BusinessNZ Energy Council


Our sustainable energy future: Cost and compromise

Mar 22, 2023 | News

Source: Business NZ

The Business Energy Council (BEC) says several reports released this week show the need to carefully consider trade-offs as we move toward a more sustainable energy future.

BEC Executive Director Tina Schirr says the long-awaited release of New Zealand’s first national EV charging strategy, the latest IPCC report, Castalia’s report on 2035/2050 vision for gas, and the Consumer Advisory Council’s sentiment survey results each send a clear message that as we move away from the status quo and towards more renewable energy, timely investment will be critical.

“When investing, it’s important we don’t box the sector in with reactive policies which only create barriers to achieve the transition itself.

“It’s also clear that in discussing these trade-offs, more consultation and public debate is needed.”

A survey commissioned by the Consumer Advocacy Council shows that there will be some trade-offs between an increased level of system resilience and associated cost.

“Cyclone Gabrielle has shown the severe impact that outages have and highlighted the need for New Zealand’s electricity network to be more resilient to a changing climate.

“Consumers worry about the cost of electricity, both today and in the future. But resilience comes at a cost.”

The Government’s long-term strategic vision for national electric vehicle charging infrastructure shows that New Zealand is at the start of its transition journey.

“This requires us to think hard about how our new EV charging infrastructure can avoid cost increases in our electricity distribution network – a network already facing the brunt of extreme weather,” Schirr says.

A new report released by advisory firm Castalia to inform the NZ government’s gas transition plan shows that moving too fast on the gas phase out could come with large costs for consumers, and risk security of supply.

“All of these publications grapple with challenges around the energy trilemma and underline the big questions that need answering as the election nears: Who will pay for extra resilience, and how much is enough? Are we prepared to pay the costs, and risk security of supply that could arise from moving too fast?”


Links to reports mentioned:

New Zealand’s first national EV charging strategy

IPCC report

Castalia’s report on 2035/2050 vision for gas

Consumer Advisory Council’s sentiment survey

For more information contact:

Callum Roberts | Communications Advisor BusinessNZ, BusinessNZ

Email: [email protected], Mobile: +64 (0)22 653 8967

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