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Restricting the production of fossil fuels in Aotearoa New Zealand: A note on the ban on new petroleum permits outside onshore Taranaki

30 March 2020

Bernard Spragg, Flickr

In 2018, the New Zealand Government decided not to grant any new petroleum prospecting, exploration and mining permits outside onshore Taranaki.

The decision, which is effectively a ban, does not affect any existing permits or prevent the government from granting new permits for onshore Taranaki.

When the ban was announced, limited analysis was offered and the stakeholder consultation process was truncated. 

The aim of this note is to extend the existing analysis by providing an assessment of what we know about the environmental effectiveness and likely economic impacts of the ban.

It does not attempt to advocate for or against the ban.

Its intention, rather, is to promote a better-informed debate about its relative merits given that there is cross-party support for the global temperature goals of the Paris Agreement and New Zealand’s 2050 target under the Climate Change Response Act.