Fossil fuel economics – a fairy tale

17/04/2015

It is encouraging to hear the World Bank calling for a halt to fossil fuel subsidies and a collective international binding agreement for a zero-carbon world by the end of the century. But how a carbon tax will make this happen remains a big question mark. History has shown us that we cannot rely on big corporations to move away from their old habits and lead the change needed for the better: How BP had invested in low carbon technology for decades just to abandon them for greater economic gains is a typical example.

In the mean time, the fossil fuel industry has been found to be operating dangerously in New Zealand, with over 130 incidents recorded in the last two years while the government continues to push for more drilling. They want us to believe that NZ can get rich on oil like Norway did. But even the Norwegians know: “When we wake up from this oil bubble … we will realise we will never have a fairy tale like this again.”

So let us get off fossil fuels and move on to more sustainable, democratic, decentralised energy systems that benefit communities and the planet. “We need a managed and fair transition, not a massive oil shock which could plunge the already fuel-poor into further hardship and breed economic and social pandemonium. If today’s anti-oil social movements continue to strengthen, this could happen: through pressure from shareholders, the erosion of oil companies’ social licence, the physical disruption of operations by local resistance, the boom in renewable energy, and public pressure on governments to take more decisive climate action”.


What’re your views on STOS’ request to restrict public access to essential documents?

17/04/2015

EPA is asking for submitters’ views about STOS’ revised application under EEZ s158 to restrict access to the Maui Discharge Management Plan documents Read the rest of this entry »


Taranaki oil and gas tour

14/04/2015

Google map with site specific information:

Download some notes for your trip here.


When logic and environmental stewardship fails, hit them where it hurts

02/04/2015

Mobil tank farm by Richard Robinson

Earlier this year, the publicly owned Waterfront Auckland was ordered to pay Mobil nearly $1 million, after losing the High Court battle trying to get Mobil pay for environmental damages. Mobil and several other companies had leased the land for decades, their activities contaminated prime coastal land. The judge ruled that Mobil did not have the contractual obligation to decontaminate the land!  Read the rest of this entry »


NZ govt offers open access to petroleum exploration – 7 new block offers 2015

26/03/2015

NZPAM 2015 Block Offers 30March2015LR

At this week’s Petroleum Summit in Auckland, Energy and Resources Minister Simon Bridges announced seven new block offers, encompassing 430,000 sq.km. – nearly half of New Zealand – for petroleum exploration. Read the rest of this entry »


US tightens fracking regulations

25/03/2015

US Maryland has now declared a moratorium on fracking, classifying it an ‘Ultrahazardous Activity‘ and imposing strict financial liabilities on companies. Across the US, companies wanting to frack on federal lands must now disclose contents of fracking chemicals and allow government inspection of wells.


Industry spins: Time for some counter-arguments, anyone?

20/03/2015

A counter-spin here perhaps: Mighty River shutting down Southdown station (NZ Herald, 24 March 2015)

Region remains energised – report (TDN, 20 March)

Gas and renewables can be bedfellows (TDN, 16 March)

Beat climate change by finding more gas (TDN, 5 March) – Response from L DeVantier and C Cheung (TDN, 10March)


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