Facing up to peak oil

Written By: - Date published: 1:25 pm, June 16th, 2008 - 38 comments
Categories: economy, labour, national, tax, workers' rights - Tags: ,

The Government’s independent report on petrol prices is bit of a sop to be the public, really. The world oil price is driving petrol prices; any efficiencies that could be gained in New Zealand would be small and would not change the upward trend. Nor is a Fuel Watch website like Australia’s going to do anything to bring prices down. Calls by the AA and other organisations for petrol companies to hold off a few days on increases are also pretty useless the price is going up anyway, why get wound up over whether it happens on Monday or Wednesday? Like governments worldwide, Labour and National have rightly rejected removing fuel tax.

Tinkering on the margins of the price of petrol doesn’t matter. It’s going up and nothing New Zealand does will stop that. We need to acknowledge that the supply of oil is peaking and serious effort needs to go into adapting our economy a world without cheap oil.

So, it was interesting to hear both Helen Clark and John Key mention peak oil in the last few days. This morning on Breakfast, Clark said prices aren’t coming down. ‘..at some point you reach peak oil supply but we are changing our behaviour in this country, people are buying small cars, they’re looking for the fuel efficiency label and taking public transport’. In an interview with Mikey Havoc, Key said ‘I’m not in the camp that we’re at peak oil’ and proposed turning our coal reserves into diesel.

Neither is presenting a strategy to get us through peak oil with minimal pain, but at least Clark acknowledges it is real. National has shown that on this major issue, like so many others, they have no answers to offer and their head firmly in the sand.

I’m looking forward to Labour and the Greens presenting a suite of election policies that keep wages growing, so workers don’t lose out on the increased cost of fuel, and major investment in public transport so kiwis can cut their petrol use.

38 comments on “Facing up to peak oil ”

  1. Oh well, at least the enquiry will settle the issue about whether the oil companies are ratcheting up pump prices at the first opportunity and then procrastinating when oil prices fall.

    Anyway, excellent post. Spot on.

  2. Studies have been done in the US. Their conclusions tend to be that petrol companies do move up quickly and down slowly but they move up less than the cost of oil. So, a spike in crude is reflected as a longer but lower bump in petrol prices.

    But the whole premise of the ‘quick up, slow down’ notion is that prices are coming down, don’t see that happening.

  3. She also mentioned it at a Labour Party fundraiser in Christchurch on Saturday. I’ll try to post a video on NewZBlog tonight if I can.

  4. T-rex 4

    Did Key really say that???

    God he’s a silly bunt. You’d think after his original stance on global warming (and recent flipflop) he’d have learnt to actually look into issues before forming a stupid opinion baesd on what he’d like, but no, same old.

    That said, I’ve no problem with his suggestion on diesel from coal if it’d be cost effective in the short term, just so long as it’s part of a transition rather than a further delaying tactic. And I doubt that’s the case, as with the ETS National is all about delaying.

  5. Lew 5

    Fischer-Tropsch fuel conversion from coal is possible (not in theory, in practice it’s used today in South Africa and was used with great success in Nazi Germany); the main reason it hasn’t been considered is that it’s energy-intensive and not economically viable until oil prices reach a certain point. Also I seem to recall that it only produces diesel and a short-chain hydrocarbon, not much use for petrol engines.

    Given NZ’s coal reserves it is a potential source of fuel – even with the high catalytic threshold, it’d be a means of converting electricity into a fuel for vehicles, though I wonder if it’s not just more sensible to go straight to electric vehicles.

    But given the high price of oil, the major problem isn’t economics, it’s pollution. There’s a lot of the coal which isn’t any use, and that by-product has to go someplace. Where do we dump it all?

    The other problem is that the current processes are fairly crude, and the R&D sunk cost of establishing plants for conversion in NZ will be massive. Is holding onto fossil fuels worth it?

    L

  6. The Labour Party is ignoring the issue. Just listen to any of Cullen’s answers in the house on the question. They’re certainly not taking any moves to steer the country away from the effects, and they’ve ignored it for years.

  7. roger nome 7

    John Key’s dismissive attitude toward the issue of peak oil is worrying, though predictable. I wonder what information he bases his sanguine outlook on?

    Being a market fundamentalist he probably looks at it being an “investment” problem, rather than a geological fact.

    People who think more investment and higher prices will spur investment and technological development, thus precluding a near-term peak should think about why oil recovery rates have been stagnant at 30-37% of oil-in-place for quite some time.

    Saudi Aramco may have some high recovery factor fields such as Abqaiq and Shaybah, but an average recovery factor range from 30-37% is assumed for the total OIIP in Saudi Arabia’s fields. The trend of the recovery factor for Saudi Aramco indicates that there has been no effect on the recovery factor by recent technological advances in producing wells.

    http://www.theoildrum.com/node/4153

    If the perennial denialists of the National Party win the next election, if Key’s speeches are anything to go by, they will deliver an increase in spending on roads, and likely a decrease in spending on sustainable transport infrastructure. Exactly the opposite of what this country needs going into peak oil.

