New oil and gas permits welcome news

National is welcoming the news that two new oil and gas exploration permits have been granted, National’s Energy and Resources spokesperson Barbara Kuriger says.

“Labour’s banning of offshore exploration in 2018 came without warning and severely undermined industry confidence.

“Such was the shock to confidence that in just three years since the announcement, over 80 per cent of offshore exploration permits have been relinquished.

“Far from reduce greenhouse gas emissions, the reduction in gas supply has seen coal imports at record levels and wholesale electricity prices four-times what they were at the time of the ban.

“With gas supply dwindling, we have seen Huntly turning to burning record amounts of coal and even generating some electricity from diesel.

“Under National, renewable electricity increased from 65 to 85 per cent of supply.

“New Zealand can continue to have high levels of renewable electricity generation, but there is always a need for gas to manage peaks in electricity demand and dry years.

“News that exploration companies are willing to once again make investment in New Zealand is welcome, and will see electricity prices and greenhouse gas emissions fall.”