Labour’s energy policy shows progress, but more action needed to protect the planet

The Green Party says Labour’s energy policy is a step in the right direction, but the Greens would go further and faster to meaningfully tackle the climate crisis.

Green Party Co-leader and Climate Change spokesperson James Shaw said today:

“The Green Party knows that we must take bold action, now, if we have any chance of ensuring future generations have a safe planet to live on. That means an urgent end to coal and much more support for solar, like in the Green Party’s Clean Energy Plan.

“We have a crisis on our hands. The science is clear that urgent transformation is needed to ensure a stable climate for future generations.

“We’re pleased that Labour has joined the Greens in our commitment to bringing forward the target of 100% renewable energy to 2030, instead of 2035. We pushed for this back in 2017, and are pleased they’ve come to the table on this. This demonstrates the strong partnership between the Green Party and Labour.

“Labour’s policy to ‘investigate’ solar could go further. Transpower has already done the work and shown that more solar is an important part of meeting our future energy needs. It’s time to get on with installing solar and batteries on all suitable state-owned homes, and creating a $250m fund to support communities to move to clean energy.

“Labour’s plan also doesn’t move fast enough to phase out coal. While they’ve signalled some action here, it’s less than what’s required. The Greens have committed to ending industrial coal use by 2030, because any less is simply not enough.

“We also welcome their commitment to banning new thermal energy generation, and revising the National Policy for Renewable Energy Generation, which are both Green policies. This is clearly an area the Greens and Labour can work together on.

“Without the Greens at the table, Aotearoa won’t move fast enough to tackle the climate crisis. That’s why it’s so important we are a part of the next government.”

The Green Party’s Clean Energy Plan would:

  • Bring forward the 100% renewables target from 2035, to 2030.
  • Equip all new and existing state-owned homes with solar and batteries.
  • Create a $250m Clean Energy Fund, to support communities, iwi, and hāpu to install solar and batteries.
  • Reinstate the ban on new thermal fossil fuel generation.
  • Triple the existing Government support for businesses to switch to clean energy.
  • Train thousands of people for clean energy careers through an Industry Training Plan.
  • Ban new onshore fossil fuel extraction.

Labour’s plan would:

  • Bring forward the 100% renewables target from 2035, to 2030.
  • ‘Investigate’ barriers to installing solar on private homes, and ‘encourage’ state agencies to reduce their energy costs through solar.
  • Reinstate the ban on new thermal baseload generation.
  • Increase EECA funding for businesses to switch to clean energy, from $4.6m to $8m a year.

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