Govt needs to join 21st century on clean energy technologies

A new report on solar power and electric vehicles is further evidence that the Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) isn’t working, and that the National Government needs to fix what’s holding New Zealand back from making the most of clean-energy technologies, the Green Party said.

The report was produced by independent energy economists at Concept Consulting.

“This report shows that National needs to join the 21st century and set up the right market structures to encourage new clean-energy technologies,” said Green Party energy spokesperson Gareth Hughes.

“The Government’s broken ETS and old-fashioned electricity pricing rules mean that people won’t ever get the full economic benefits of electric cars, home insulation, and efficient appliances, unless we fix the rules.

“National has been making excuses instead of showing leadership, which is holding Kiwis back from getting cheaper, cleaner electricity.

“More time-of-use power pricing can help make sure Kiwi households face a level playing field when making choices about their energy use, and encourage efficient electric car charging and batteries to complement home solar systems.

“Unless we fix the ETS, decisions about energy use are distorted because no-one pays the full cost of pollution or reaps the full benefits of energy efficiency.

“Unfortunately, it’s only now that people are opting to go solar that the power companies are waking up to what the Greens have been saying for years: we need to fix the ETS and get better real-time power price signals to keep costs and pollution down.

“I agree with the report that solar isn’t the best option for everyone, but it’s important that people who do choose to go solar aren’t penalised with unfair extra charges on their power bills,” Mr Hughes said.

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