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New Zealand energy greenhouse gas report released

28 September 2012

The use of renewable energy is helping keep down New Zealand’s greenhouse gas emissions, a new report has found.

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s 2012 New Zealand Energy Greenhouse Gas report, released today, reveals a two percent drop in emissions from the energy sector between 2010 and 2011.

“This is mainly due to a 10 percent drop in emissions from electricity generation, thanks to high rainfall allowing a lot of hydro-generation, reduced demand in Canterbury following the earthquake, and an increase in wind and geothermal power displacing the reliance on coal and gas,” acting manager of MBIE’s energy information and modelling group, Bryan Field said.

Between 1990 and 2011 emissions in the energy sector increased by a third – with emissions from electricity generation going up by 50 percent and transport by 63 percent.

“The increase is largely due to population and economic growth requiring more electricity, more cars on our roads and more freight. A move towards freight being transported by road rather than rail and boat has also led to increased emissions,” Mr Field said.

“However, over the last decade the amount of energy being generated by wind and geothermal has grown significantly, causing growth in emissions from electricity generation to flatten.

“The transport sector has also seen improvements, due to better load factors, fuel efficiency and maintenance.”