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Sustainable Energy Forum: Papers and Submissions ARCHIVE

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Available as:


September 2009

Sustainable Energy Forum submission on the Ministerial Review of the Electricity Market

Ministerial review of the electricity market improving electricity market performance discussion documents submission to the ministry of economic development, 16 september 2009.




PDF (~413KB)

August 2009

An Open Letter to the Minister of Transport

The Sustainable Energy Forum calls for a transport policy rethink in the light of the International Energy Agency's latest oil supply warnings.




PDF (~26KB)

July 2009

Submission to Minister of Energy, on proposals for introduction of "smart meters"

DEUN and SEF call for a moratorium on the installation of "smart meters" until electricity retailers agree on how to make them really smart.




PDF (~390KB)

July 2009

Submission on the RUC Amendment

SEF's submission regarding the RUC Amendment.




PDF (~344KB)

December 2008

Briefing to the Incoming Government

SEF's briefing to the incoming National-led Government on energy and transport issues.




Word (~57KB)

PDF (~93KB)

22 July 2008

Over a Barrel - a new vision needed

This article, first published in the Dominion Post on Monday 21 July 2008, suggests how New Zealand should respond to continuing how oil prices, and the threat of further oil price rises and supply restrictions.




PDF (~7KB)

29 February 2008

Sustainable Transport Submission

SEF submission on the Ministry of Transport's "Sustainable Transport" discussion document. This document is part of the process of updating the New Zealand Transport Strategy.




PDF (~662KB)

6 February 2008

Transport, Oil and Climate Change: Agenda 2008

A briefing paper sent to political parties about transport issues, and their context, heading into the 2008 General Election.




PDF (~554KB)

31 January 2008

SEF submission on the Biofuels Bill.

Also available is the Appendix to the submission.




PDF (~454KB)

10 November 2007

The Future of Oil.

Oil prices have grown strongly since 2004, and recently spiked over US $90 per barrel. Speculation, international politics, exchange rate changes, and the risk of terrorism and war have all played a part. But the basic reason is that world oil production has not grown since 2006, while demand continues to increase.

This article was first published by the Dominion Post on Friday 2 November 2007.




PDF (~12KB)

15 July 2007

SEF Submission on proposed changes to the Building Code and Compliance Documents on energy efficiency of hot water systems and HVAC systems.

This submission has been prepared by the Sustainable Energy Forum (SEF) and comments on the proposed changes to hot water systems. SEF is a broad organisation. This submission is the result of discussion amongst members and reflects a consensus. However it may not necessarily take into account the views of every member.

SEF supports the concept of applying a standard to a whole design rather than just to individual components, although, in some cases, better component standards are also required.




PDF (~488KB)

3 April 2007

Submission on the Government’s Energy and Climate Change Policy Documents

SEF’s submission on the Government’s suite of energy and climate change policy documents focuses on the draft New Zealand Energy Strategy (NZES) and New Zealand Energy Efficiency and Conservation Strategy (NZEECS), but also covers the relationship between energy policy, land use, and climate change.




PDF (~386KB)

10 March 2007

Report on the Sustainable Energy Forum / Energy Federation of New Zealand Seminar on Government Energy Policy, 16 February 2007.

This report contains material which may be useful to those preparing submissions on the Government's suite of energy policy documents. As long as the authorship of the presentations is acknowledged, you are welcome to use material from this report in your submission. The presentations to this event are also available online (on the Energy Federation web site).




Word (~67KB)

PDF (~145KB)

19 December 2006

Peak Oil: A Major Issue for New Zealand

The peak in world conventional oil production is fast approaching, and New Zealand isn’t ready for it. In this document, the SEF Transport and Oil Working Group recommends policies the Government should adopt to meet the challenge of Peak Oil, and also suggests measures that individuals can take to prepare for it. (This is a revised and updated version of our document “Peak Oil: An Urgent Issue for New Zealand”, from July 2005.)




PDF (~60KB)

9 November 2006

SEF Response to MED Discussion paper Options for Government Response to an Oil Supply Disruption

This SEF submission highlights the way in which many responses proposed to deal with a short-term oil supply disruption could also be valuable to reduce our present high dependence on oil for transport.




PDF (~45KB)

29 August 2006

New Thinking Needed on Land Transport

A SEF delegation put forward this presentation when meeting with Minister of Transport Hon Annette King on 5 July 2006 to discuss the state and future of land transport in New Zealand.




