Energy savings campaign launched

Media statement from Hon Gerry Brownlee, Minister of Energy and Resources

A high profile television campaign has been launched to help New Zealanders increase the energy efficiency of their homes and businesses, Energy and Resources Minister Gerry Brownlee announced today.

The new prime time campaign, called The Energy Spot, will screen three nights a week (Sunday, Monday and Tuesday) at 6.50pm, on four television channels, as well as 13 other times during the week.

The Energy Spot will cover a range of topics of interest to households and businesses, from insulating houses to efficient driving choices, renewable energy options, building design, and more.

"New Zealand households spend about $3.5 billion on energy each year. For our businesses, the figure is close to $13.5 billion a year. There are massive savings to be made from using our energy more efficiently," said Energy and Resources Minister Gerry Brownlee.

Research by the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority (EECA) shows many New Zealanders are keen to reduce their energy usage but are unsure how to do so.

"This new campaign will give large numbers of people clear, practical information to help them make the most of the energy they use both at home and at work," Mr Brownlee said.

"As well as saving money, using our energy more wisely improves the health and comfort of our homes, makes for more competitive businesses, protects our environment and reduces our carbon emissions," he said.

"We want these spots to demonstrate simple no-cost or low-cost actions New Zealanders can take right now to save energy, which benefit both them and the country."

"For example, if just one out of ten households who watch the show avoid leaving appliances on standby, the country would save over $10 million or enough electricity to run over 5,000 homes a year," said Mr Brownlee.

"Thanks to the success of the insulation campaign we're already running, more New Zealanders are conscious of the benefits they can get from energy efficiency, both in terms of their health and comfort, and also cutting energy wastage.

"This campaign will build on that success and encourage more New Zealanders to take advantage of the savings that are available to them right now," he said.

The Energy Spot was launched by Mr Brownlee in the Beehive today. The spots start screening on October 4th and the campaign is being delivered by the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority (EECA).

Facts and figures:

The Energy Spot campaign is costing $4 million dollars to run over the next 12 months. Further details of how to make energy savings will be available on the ENERGYWISEâ„¢ website.

EECA estimates that each household can easily save 10% on their electricity bills by taking a few simple steps. That works out to savings of about $200 per household, or $320 million in savings each year across the whole country.

Reducing our electricity generation by 10% equates to a reduction of 760,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions every year. Assuming a future carbon charge of $25 a tonne, this is worth $19 million to the economy.

An average household spends about $2,200 a year on transport fuel. By using a few simple driving and maintenance tips, people can reduce this by about 20%.

Reducing our consumption of transport fuels by just 10% equates to a reduction of almost 1.5 million tonnes greenhouse gas emissions per year, worth $37 million to the economy.

Most businesses can save between 10 and 20% of their energy costs. Across all businesses, that adds up to between $1.35 and $2.7 billion every year that could be going to the bottom line.