ICCC report confirms importance of natural gas

The importance of natural gas in keeping power prices down and reducing emissions has been confirmed by the Government’s Interim Climate Change Committee (ICCC), says the Petroleum Exploration and Production Association of New Zealand (PEPANZ).

“The ICCC’s report concludes that moving away from natural gas and to 100% renewable electricity would be enormously costly to New Zealand households and for little environmental gain,” says PEPANZ CEO Cameron Madgwick.

“Natural gas supports and enables renewable energy by keeping electricity prices much lower than would otherwise be the case. This is especially important when demand is high and other sources can’t keep up.

“A 100% target could see a 14% increase in retail electricity prices for households, 29% for commercial and 39% for industrial users.

“The report warns that ‘increased retail electricity prices will disproportionately impact low-income households, including Māori and Pasifika households.’

“Natural gas can also help lower emissions by encouraging industrial users to switch away from coal to electricity - a win-win outcome.

“We strongly support the focus on lowering New Zealand’s emissions in the least painful way to New Zealanders, and clearly natural gas needs to be a part of the solution.”