Friday, October 7, 2011

Sinking Ship Reveals Flaw In Energy Strategy

Dear Sir

The National led Government have thrown all their weight behind oil and lignite mining as their way to make New Zealand prosperous. In their recently published Energy Strategy they state:
 “The Government wants New Zealand to be a highly attractive global destination for petroleum exploration and production investment so we can develop the full potential of our petroleum resources."

When the Brazilian oil company, Petrobras, was drilling off our coast the Green Party asked for assurances around environmental protections and were told that it is Maritime New Zealand’s responsibility, not the company, who would have to manage any oil spill. Our ability to manage an oil leak from a wrecked ship does not fill me with confidence and when I think of the lack of planning behind the government’s energy strategy, I too am experiencing a sinking feeling.

Yours sincerely

2 comments:

KjT said...

The oil spill equipment in New Zealand would struggle to deal with a spill of 500 tons in calm water.

As Deepwater Horizon has shown, even with all the gear and money in the world a major spill from a well is not solvable after it has happened.

The only credible way of preventing oil spill damage is to make sure they do not happen in the first instance.

High standards of safety, personnel competence, training, equipment and professionalism are the only way to prevent spills.

Unfortunately shipping companies are the first to try and cut these to get costs down. Encouraged by compliant Governments and regulators, like ours!

bsprout said...

Also, KjT, New Zealand does not have the expertise or staff to evaluate and monitor the standards of any international drilling company. I can imagine that while we are still dealing with the leaking buildings debacle created by a previous National government we will soon have to deal with leaking oil as a consequence of this government.

Health, safety and the environment don't figure highly with National when you consider their complicity as regards coal mining deaths, polluted rivers and our shocking child health statistics.

New Zealand isn't regarded as one of the easiest countries to do business in for nothing.