  8. Stephen 8

    Could someone please tell Helen that ‘building more motorways is probably not going to help things now is it’.

  9. Phil 9

    “he’d have learnt to actually look into issues before forming a stupid opinion”

    OPEC have looked into the issue long and hard, and they don’t think we’re anywhere near peak oil either.

    Captcha; “Orinoka where”
    He’s probably in Wimbeldon Comman?

  10. djp 10

    The people in the know seem to be saying that the current oil price is not being driven by a fundamental lack of supply but by futures speculators (similar to tech stocks in the late 90’s and property a couple of years ago).

    The thing about speculative bubbles is that you know that it *will* come crashing down like a house of cards but you never know when.

  11. Daveo 11

    djp. That’s not what the oil specialist from Goldman Sachs was saying on Agenda yesterday.

  12. Stephen: June 16, 2008 at 1:59 pm: “Could someone please tell Helen that ‘building more motorways is probably not going to help things now is it’.”

    I did have to laugh at the response from the kiwiblog right when Tane W asked on KB: “”So, anyone still keen to build new motorways?’ Came the response, “Yep and a nuclear powerstation to charge my hybrid with.’

    He’ll know better than to pose rhetorical questions to the KR in future.

    Edit, djp: That’s not what the International Energy Agency are saying. Are they “in the know”?

  13. insider 13

    well roger he is probably right to be suspicious given the poor record of peakies going back 150 years.

    It’s a bit like Shrek’s donkey: “Are we there yet? Are we there yet?”.

    creey captcha “undrilled market”

  14. djp 14

    Daveo,

    Well, different people say different things.

    Crude oil went from about $50 a barrel in Jan 2007 to $100 a barrel in Dec 2007. That is a 100% increase over 12 months.

    For the price increase to be based on market fundamentals it would have to be driven either huge consumption increases or huge supply decreases (or a combination) in one year. It just hasn’t happened (unless I missed the news).

  15. Draco TB 15

    OPEC have looked into the issue long and hard, and they don’t think we’re anywhere near peak oil either.

    You mean people, like Saudi Arabia where their oil reserves have remained constant or grown since the 1990s even though they’ve been pumping hundreds of millions of barrels per year, are saying that there’s no Peak Oil?

    For the price increase to be based on market fundamentals it would have to be driven either huge consumption increases or huge supply decreases (or a combination) in one year. It just hasn’t happened (unless I missed the news).

    Well, there’s certainly been an increase in demand – notably from India and China but the oil producers haven’t been increasing supply.

  16. T-rex 16

    “OPEC have looked into the issue long and hard, and they don’t think we’re anywhere near peak oil either.”

    Perhaps, but then again, they’re coining money on the back of demand and still have a lot of oil left to sell – they hardly want alternatives to be investigated too thoroughly just yet!

    Insider – take your point about the flawed predictions of the past. But the question you really should be asking is not “how much oil is left” but “how much new exploration is being done, and is it really realistic to expect new capacity to come online fast enough to meet anticipated demand growth AND depletion of existing fields”. The answer is pretty obviously no, even if you want to assume that there are still sufficient reserves to be found.

    There’s also the issue of accessibility. No one is (or perhaps “no one should be”) debating the existence of reserves (various oil sands for example), but actually getting oil and keeping it cost effective is another matter.

  17. T-rex 17

    Draco – Exactly. Asking OPEC about the viability of oil is like asking the NEI about the viability of Nuclear power. They’re hardly going to say “twilight technology, start thinking about and deploying alternatives now, we’re plenty rich enough already thanks”

  18. gobsmacked 18

    John Key will propose cutting petrol tax.

    It will be a clever (i.e. shameless and empty) pseudo-policy, which he will soon announce (sorry, “have a look at”, because “Kiwis are hurting at the pumps” and “the government can’t keep ignoring them”).

    He will call for a cut in GST or petrol tax until personal income tax cuts take effect, on Oct 1. National did the same in 2005, just days before the election. It’s a way of being populist while keeping a “responsible” fig-leaf. Key will call this “emergency relief”.

    But the election will (almost certainly) be AFTER Oct. 1, so he won’t actually need to put the policy into practice. He just needs to propose, not deliver. Cullen & co will call it the blatant politicking that it is, but most commentators will not bother with principles of long-term economic policy, but will instead tell us about “perception”. And a large chunk of the electorate will fall for it.

    You have read it here first.