PDF (~113KB)

14 August 2006

SEF response to the Terms of Reference for the New Zealand Energy Strategy

The Ministry of Economic Development recently released the Terms of Reference for the New Zealand Energy Strategy. This is SEF's response to the Ministry's Key Questions about the development of the NZES.




PDF (~47KB)

2 March 2006

SEF Submission on the Climate Change Policy Review.

This SEF submission to the Minister for Climate Change Issues, Hon. David Parker, is in response to the recent Cabinet Climate Change Policy Review paper. The Cabinet paper (January 2006) can be viewed at and the Review to which it refers (November 2005) at




PDF (~70KB)

20 October 2005

New Zealand's Response to Peak Oil: Land Transport.

The peak in world oil production is fast approaching, and New Zealand is a long way from being prepared for it. This SEF report looks at the changes we need to make to New Zealand’s land transport system to mitigate and adapt to the impacts of the end of the era of cheap, readily-available oil.




PDF (~91KB)

4 September 2005

A Framework for a Sustainable Energy Future for New Zealand.

Members of the Sustainable Energy Forum, through their email discussion group, have called for the development of a framework to assist SEF in presenting the concepts and actions needed to build a sustainable energy future for New Zealand.

This framework, developed by a small group of SEF members, is only a starting point for a more comprehensive document. It offers objectives, a brief SWOT type analysis, and suggested actions to improve New Zealand’s energy sustainability.  It also outlines some barriers to effective action, and foreshadows further work on indicators, modelling to monitor progress towards energy sustainability, and research needs.  The framework shows the interrelationships between various measures and actions.

We want your input so that it can continue to be improved!  Please send your comments to the SEF Office:




PDF (~86KB)

22 July 2005

SEF Submission on the Electricity Commission’s discussion paper “Options for Enabling Transmission Alternatives”.

The central issue of the EC consultation document was whether alternatives to proposed transmission upgrades can be counted on to eventuate in the present “market” environment, and whether the EC should “procure” the alternatives directly or indirectly. This SEF submission concludes that a mix of “enabling transmission alternatives”, as well as pricing methodology and market design are needed to ensure a proper balance of risk between competing suppliers of the relevant energy services..




PDF (~38KB)

16 May 2005

SEF submission on Electricity Commission Appropriation 2005 / 2006.




PDF (~35KB)

March 2005

MoT - Surface Transport Costs and Charges overview.



PDF (~426KB)

MoT - Surface Transport Costs and Charges Main Report.



PDF (~2.2MB)

18 February 2005

SEF submission on the Oil Security Final Report from the MED.




PDF (~18KB)

SEF submission on the Budget Policy Statement 2005.



PDF (~16KB)

SEF backgrounder which accompanied the submission on the Budget Policy Statement 2005.



PDF (~54KB)

20 August 2004

Submission from SEF to MED regarding the proposed extension of the Electricity Levy to cover reserve generation and energy efficiency.

Mentioned in the submission are four supporting documents, two are available as links and two are available for download below:

Dimensions of Demand Response: Capturing Customer Based Resources in New England's Power Systems and Markets

Report and Recommendations of the New England Demand Response Initiative

July 23, 2003

Retail-Load Participation in Competitive Wholesale Electricity Markets

Eric Hirst and Brendan Kirby, January 2001

Prepared for Edison Electric Institute, and Project for Sustainable FERC Energy Policy.

The convergence of retail competition, wholesale competition, and improved technologies should greatly expand the type and magnitude of price-responsive demand. Permitting and encouraging retail customers to respond to dynamic prices will improve economic efficiency, discipline market power, improve reliability, and reduce the need to build new generation and transmission facilities.




PDF (~109KB)

All demand-side resources are not created equal

The importance of public policies for energy efficiency in reducing energy intensity.

Presentation to E-Vision 2002 by Martin Kushler.



PDF (~24KB)

Strategic Plan for the IEA Demand-Side Management Programme 2004 - 2009

DSM was once an instrument for governments to use to require utilities to move towards a least-cost energy system and to enhance overall use of resources. Environmental concerns, global climate change and grid reliability and security have become important market and policy issues and are expected to grow in importance in the next five years. Working on the demand side is as important as ever but there is a definite need to consider with whom and how.


PDF (~118KB)

12 March 2004

Submission on Resource Consent Application CRC031800
Project Aqua, lodged by Meridian Energy Ltd

Mentioned in the submission are four supporting documents, two are available as links and two are available for download below:



PDF (~19KB)

30 December 2003

Give Priority to Links that Keep Traffic Out of Town.

