Monday, October 15, 2007

New Zealand to Ban Coal, Gas Fired Power Plants

From Bloomberg:

New Zealand electricity producers, including Contact Energy Ltd., will face a 10-year ban on the construction of new gas- or coal-fired generators to help the nation meet its Kyoto Protocol emission reduction targets.

The measures may affect NZ$1 billion ($760 million) of investment in two projects planned by Contact and government- owned Genesis Power Ltd. State-owned generators will be barred from building new gas-fired plants, and a decision on whether to extend the ban to Contact and other private generators will be made this year, Energy Minister David Parker said today.

New Zealand already produces about 70 percent of its power from non-polluting wind, hydro-electric and geothermal generators. The government wants to raise that to 90 percent by 2025 and is blocking construction of cheaper gas-fired power stations to speed investment in wind turbines and steamfields....MORE