  19. Stephen 20

    I can sort of appreciate that people still want to be able to use ‘individual’ transport rather than relying on public transport jafapete, and nuclear is a tricky one, rather than cut and dried I think…

  20. roger nome 21

    Phil:

    Why would you listen to what OPEC has to say about peak oil?

    http://www.theoildrum.com/node/4153

  21. jh 22

    The only Insider that counts is a big dipstick in all the wells. In those bib wells they have men in boats (foriegn workers) doing depth soundings…. It’s a dirty job but the pay is good.

  22. T-rex 23

    Nuclear is tricky, for sure, I have no problem with people who present it as such. But often you hear it brought out as a potential silver bullet that would solve all ills if only the damn greenies would get over themselves. Especially when you hear things like “New plants are safe” and “the waste issue is easily solved by putting it in a hole”.

  23. Stephen 24

    Yeah, there are so many contextual issues surrounding nuclear that it is almost pointless to wholeheartedly support or despise it without looking at what particular options would be applicable IN NEW ZEALAND. e.g. earthquake zones, size of plant, decommissioning costs etc etc…

  24. oilpop 25

    No to to mention the brisk economic activity that the decline of oil prices will being in the months to come, anybody who doesn’t buy some puts on oil options righ now, is missing oen of the best financial opportunities of 2008. Godspeed

  25. How do we know that the oil producing states are not just pulling an enron?

  26. Rex Widerstrom 27

    Nor is a Fuel Watch website like Australia’s going to do anything to bring prices down.

    Errr… wrong. And wrong.

    FuelWatch isn’t “a website”. It has a website, but so do BP, Shell etc. FuelWatch is a scheme that requires service stations to publish what their at-the-pump price will be for the following day. They are legally required to maintain that price for 24 hours. The prices are published in the newspaper, appear on the commercial TV station’s news bulletins (between the markets and the weather, usually) and are mentioned on the radio. TV and radio usually restrict themselves to the dozen or so cheapest.

    Thus the information is readily available and people do respond, as is evidenced by the queues at the stations advertised as cheapest.

    And it does result in lower prices. WA has had FuelWatch for years now and the prices it’s drivers are charged are consistently lower than those of the eastern states, despite WA’s incomes being amongst the highest in the country and it’s demand – especially for diesel to fuel the mining industry – being high.

    It’s failing (which is seized upon by critics) is that it won’t permit service stations to lower prices beyond those that are published by FuelWatch. So if the station across the road from the one with the cheapest fuel wants to compete by giving up it’s price-gouging ways and lowering it’s prices, it’ll be breaking the law if it does.

    Provided that restriction is removed, FuelWatch is well worth considering for NZ.

    captcha: Reading’s hitting (which, when run together, conjures an unfortunate image of Al Bundy and his morning newspaper).

  27. T-rex 28

    It’s failing (which is seized upon by critics) is that it won’t permit service stations to lower prices beyond those that are published by FuelWatch.

    I disagree, I think that’s actually a strength. If stations can react during the day, they can just all start high – there’s no competitive advantage to going low. If, however, you’ve got to stick with what you offer, then it’s a closed tender type arrangement. It’ll deliver far better results for the consumer – just not for the companies who choose to charge high. Where’s the problem?

  28. roger nome 29

    killinginthenameof:

    “How do we know that the oil producing states are not just pulling an enron?”

    What’s far more likely is that OPEC over-estimate their reserves.

    The OPEC countries decided in 1985 to link their production quotas to their reserves. What then seemed wise provoked important increases of the estimates in order to increase their production rights. This also permits the ability to obtain bigger loans at lower interest rates. This is a suspected reason for the reserves rise of Iraq in 1983, then at war with Iran.

    In fact, Dr. Ali Samsam Bakhtiari, a former senior executive of the National Iranian Oil Company, has stated unequivocally that OPEC’s oil reserves (notably Iran’s) are grossly overstated. In an interview to Bloomberg in July 2006, he stated that world oil production is now at its peak and predicted that it will fall 32% by 2020.[50]

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oil_reserves

  29. Rex Widerstrom 30

    T-rex: you have a point. But FuelWatch is effectively massive free advertising for the cheaper servos. So to start high means their published prices, promted via FuelWatch, wouldn’t attract anybody.

    All I can say is it seems to work in WA, where we pay less than the eastern states and about 50c a litre less than NZ.

  30. T-Rex 31

    Rex – yup, I understand that, think it’s a great scheme, I just think it’s also good that they won’t let stations change their price during the day for the reasons I described above.

  31. What have the Kiwiblog crowd got to do with this?

    It is Labour who is building the motorways.

  32. expat 33

    Oh, Helens peak oil is here? Well that settles the argument then. Stop now people, go home. Peak Oil is here.

  33. roger nome 34

    Hey nice argument expat. I notice that nearly all the Tories who used to argue against me when I proposed that peak oil would be within the next 15 years are silent now. That started 3-4 years ago.

