Thinking About Tomorrow

A clean green future for everyone     [Home]

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Gas-fired power station is short-sighted and environmentally unsound

This is a letter to the editor of the New Zealand Herald.

What a great front page story you ran today (Tuesday 2nd August) regarding the possibility of building a gas fired power station in Auckland city to stave off our hunger pangs for electric energy. This idea is short-sighted, ethically dubious, and environmentally unsound - all in one.
It is generally acknowledged that the reserves of natural gas in this country, and petroleum deposits worldwide, are running out. Given the law of supply and demand it seems safe to assume that the spiralling prices that the shortfall in supply will engender will rapidly make this power station uneconomically expensive to fuel.
Even beyond this there should be grave concerns about this country involving itself even deeper in the reprehensible struggle for the remaining gas (and oil) that the planet has to offer. Just look at what the world is coming to, war, bombings, poverty and famine. The first justified by any means available to secure access to oil, the second in response to the first and the others largely ignored because there is no oil in the countries where these events are occurring.
New Zealand has abundant possibilities for generating energy from renewable and environmentally friendly sources, why on Earth would we go down a route towards using more fossil fuels?

- Revel Drummond is a Research Scientist at HortResearch, Mt Albert, Auckland.