An article by John Blakeley that appeared in the New Zealand Herald on 30 December 2003.

John Blakeley comments on an article in the NZ Herald suggesting that the Government's plan will only lead to more congestion on Auckland's streets.




PDF (~13kB)

15 December 2003

SEF Submission on the Walking and Cycling Strategy.

... The Forum sees 'Getting There' as an important contribution to this Government's transport policy development. Walking and cycling are both important short-distance transport modes in their own right. Walking in particular is an essential supportive mode for public transport, although cycling can also contribute. Both modes have important health benefits. ...




PDF (~13kB)

December 2003

Spare Power Plant Not Best Answer.

An article by John Blakeley that appeared in the New Zealand Herald on 6 November 2003.

This year the Government announced plans to build a 155MW oil-fired power station at Whirinaki in Hawke's Bay at a cost of $150 million "to help provide increased certainty of electricity supply".

Alternative sites in the South Island had been explored but Whirinaki was chosen, although it is not ideally located, because it has a resource consent and can be operating by next winter. ...




PDF (~12kB)

31 October 2003

SEF Submission on the Building Bill.


SEF submission supports the inclusion of environmentally sustainable development features in buildings.




PDF (~18kB)

2 October 2003

Achieving a sustainable energy future.

An editorial by John Blakeley that appeared in the Sept/Oct issue of Magazine (the journal of IPENZ, the Institution of Professional Engineers New Zealand).


In summary, there are a whole range of possibilities to help secure a sustainable energy future for New Zealand and we need to start navigating our way through these possibilities starting right now. All that is required is some leadership.




PDF (~52kB)

31 July 2003

Sustainable Energy Forum Submission to the Commerce Select Committee Inquiry into the New Zealand Electricity Industry.


SEF is concerned that the Electricity Commission's decisions may have a very negative impact on sustainable energy options. The submission contends that:

  • Planning for generating capacity development needs to be done with caution to avoid surplus generating capacity which would crowd out renewable distributed generation options and energy efficiency investments.
  • Sustainable energy options provide the most economic way to improve environmental sustainability and reliability in New Zealand's electricity sector.




PDF (~76kB)

30 June 2003

SEF Submission on Electricity Commission & Reserve Generation Proposal.


This submission from SEF calls on Government not to commit investment funds for Reserve Generation capacity or fuel storage until the potential for such investment to economically "crowd out" small-scale generation and demand-side management is fully assessed.

It also expresses concern about the intention that the proposed Electricity Commission, as a Crown Agent, will be required to give effect to Government policy, without the degree of independence that would be seen in the Independent Crown Entity that almost everybody believed was the intended model.




PDF (~32kB)

MS Word (~47kB)

13 June 2003

"Small is Sustainable" by Molly Melhuish


This presentation describes how small-scale and sustainable energy options can improve the reliability of New Zealand's electricity supply, as well as giving the well known environmental benefits. It then discusses the Government's May 20th decisions regarding the new Electricity Commission and its role in providing "Reserve Capacity" in the electricity market. The presentation discusses the new barriers that these decisions raise to prevent distributed energy resources and new renewable energy generation from helping relieve 'dry-year' energy shortages.




PDF (~200kB)

PPT (~84kB)

15 May 2003




The present deeply flawed wholesale electricity market structure needs an extensive overhaul if New Zealand is to move towards a sustainable energy future. The expected government announcement of changes to help ensure a sufficient reserve supply of electricity for dry years will inevitably be a "quick fix" to an immediate problem, but in the longer term, much broader changes to the wholesale electricity market are required.

This paper has been prepared for the Sustainable Energy Forum by John Blakeley (SEF Convenor), Molly Mellhuish and Steve Goldthorpe after extensive discussion and contributions from other people participating through the SEF members email discussion group.




PDF (~41kB)

20 December 2002

Big Rethink Needed on Electricity

An article by John Blakeley that appeared in the New Zealand Herald on 20 December 2002.





8 October 2002

Molly Melhuish's paper presented at the Energy Conference. End-use energy options for a reliable electricity supply.


The New Zealand electricity market shuts out energy efficiency, demand management and small scale renewable energy generation. These are the most cost effective ways to counter the market power of large generators and to improve system reliability. This paper describes these aspects and makes positive suggestions for the future.




PDF (~235kB)

PPT (~140kB)

13 June 2002

SEF's submission on the discussion document Climate Change — the government's preferred policy package.



PDF (~30kB)

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