    You can start on the road to Damascus here if you like:

  34. The regions that prosper in the Post Cheap Mineral Oil/Gas Age will be those who have invested in intelligent uses of their electrical and solar potential – including rail, shipping and well insulated dwellings. New Zealand has failed to do this and I now rate Michael Cullen the worst Finance Minister in at least 70 years. Previous Finance Ministers can be excused for not understanding the full impacts of our use of mineral oil/gas. However the lessons of the 1970-90s were clearly there by 2000 for anyone with a will to learn. These were spelled out to him in great detail by many people and he just scoffed at them. He inherited a world in 1999 in which the prices of mineral commodities were historically extremely low. This gave him the splendid opportunity to reshape a more sustainable New Zealand and he has sqandered it in motorways, jet travel, SUVs, McMansions etc.
    Now he has surrendered entirely to the Stock Market sector with KiwiSaver, pouring funds into a black hole rather than any of the above mentioned requisites for a sustainable country. The Stock Market is based on the tragic belief that mineral oil will retail at about $US25 for ever and is now set to implode – the implosion being delayed a little by Michael pouring billions of hard-earned dollars of the average Kiwi into the brokers’ pockets to prop them up.

    Dave McA

  35. expat 36

    nome – you are deluded. you and travelerev need to form a support group.

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    4 days ago
  • Immigration Issues.
    Help is comingI heard a whisperWhite caps turningThe breath of summerA distant drummingAnd liar birds callingEscape the anguish of our pastAnd prayOne of the major challenges of the the 21st century will be the mass migration of human beings around our globe.Some seeking economic opportunities, others fleeing repressive regimes, war ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    4 days ago
  • Trust us, we know what we’re doing
    The best trick the National Party ever pulled was to fabricate their reputation as the responsible ones.This would be the National Party that denied us the New Zealand Superannuation Scheme that—Brian Gaynor wrote back in 2007would be worth more than $240 billion today and would have transformed the New Zealand ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    4 days ago
  • The Left’s Timidity
    It is not just Karl Marx – even the most enthusiastic supporters of the market economy (not least Adam Smith) will concede that its normal operation inevitably leads to a concentration of wealth in relatively few hands. Some, at least, of these enthusiasts will accept that such a concentration is ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    5 days ago
  • OLIVER HARTWICH: Absurd – NZ courts can now decide on climate change
    Oliver Hartwich writes – The World Justice Project ranks New Zealand 7th out of 142 countries on its ‘Rule of Law Index’, narrowly ahead of Australia’s 13th place. However, Australia still has hope – if only because of a recent decision by the Supreme Court of New Zealand. The ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    5 days ago
  • Still waiting on that turnaround
    Hello! Here comes the Saturday edition of More Than A Feilding, catching you up on the past week’s editions.Friday: Week in review, quiz style2. Shane Jones’ demeanour in mocking and deriding climate activists can be observed in what other realm of human behaviour?a. Gleeful little boys pulling wings off fliesb. ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    5 days ago
  • Mihi Forbes and the great Atlas conspiracy
    Graham Adams writes — Last week, Mihingarangi Forbes made an extraordinary claim while interviewing David Seymour on Mata Reports, a taxpayer-funded current affairs programme which, she says, looks at events through an “indigenous lens”. She asked him about Act’s links to the Atlas Network, which fosters connections between centre-right ...
    Point of OrderBy gadams1000
    6 days ago
  • Puffing Policy
    Public policy towards tobacco consumption remains politically sensitive. In 1983, a young researcher was told by a medium-level Treasury official that Treasury policy was to abandon excise duties on tobacco. The senior Treasury economist that I consulted, famed for his commonsense, snorted ‘we need the money’. He explained that no-excise-duty ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    6 days ago
  • Luxon is one of three prime ministers pressing for a ceasefire in Gaza – but the two-state solutio...
    Buzz from the Beehive Two days after hundreds of people rallied outside the New Zealand parliament and the US embassy in Wellington to protest against what they maintain is genocide in Gaza,  Prime Minister Chris Luxon joined with the Prime Ministers of Australia and Canada to express their  concerns that ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    6 days ago
  • All jellied up with possum grease
    1. Shane Jones, addressing the energy industry, called climate concern what?a. The only sane responseb. Undeniably valid c. Our last best hope d. A "religion" 2. Shane Jones’ demeanour in mocking and deriding climate activists can be observed in what other realm of human behaviour?a. Gleeful little boys pulling wings off fliesb. Gleeful ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    6 days ago
