New Plymouth MP on the oil and gas ban

New Plymouth MP writes:

I’m not disappointed – I’m angry!

A kick in the guts, a wrecking ball for the region, killing the golden goose. All these phrases express the emotional response to the Ardern-Peters Government’s announcement to end new offshore oil and gas exploration. Without doubt more bad news is still to come as the Green Party and Greenpeace make onshore exploration their next target. 

Hard to imagine that won’t have the same fate unless the Government changes.

The Ardern-Peters Government has made a significant misstep in their approach. New Zealand has 10 years of known gas supply lefts. We haven’t had a gas discovery for eight years. With existing exploration hoping to make a discovery, it has a 10-15% chance of success.

When a discovery is made, it will take a further ten years of development before gas is available for market. Just do the math, without considering any chilling effect on investment the Government’s decision has created, we should get ready for a gasless future. 

With every fifth day of our electricity generated from fossil fuels, mostly gas – we have a problem. When electricity demand increases because of the growth of electric vehicles in New Zealand, we have a compounded problem. Wind and solar energy might contribute, but both are intermittent. This will require overbuild and capacity charging, leading to higher electricity prices. With gas possibly gone, and any shortfall in renewables, we’re left with coal to keep our lights on. Emissions will likely rise rather than fall. 

Yep the Government has managed to come up with a policy that both effs over Taranaki and increases greenhouse gas emissions.

Gas replacing coal is one of the key reasons why energy emissions stalled in their growth in 2014, 2015 and 2016 according to the International Energy Agency.

James Shaw has said no to that, because according to the Paris Accord, the market for gas is going to dry up and no one will need it. That’s an unrealistic proposal. The IEA have said in 2050, 50 per cent of world energy will still be fossil fuel based. 

The Government has taken a purist position that harms the environment and harms New Zealand – just so they can boast overseas about what good works they are doing.

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