Green Party calls for investigation of clean alternatives to Huntly coal

The Green Party has today written to Energy and Resources Minister Simon Bridges, asking him to commission an independent study into the best options for replacing coal-burning electricity generation at Huntly with cleaner alternatives.

The call follows electricity industry backlash against the decision by Huntly power plant owner Genesis to stop burning coal in 2018, and pressure from the industry for New Zealand to keep burning coal to generate electricity.

“With the pressure coming on Genesis to keep burning coal, the Government needs to show leadership to ensure our last 1980s dirty power station stops burning coal for good,” Green Party energy and resources spokesperson Gareth Hughes said.

“The development of new energy targets announced today by the Minister won’t stop Huntly spewing black coal smoke into the air just south of our biggest city.

“The National Government shouldn’t sit on its hands and let its low carbon price continue to see coal burnt for power into the foreseeable future. Without a proper carbon price, there’s no incentive to reduce pollution at all.

“Minister Bridges shouldn’t pass up this opportunity to end a major source of greenhouse gas pollution and develop new jobs in cleaner alternatives.

“Burning coal isn’t the only way to keep the lights on. I’m asking the Government to investigate the economic and environmental effects of cleaner options, including replacing coal with wood, wind, and new storage technologies.

“The UK’s largest coal-fired power plant, Drax, has been burning wood waste since 2013. We could use our existing wood wastes and develop a more mature bioenergy market, which would also help Fonterra replace its substantial coal use.

“Coal plants are closing all around the world as countries get serious about their climate change obligations following the Paris conference. The New Zealand Government needs to get us off the coal train too,” said Mr Hughes.

Latest Environment Announcements

Story

Budget 2022: Greens call for urgency with nature-first climate investments

Budget 2022 shows progress on conservation commitments in the Green Party’s cooperation agreement Green Party achievements in the last Government ...
Read More

Story

Nature needs us to act right now

The Green Party welcomes the release of the implementation plan for Te Mana o te Taiao Aotearoa New Zealand Biodiversity Strategy and calls on the ...
Read More

Story

Urgent action needed to bring natural environment back from the brink

The release today of Environment Aotearoa 2022 is a sobering reminder of what is at stake if the Government does not step up and take urgent action...
Read More

Story

Greens welcome Three Waters recommendations

The Green Party welcomes the recommendations of the Three Waters independent working group and urges the Government to seriously consider the repor...
Read More

Story

Green Party says Government needs to do better to protect our drinking water

The Green Party is calling on the Government to improve environmental standards so every New Zealander has access to clean, healthy drinking water.
Read More

Story

The time to protect our oceans is now

The Green Party is calling on the Government to support a strong global treaty at the United Nations to protect our oceans, as Greenpeace hands ove...
Read More

Latest Climate Change Announcements

Story

Green Party backs School Strike demands

The Green Party backs the demands of the School Strike for Climate.
Read More

Story

Big emitters will have to do more to cut emissions

The biggest polluters will have to do more to help meet climate targets because of changes the Government is making to decade-old settings that hav...
Read More

Story

Pricing must cut agriculture emissions

Cutting climate pollution must be the number one priority for Cabinet when considering how it intends to price agricultural emissions, the Green Pa...
Read More

Story

Agricultural emissions proposal falls short

The He Waka Eke Noa agricultural emissions pricing proposal leaves more questions than answers, the Green Party says.
Read More

Story

Budget 2022: James Shaw Budget Speech

Mr Speaker, It has taken four-and-a-half years to even start to turn the legacy of inaction and neglect from the last time they were in Government ...
Read More

Story

Budget 2022: Greens celebrate landmark investment in climate action

Landmark week for climate action concludes with climate budget Largest ever investment in climate action one of many Green Party wins throughout B...
Read More

Latest Energy and Resources Announcements

Story

The search for fossil fuels must come to an end

Following a High Court decision yesterday the Green Party is calling on the Government to amend the Crown Minerals Act to end fossil fuel extractio...
Read More

Story

Budget 2022: Greens welcome winter energy support and funding for community energy

New cost of living payment closely aligned to Green Party policy to expand the Winter Energy Payment Extension and improvement of Warmer Kiwi Home...
Read More

Story

Supercharging decarbonisation & transforming the energy system

Scaling up actions to decarbonise industry with high impact co-investment of national significance Investing in electricity infrastructure to supp...
Read More

Story

No new mines: It’s time to uphold your promise

The Green Party has launched a campaign calling on the Minister for Conservation, Kiritapu Allan and Minister for Energy, Megan Woods to fulfil a p...
Read More

Story

Clean, reliable electricity needs active Government leadership

Government leadership to increase reliable, clean, renewable electricity generation is the only credible way to prevent power outages as we tackle ...
Read More

Story

Electricity market reforms needed

The Electricity Authority’s finding that an “Undesirable Trading Saturation” caused power prices to rise and extra fossil fuels to be burnt shows t...
Read More