350 Aotearoa campaigner Erica Finnie said “It is fantastic to see a clear pathway to align our energy sector with Aotearoa’s zero-carbon goals. Dirty fossil fuels have no place in our future and this is the first plan we have seen from any of our major parties that sets out how Aotearoa could move, and move quickly, to phase out coal, oil and gas use in a way that leaves no individual, worker or community behind.”
The Greens’ Clean Energy Plan includes a training programme to help create sustainable careers and ensure a just transition to new clean energy jobs.
“350 Aotearoa commends the Greens’ commitment to work alongside the energy industry and unions to support workers into clean energy jobs in our transition towards a low-carbon future,” said Finnie.
“We welcome the near-immediate ban on new industrial fossil-fuelled systems for heating, and the commitment to end all industrial coal and gas use by 2035. We also call for a comprehensive plan to transition all schools and hospitals away from fossil-fuel boilers to ensure our children in schools and patients in healthcare are breathing clean air.”
The Plan offers grants to cover 50% of the cost of a standard sized solar and battery system for any household, funded by the Government’s COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund.
“Across Aotearoa, communities could have the power to make their own energy from the sun, wind and water. The Greens’ plan to subsidise solar infrastructure for homes, and equip public houses with solar panels and batteries gives power back to people to create their own affordable, clean energy. This is a dual solution to support climate action, and make warm, dry homes more affordable for all New Zealanders,” said Finnie.
350 Aotearoa notes that the Greens’ Clean Energy Plan does not address the investment of New Zealand’s public funds in fossil fuels. “We need to ensure that New Zealanders aren’t contributing to the expansion of fossil fuels in other countries, and stop investing in overseas coal, oil, and gas companies that are threatening our global climate and impacting local communities. Our public funds including ACC and New Zealand Superfund that have significant investments in coal, oil, and gas companies need to cut all ties with the fossil fuel industry and align with Aotearoa’s climate change commitments,” Finnie added.