Energy Resources Aotearoa Chief Executive, John Carnegie has called on the new Government to act urgently to restore investment confidence in New Zealand’s upstream oil and gas sector or risk local energy security.
His comments follow the release today of the Gas Supply and Demand Study by the Gas Industry Company.
“This report is a stark reminder that New Zealand’s gas supply is constrained, and that investment is urgently needed to develop our resources and firm up our energy security. The Government needs to act swiftly to avert a dire situation where our energy supply can no longer meet our growing energy demand,” said Mr Carnegie (pictured).
He said the study models various scenarios, including where large energy users that underpin investment leave New Zealand.
“But less industry would not mean more energy for others. The departure of large energy users would result in serious security of supply shortfalls for New Zealand, where not enough electricity would be available for the country at times of peak demand.”
“We cannot risk New Zealand’s manufacturing base moving overseas. To keep them here, we must ensure we have a secure and affordable supply of energy so that firms remain internationally competitive. The best way to do that is by developing our natural gas resources.
“We are encouraged by the report’s findings about the role biogas and other renewable gases could play in meeting residential energy needs, and we expect they will play a role in New Zealand’s future energy mix. But such niche fuels will will not deliver energy at the same scale as natural gas, which is needed to power the broader economy.”
Mr Carnegie said the report adds further weight to the “growing number of voices” that have called for an enabling regime for carbon capture and storage.
“The paper shows that carbon capture and storage will help to reduce emissions below the Climate Change Commission’s demonstration pathway even if new gas resources are brought to market.”
“Using New Zealand’s domestic natural gas resources will help keep the lights on, retain industry and jobs throughout the country, and will be a much more emissions-friendly solution than relying upon imports of LNG and coal. A triple win for all Kiwis!” he said.