No need for green energy bill

UnitedFuture did not support Green MP, Gareth Hughes’ energy Bill because it is unnecessary said UnitedFuture Leader Peter Dunne.

“It is unnecessary because over 80 per cent (in 2014) of New Zealand’s electricity is already generated from renewable sources. Increasing solar power generation would not make a huge difference environmentally as it would displace other renewable generation like wind and geothermal.

“Consumers already have a choice of retailers, offering competitive buy-back prices for excess solar generation and are New Zealander’s are voting with their wallets for renewable energy alternatives, such as solar, and that is creating an increasingly competitive and growing market.

“To claim, as the Greens’ do, that this bill is not a subsidy is typical artifice – by requiring retailers to artificially set a 10-year buy-back rate, increased costs will be ultimately passed through to other electricity consumers. “

“Moreover, all this will occur at a time when consumers are seeing increasing competition in the electricity market leading to flat and decreasing prices.”

“The majority of New Zealand’s electricity generation is renewable and at 80 per cent in 2014, it is the highest in nearly two decades.

“This is likely to increase in future with the closure of fossil-fuelled generation such as in Huntly and Otahuhu with the result that the target of 90 per renewable generation capacity is likely to be achieved by 2025 without the need for the type of Stalinist 5 year plans offered by the Greens”

“I have no problem with the Greens’ worthy objectives – what I have a problem with is legislation that will not achieve them”, said Mr Dunne.

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