Monday, July 05, 2021

Good riddance to Marsden Point

From Stuff this morning, it looks like the closure of Marsden Point is a done deal:

Shareholders in Refining NZ will vote on August 6 on whether to close the country’s only refinery, at Marsden Point in Northland, and switch instead to importing pre-refined fuels.


The result of the shareholder vote appears a foregone conclusion.

Z Energy and BP, which together own just over 25 per cent of Refining NZ, have agreed in principle to the import model.

Discussions are still continuing with Mobil, which holds a 17 per cent stake in Refining NZ, but it is not understood to be lobbying for refining to continue.

That's still only 42%. But with the big shareholders all on-side, it doesn't look like the refinery has much of a future.

The Climate Change Commission looked at the refinery closure in its emissions budget risk scenarios, and estimated the total impact at a million tons of carbon a year, so the quicker we're rid of it, the better. As for the jobs, the article gives a figure of 240 direct job losses, while earlier ones say about a thousand. But even then, at the government's internal carbon price of $150 a ton, we're basicly paying $150,000 a year to subsidise these jobs, which seems like an absurdly high figure. But if we're concerned about a just transition, spending some fraction of that on creating new, emissions free jobs in Northland for these people to do seems justified.