Kudos to the NZ Maori party. It seems they are the only political party in New Zealand (including the Green Party who response has been little more than lip service so far) who have the sense and backbone to speak out about Peak Oil in the tone it deserves.
Press Release: http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA0506/S00557.htm
'Waking up to Peak Oil'
Thursday 23 June 2005
"It is about time the Government woke up to the approaching energy crisis” stated Tariana Turia today.
"The Maori Party raised the issue about preparing a range of options to respond to Peak Oil on 4 May 2005" stated Mrs Turia. "We were concerned that the isolation of Aotearoa* from oil reserves must lead us to take a serious look at the way that our future is planned in relation to energy and gas consumption".
"We are concerned that soaring oil prices are set to increase the cost of living with the impact felt across the whole economy. We know also that the 6 cents a litre price increase will not only affect transportation costs".
"It is hard to believe that twenty years ago, the average nominal price for domestic crude oil was only $24.09 compared to today’s prices of $43.26".
"The building of new roads in major cities, creating huge cost to the tax payers, is attractive only to the road builders and car salespeople".
"The future for transportation around the country is in more efficient systems being designed, and investing in the environmental future of Aotearoa. The development of commercial rail services must also be seriously researched".
"Yesterday in the House, I asked the Minister of Energy to describe what strategy does the Government have in place to inform the public of the issues related to oil dependence, and what risk management strategies are being developed to reduce the impact of peak oil?"
The Minister's exact response was that there is still "debate over when peak oil will occur".
"The time for debate is over. International energy experts predicted price spikes as an indication that we are near Peak Oil production. Those who know the truth, anticipate the results of Peak Oil becoming a Long Emergency".
"We can expect marked increases in the cost of food, due to price hikes of fertilisers, pesticides, heating, processing and transportation to your local supermarket".
"The Government must wake up to the immediacy of this crisis. Reducing our dependence upon oil needs to be addressed through reduction, replacement and elimination immediately. It’s not just the cost to run our cars" stated Mrs Turia", it’s the 500,000 everyday items that are made from oil".
Ko tenei te wa: the time for action is now.
(*For readers overseas, Aotearoa is the Maori name for New Zealand, meaning 'land of the long white cloud')
I couldn't agree more. The comment by the minister that there is still "debate over when peak oil will occur" is true, and debate will continue until well after the hubbert peak. If we look at the example of the US oil peak (1970-71) there was heated debate until several years after the peak. Only then could everyone agree that the US had peaked in oil production as a nation, because by then (and only then) it was obvious. Debate will continue over world production peak, until it is obvious, and by then it will be to late to prepare mere survival will be much more difficult. Prevention is the answer, not the treatment of symptoms.