INDEPENDENT NEWS

Farmers Urged To Conserve Electricity

Published: Wed 1 Aug 2001 09:58 AM
Federated Farmers of New Zealand President, Alistair Polson today encouraged all farmers to take heed of the urgent need to cut back electricity usage.
"Whilst most farmers, like most domestic consumers, are not directly affected by the high spot prices any suggestion of power shortages at the peak of the irrigation and meat and dairy processing season is of great concern," said Mr Polson. The impacts of substantial power shortages on the economy should not be underestimated."
"Electricity conservation is a must but some hard questions need to be asked as to how well the electricity market is working. The Federation, as a member of a Consumer Coalition of energy users known as CC 93, has been participating in the Electricity Governance Establishment Process but has become increasingly concerned that the broader public interest is not been adequately protected throughout this process."
"Farmers are severely exposed to the monopoly rent seeking activities of some of the electricity lines companies," said Mr Polson "but I hope, that with the passage of the Electricity Industry Bill, the Commerce Commission will now take a closer look at the lines companies."
"The government must now undertake an urgent review of the way the electricity market is performing and take corrective action if significant economic impacts are to be avoided."
ENDS

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