
state-owned Genesis Energy's plan to build a $500 NZ million gas
turbine plant near Auckland is scrapped. The mothballed project, two
years on the drawing board, intended to generate 360 megawatts of power
for 360,000 households. Genesis did not expect a sudden shift in the
state's energy policy as it even briefed analysts this week on the
progress of the Rodney plant.
Minister Michael Cullen backed the Energy Ministry's decision. He said
New Zealand does not need additional thermal capacity given its vast
wind, hydro and geothermal resources. The country is the world's number
one producer of geothermal energy.
the new energy plan, the government targets by 2025 it will source 90
percent of its electricity from renewable energy, up from less than 70
percent at present.
also includes a 25 percent higher fuel efficiency for new and used
imported vehicles by 2015, more cycling and walking routes and a 10
percent reduction in single occupant travels.