Refining NZ have this morning confirmed that around 100 jobs will be cut as the first part of its Strategic Review
concludes, but FIRST Union says that it isn’t too late to save more jobs, assets and infrastructure while transitioning
to cleaner and greener operations if the Government are serious about a Just Transition for Marsden Point.
"Today’s announcement represents the first confirmed job losses on the way to a possible importing model for the
refinery, where operations would refocus on bringing fuel through from overseas rather than refining it in Northland at
Marsden Point," said Justin Wallace, FIRST Union organiser.
"It’s also a warning sign that the company and producers really are serious about going down this track, which I know
many workers think would be a disaster and a missed opportunity to partner with the Government on a sustainable future
that kept the community alive."
"There has been real interest in a range of cleaner and greener energy proposals like biofuels and green hydrogen, and
there are opportunities on the horizon to redeploy existing assets - we shouldn’t lose them now."
Marsden Point was also highlighted in the Wood Fibre Futures Stage One report
as potentially important infrastructure in a domestic fuel industry based on wood fibre that could be exported
"One of those existing assets is the workforce at Marsden Point, which is made up of highly-skilled New Zealanders who
have expert knowledge in science and technology."
"No one is under any illusion - the sun is setting on fossil fuels, and the Covid-19 pandemic has altered market demand
for aviation and other fuels. It’s inevitable that things need to change at Marsden Point immediately."
"But now is the time to be brave and invest in these communities rather than cut jobs and give in to what we assume is
"Now is the time to live up to the rhetoric of climate change being an opportunity as well as a disaster, because that
is precisely the situation at Marsden Point right now - it’s not too late."
Putting Workers First
FIRST Union is New Zealand's second-largest private sector trade union.
Formed in 2011 after the merger between the National Distribution Union and Finsec, FIRST Union represents 27,000
workers in the Finance, Industrial (Textile and Wood), Retail, Stores, Transport and Logistics sectors.
FIRST Union is also affiliated to the New Zealand Council of Trade Unions and runs several networks including the Union
Network of Migrants, the Runanga, Fono and Womens' Committee. In 2015 FIRST Union launched Samoa First Union, Samoa's
only private sector union.
Join FIRST Union today for higher pay, better conditions and more say at work.