  • Equality comes to Greece
    The Greek Parliament has voted for marriage equality: Greece has become the first Christian Orthodox-majority country to legalise same-sex marriage. Same-sex couples will now also be legally allowed to adopt children after Thursday's 176-76 vote in parliament. Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said the new law would "boldly abolish a ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • CHRIS TROTTER:  Iron in her soul.
      “Battle not with monsters, lest ye become a monster, and if you gaze into the abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.” – Friedrich Nietzsche   Chris Trotter writes – TELEVISION NEW ZEALAND is to be congratulated for inviting Chloe Swarbrick onto its Q+A current affairs show. The Green MP ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    6 days ago
  • The Hoon around the week to Feb 16
    Net emigration of New Zealanders overseas hit a record-high 47,000 in the 2023 year, which only partly offset net immigration of 173,000, which was dominated by arrivals from India, the Philippines and China with temporary work visas. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The five things that mattered in Aotearoa’s ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Stop Whispering.
    There's nothing to sayAnd there's nothing to doStop whispering, start shoutingStop whispering, start shoutingYesterday our government surprised a few of us by standing up for something. It wasn’t for the benefit of people who own holiday homes and multiple investment properties. Neither were there any tobacco companies or fishing cartels ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • “I'm Not Keen on Whataboutism, But What About…”
    Hi,Not sure how your week is going, but I’ve had a pretty frustrating one. I’ve been trying to put my finger on it, and I think it’s perhaps distilled in this message I got on Twitter:What got me a bit riled up is that it was a response to the ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    6 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on National passing bad policies under urgency
    If National really had faith in its welfare policies, it wouldn’t be ramming them through Parliament under urgency – a step that means the policies can’t be exposed to select committee debate, public submissions, expert commentary, media scrutiny and all the normal democratic processes that this coalition appears to hold ...
    6 days ago
  • Weekly Roundup 16-February-2024
    It’s Friday so once again here”s our roundup of some of the articles that caught our attention this week. This Week in Greater Auckland On Monday Matt looked at the Government’s war on Auckland. On Tuesday Matt covered the ongoing issues with the rail network. On Thursday Matt ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    6 days ago
  • The Dawn Chorus for Friday, February 16
    The six things to note in my view at 6.30 am on Friday, February 16 in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy are: Read more ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Iron In Her Soul.
    “Battle not with monsters, lest ye become a monster, and if you gaze into the abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.” – Friedrich NietzscheTELEVISION NEW ZEALAND is to be congratulated for inviting Chloe Swarbrick onto its Q+A current affairs show. The Green MP for Auckland Central is the odds-on ...
    6 days ago
  • Dig this
    Resources Minister Shane Jones yesterday told a breakfast hosted by Energy Resources Aotearoa precisely what they wanted to hear. “We campaigned to rehabilitate relegitimise and stand up for working families who derive their income,  derive their hope and derive purpose in regional New Zealand through a flourishing, growing, forward-leaning energy ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    6 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #7 2024
    Open access notables Physics-based early warning signal shows that AMOC is on tipping course, van Westen et al., Science Advances: Here, we show results of the first tipping event in the Community Earth System Model, including the large climate impacts of the collapse. Using these results, we develop a physics-based and ...
    7 days ago
  • A rejection of the rule of law
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Shrugging-Off The Atlas Network.
    Upholding The Status-Quo: The Left’s election defeat is not the work of the Atlas Network. It is not even the work of David Seymour and Act. It is the work of ordinary citizens who liked the Right’s stories better than they liked the Left’s. If the Right’s stories were made ...
    7 days ago
  • BARRIE SAUNDERS: Treaty Principles – all rather problematic
    Barrie Saunders writes – When ACT’s leader said they wanted legislation to state what the Treaty principles mean, my first thought was this will be controversial and divisive.  Clearly it is. The first reference to the principles of the Treaty were contained in the 1975 Act establishing the Treaty of ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    7 days ago
  • Luxon Rejects The “Rejection Election” At His Peril.
