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Dear Sir Robert

  • August 29th, 2008

Dear Sir Robert

I like your column in today’s DomPost.  You are of course insightful beyond all imagining.

But I wish I’d been able to nominate beforehand which one of my passions you’d praise, because I do not quite deserve it in relation to nuclear power.

I do speak plainly. I did answer a question in a Wellington flat by suggesting the first nuclear station would go in Auckland, but it was intended to raise the laugh which followed, at Auckland’s expense.

I share the view of  eminent overseas green thinkers, that most countries will have no choice but nuclear power if the world is to have any hope of reducing greenhouse gas emissions. But I know enough about the electricity industry to be aware that it will be a very long time, if ever, before nuclear power is economic here.

If any country can rely on sun, rain, wind and tide it will be New Zealand. So I have no difficulty in affirming [Gerry Brownlee’s dismissal of nuclear power stations]. They are not likely for New Zealand in the foreseeable future.



  • Georgia
  • August 29th, 2008
  • 9:26 pm

Britain is going through the same contortions. Jeremy Clarkson describes it well:

  • Colleen
  • August 30th, 2008
  • 12:04 am

I agree the article was good, and as you said `insightful beyond imagining’- so assume this also means you agree with the article saying that National has never been a party of change but is full of conservative careerists, while Labour is the party responsible for the most significant reforms the country has seen, and remains a hotbed of ideas.

[Colleen a gotcha for you, though I suspect you recognise over the top flattery as self-referring parody]


So I have no difficulty in affirming National’s policy of not changing our legislation affecting nuclear power stations.

The Greens may some day be the first to demand that the law be changed, whether or not nuclear power is economically sensible.

You’re confirming National won’t be changing the Resource Management Act?

I thought that was quite a big plank – the process it entails is all that legislatively stands in the way of a nuclear power plant. Our anti-nuclear legislation is about weapons and ships, not it nor any other piece of legislation precludes a nuclear power plant being built in NZ

[Good catch Graeme. The anouncements did relate to the 1986 legislation, and it does not cover non-military nuclear devices. I should have referred to Gerry Brownlee’s dismissal of plans for nuclear power. I’ll correct that but your comment will record it for posterity]

  • jcuknz
  • September 2nd, 2008
  • 9:09 am

Since we have plenty of wind,water, and tidal resources un-tapped there is absolutely no need or justification for nuclear power to further polute the world.

  • Anabase
  • September 2nd, 2008
  • 1:46 pm

Really Stephen I am surprised at you

Is there any proof that this global warming bullshit is anything other than a leftist rort designed to get their hands on the money of others?

  • Paul Williams
  • September 3rd, 2008
  • 5:38 pm

Anabase asks an important question Stephen, are you a climate change skeptic? Do you think all those scientists have faked the evidence? That the warming is endogenous and will self correct?

There’s been a few stories suggesting that you’re thinking on key policy issues is not entirely in-line with Nationals. The difficulty with this is we can’t know as there’s so little policy released. However, given your recent conversion to National, is your alignment as partial as appears to have been suggested by Sir Robert?

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