    Fitting Right In: National retailed a reactionary manifesto of right-wing, racially-charged policies to the electorate throughout 2023. No talk back then of ignoring the overwhelming political preferences of the voting public and making a strong stand on principle. If Luxon’s pollsters and focus-groups were telling him that the public was ...
    7 days ago
  • Valentine’s Day went unnoticed on the Beehive website – but it is not “baa, humbug” to celeb...
    Buzz from the Beehive None of our ministers – a quick check with the Beehive website suggests – found cause to mention, let along celebrate, Valentine’s Day. But two ministers – Agriculture Minister Todd McClay and Rural Communities Minister Mark Patterson – ensured that National Lamb Day did not pass ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    7 days ago
  • Are You A Leftist?
    Nothing To Lose But Our Chains: The emancipatory movement which the Left, understood correctly, has always been, cannot accommodate those who are only able to celebrate one group’s freedom by taking it from another. The expectation, always, among leftists, is that liberty enlarges us. That striking-off a person’s shackles not ...
    7 days ago
  • An unlawful directive
    An interesting question in the Parliamentary written questions feed today, from Jan Tinetti to the Minister of Education: Has she or her Office directed the Ministry of Education to not release Official Information Act material prior to the full twenty working days, if so, why? Given that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • I’ve been doing this all wrong
    Here are six words that are not easy to say but god it can feel good when you finally say them:I’ve been doing this all wrongFive years ago today I said to myself:What if I'm doing this all wrong?Five years ago today I said to Karren: I think I’m going to ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    7 days ago
  • New study suggests the Atlantic overturning circulation AMOC “is on tipping course”
    This is a re-post from RealClimate by Stefan Rahmstorf A new paper was published in Science Advances today. Its title says what it is about: “Physics-based early warning signal shows that AMOC is on tipping course.” The study follows one by Danish colleagues which made headlines last July, likewise looking for early warning signals ...
    7 days ago
  • Drawn
    A ballot for five Member's Bills was held today, and the following bills were drawn: Parole (Mandatory Completion of Rehabilitative Programmes) Amendment Bill (Todd Stephenson) Goods and Services Tax (Removing GST From Food) Amendment Bill (Rawiri Waititi) Income Tax (ACC Payments) Amendment Bill (Hamish Campbell) ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Valentines from ACT.
    Some of us make a big deal out of Valentine’s Day. We’ll buy the flowers, eye watering though the price spike might be. Say the things we should be saying anyway, although diminished by being scheduled for delivery. Some of us will even write long free-form newsletters with declarations of ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Tax cuts paid for by 13k more kids in poverty
    MSD advised the government that the indexation change it passed under urgency last night is likely to put around 7,000 extra children (and potentially up to 13,000) into poverty. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The Government has reverted indexation for main beneficiaries to price inflation from wage inflation under ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • Fuel Tax Fight and Rail Fail update
    The two stories we covered at the start of the week continue to be in the headlines so it’s worth looking at the latest for each of them. Regional Fuel Tax Mayor Wayne Brown promised some ‘argy-bargy’ over the government’s decision to cancel the Regional Fuel Tax and he’s ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Arsonists
    Today, a major fire broke out on the Port Hills in Ōtutahi. Like its 2017 predecessors, it is almost certainly exacerbated by climate change. And it is still burning. The present government did not start the fire. But they piled the tinder high last time they were in power, gutting ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • I don’t know!
    http://en.kremlin.ru/events/president/news/73411 7 examples And who actually makes the decisions? Vladimir Putin: I don’t know. America is a complex country, conservative on the one hand, rapidly changing on the other. It’s not easy for us to sort it all out.   Tucker Carlson: Do you think Zelensky has the freedom to negotiate the settlement to this conflict? Vladimir Putin: I don’t know the details, of course it’s difficult for me to judge, but ...
    1 week ago
  • Fresh thinkers
    Fresh thinking will always give you hope.It might be the kind that makes you smite your brow, exclaiming: Why didn't we think of that! It's obvious!It might be the kind that makes you go: Dude you’re a genius.Sometimes it will simply be Wayne Brown handing Simeon Brown his weasel ass ...
    More than a fieldingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • It is not about age, it is about team.
    Much attention has been directed at Joe Biden’s mental lapses and physical frailty. Less attention has been spent on Donald Trump’s cognitive difficulties and physical limitations, with most focus being devoted to his insults and exaggerated claims (as if they … Continue reading ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago

  • NZ announces new support for Ukraine
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Judith Collins have marked two years since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine by announcing further support and sanctions, and extending our military assistance. “Russia launched its illegal, full-scale invasion of Ukraine, in blatant violation of international law, including the UN Charter,” Mr Peters says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • Finance Minister to meet Australian Treasurer
    Finance Minister Nicola Willis will travel to Australia today to meet her Australian counterpart, Treasurer Jim Chalmers.    “New Zealand and Australia have an incredibly strong trade and investment relationship. The Closer Economic Relations and Single Economic Market are powerful engines for growth on both sides of the Tasman.     “I will ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
  • PM shocked and saddened at death of Efeso Collins
    “I am truly shocked and saddened at the news of Efeso Collins’ sudden death,” Prime Minister Christopher Luxon says. “Efeso was a good man, always friendly and kind, and a true champion and advocate for his Samoan and South Auckland communities. “Our thoughts and deepest sympathies go to his family, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    23 hours ago
  • Greater support for social workers
    The Coalition Government is enhancing the professionalism of the social work sector and supporting the vulnerable people who rely on them, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says.  The Social Workers Registration Legislation Amendment Bill passed its third reading in Parliament today. It amends the Social Workers Registration Legislation ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government delivers greater freedom and choice for sick New Zealanders
    The coalition government is delivering on its commitment to making principled decisions by getting rid of red tape that doesn’t make sense and allowing sick New Zealanders greater freedom and choice to purchase effective cold and flu medicines. A bill amending the Misuse of Drugs Act 1975 is being introduced, and changes to the Medicines ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government begins reset of welfare system
    The Coalition Government is taking early action to curb the surge in welfare dependency that occurred under the previous government by setting out its expectations around employment and the use of benefit sanctions, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says. In 2017, 60,588 sanctions were applied to beneficiaries who ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • State of the Nation
    Ka nui te mihi kia koutou. Kia ora, good morning, talofa, malo e lelei, bula vinaka, da jia hao, namaste, sat sri akal, assalamu alaikum. Thank you for coming to my first State of the Nation as Prime Minister. Thank you for coming to a speech where I don’t just ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • West Coast tourism attractions officially open
    Regional Development Minister Shane Jones will attend the official opening of two highly anticipated tourism projects on the West Coast today – Pike29 Memorial Track, dedicated to the memory of the Pike River miners, and Pounamu Pathway. “The Pike29 Memorial Track is a way to remember and honour the men ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Independent ferry service advisory group in place
    Appointments to the Ministerial Advisory Group tasked with providing independent advice and assurance on the future of KiwiRail’s inter-island ferry service have been made, State Owned Enterprises Minister Paul Goldsmith says. “It’s important for New Zealand that KiwiRail is focused on ensuring safe, resilient, and reliable ferry services over the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Joint statement from the Prime Ministers of Australia, Canada, and New Zealand
    The Prime Ministers of Australia, Canada and New Zealand today issued the following statement on reports of Israel’s planned military operation in Rafah. We are gravely concerned by indications that Israel is planning a ground offensive into Rafah.   A military operation into Rafah would be catastrophic. About 1.5 million Palestinians ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Govt will deliver on expanded breast screening
    The coalition Government has made the first steps in delivering on its promise to  extend free breast screening to women aged 70-74, Health Minister Shane Reti says. “As part of the 100 day plan, the Government has now met with officials and discussed what is needed in order for the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Government announces woolshed roadshows in support of sheep farmers
    The Government celebrates National Lamb Day (15 February 24) and congratulates sheep farmers on the high-quality products they continue to produce. Agriculture Minister McClay hosted bipartisan celebrations of National Lamb Day with industry representatives at Parliament this week to mark the anniversary of the first frozen lamb exports that left ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Speech: Address to the NZ Economics Forum
    It’s great to be back at the New Zealand Economics Forum. I would like to acknowledge everyone here today for your expertise and contribution, especially the Pro Vice-Chancellor, Head of the Waikato Management School, economists, students and experts alike. A year has passed since I was last before you, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government tackling high construction costs
    The Government is focused on reducing sky-high construction costs to make it more affordable to build a home, Building and Construction Minister Chris Penk says.  Stats NZ data shows the cost of building a house has increased by 41 per cent since 2019, making housing even more unaffordable for Kiwi ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Labour’s Three Waters legislation repealed
    The Coalition Government’s legislative plan to address longstanding issues with local water infrastructure and service delivery took an important step today, with the repeal of Labour’s divisive and unpopular Three Waters legislation, Local Government Minister Simeon Brown says. “Repealing this legislation is a necessary first step in implementing our Local ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Cost of living support for beneficiary households
    The Coalition Government is delivering on its commitment to ease the cost-of-living by increasing main benefit rates in line with inflation and ensuring the Minimum Family Tax Credit threshold remains aligned with this change, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says. The Social Security (Benefits Adjustment) and Income Tax ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government announces agriculture delegations to better support Primary sector
    The coalition Government has announced ministerial delegations to support key areas across the Primary sector to deliver for New Zealand’s food and fibre sector, Agriculture Minister Todd McClay announced today. “I will be supported in my roles as Minister of Agriculture, Trade, Forestry and Hunting and Fishing, by three Associate ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Waikato MoU reinforces Govt’s commitment to increase NZ doctors
    The Government has taken an important step forward in addressing a critical shortage of New Zealand-trained doctors, with today’s signing of a Memorandum of Understanding for a third medical school, Minister of Health Dr Shane Reti has announced.  “Today’s signing by the Ministry of Health and the University of Waikato ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Speech – Lunar New Year 2024
    Annyeonghaseyo, greetings and welcome all. It is my pleasure as the Minister for Ethnic Communities to welcome you to the first Lunar New Year Event in Parliament. Thank you to our emcees for greeting us in the different languages that represent the many cultures that celebrate the Lunar New Year. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • More funding to Hawke’s Bay and Tairāwhiti
    Urgent work to clean-up cyclone-affected regions will continue, thanks to a $63 million boost from the Government for sediment and debris removal in Hawke’s Bay and Tairāwhiti.                                                                                                   The funding will help local councils continue urgent work removing and disposing of sediment and debris left from Cyclone Gabrielle.   “This additional ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Budget will be delivered on 30 May
    Plans to deliver tax relief to hard-working New Zealanders, rebuild business confidence and restore the Crown’s finances to order will be unveiled on 30 May, Finance Minister Nicola Willis says. The plans will be announced in the Budget which is currently being developed by Ministers.  “The last government’s mismanagement of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government advances Local Water Done Well
    The Coalition Government is continuing work to restore council ownership and control of water assets by repealing Three Waters and appointing a Technical Advisory Group to provide expert advice on the implementation of Local Water Done Well, Local Government Minister Simeon Brown says. “The Government will pass a bill to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Minister congratulates NZQA Top Scholars
    Education Minister Erica Stanford congratulates the New Zealand Scholarship recipients from 2023 announced today.  “Receiving a New Zealand Scholarship is a fantastic achievement and is a testament to the hard work and dedication the recipients have put in throughout the year,” says Ms Stanford.  “New Zealand Scholarship tests not only ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New diplomatic appointments
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has today announced five new diplomatic appointments.  "Strong and effective diplomacy to protect and advance our interests in the world is needed now more than ever," Mr Peters says.  “We are delighted to appoint senior diplomats from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade to these ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Speech to the Committee for Auckland
    It is great to be here today at this event as Minister for Auckland and Minister ofTransport. Let me start by acknowledging each one of you and thanking the Committee forAuckland for hosting this event and inviting me to speak here today. The Committee for Auckland has been a symbol ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Getting Transport Back on Track in Auckland
    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has today confirmed his high-level transport priorities for Auckland, in the lead up to releasing the draft Government Policy Statement on Land Transport. “Our economic growth and productivity are underpinned by a transport network that enables people and freight to move around safely and efficiently. At ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Government to axe Auckland Regional Fuel Tax
    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has confirmed that the Auckland Regional Fuel Tax will end on 30 June 2024. “Today, I can confirm that the Government has agreed to remove the Auckland Regional Fuel Tax in line with our coalition commitments, and legislation will be introduced to parliament to repeal the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Minister Calls for Work to Tackle Kina Barrens
    Changes to fishing rules and a significant science programme are being undertaken to address kina barrens, says Minister for Oceans and Fisheries Shane Jones. “There has been tremendous interest from iwi, communities and recreational fishers who had raised concerns about such kina infestations being a major threat to Northland’s marine ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Government law and order crackdown begins
    The coalition Government is making good on its promise to restore law and order by removing government funding for Section 27 reports and abolishing the previous Labour Government’s prison reduction target, Justice Minister Paul Goldsmith and Corrections Minister Mark Mitchell say.  “In recent years, the development of Section 27 reports ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Greater focus on getting people into work
    The coalition government will refocus employment efforts and the welfare system so that supporting people who can work into jobs is the number one priority, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says. “Of concern in the labour market statistics released by Stats NZ today was the number of youth not ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • One year on, NZ appeals for release of Phillip Mehrtens
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has appealed to those holding New Zealand pilot Phillip Mehrtens in remote Papua, Indonesia, to release him immediately.  Phillip Mehrtens was taken hostage a year ago on 7 February in Paro, Papua, while providing vital air links and supplies to remote communities. “We strongly urge those holding ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Ministers reaffirm Pacific connections this week
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters and Health Minister and Minister for Pacific Peoples Dr Shane Reti are reaffirming the importance of New Zealand’s connections to the Pacific by visiting Tonga, Cook Islands and Samoa this week.  “New Zealand enjoys strong and long-standing relationships with our Pacific partners - especially in Polynesia, where we ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Rt Hon Christopher Luxon – Waitangi speech
    E ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā iwi, rau rangatira ma. Tēnā koutou katoa. He tino mihi ki te mana whenua o tēnei rohe.  Mihi mai, mihi mai, mihi mai. Te whare e tū nei, tēnā koe.                               He-wāhi whakahirahira tēnei mō Aotearoa. Ka huri nga whakaaro, ki nga mate. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Government awards primary sector scholarships to students
    Six university students studying agriculture and science have been awarded scholarships as part of the coalition Government’s efforts to boost on-the-ground support for farmers and growers. “The coalition Government is committed to improving support and operating conditions for farmers and growers,” Agriculture Minister Todd McClay says. “We’re backing a range ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • High Court Judge appointed
    Attorney-General Judith Collins today announced the appointment of Wellington Barrister Jason Scott McHerron as a High Court Judge. Justice McHerron graduated from the University of Otago with a BA in English literature in 1994 and an LLB in 1996. From 1996 to 1999 he worked as a solicitor in the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago
  • New Zealand provides further humanitarian support to Gaza and the West Bank
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced that New Zealand is providing a further $5 million to respond to the extreme humanitarian need in Gaza and the West Bank.  “The impact of the Israel-Hamas conflict on civilians is absolutely appalling,” Mr Peters says.  “That is why New Zealand has contributed $15 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago

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