2 December 2020 – The Government’s commitment to require its agencies to purchase electric vehicles for their fleets is a welcome tangible step towards New Zealand’s decarbonisation ambitions, says Mercury chief executive Vince Hawksworth.

“This positive announcement is an important signal. It will edge New Zealand further towards the tipping point for transport electrification,” Mr Hawksworth said in response to the Government’s announcement today.

“Transport electrification is New Zealand’s greatest opportunity for decarbonisation. Businesses have been transitioning their fleets and the Government is making the change, but much more remains to be done if New Zealand is to progress towards its target of net zero carbon emissions by 2050.

“Our hope is that this is the catalyst for further action; our belief is that it will be. Further urgent action is needed.”

Mercury supports:

• the implementation of vehicle emissions and/or fuel efficiency standards as a priority;

• a ‘clean car’ feebate scheme (a rebate on the purchase price of an electric vehicle funded by fees added to

the price of less efficient vehicles) as a method to more quickly reduce the cost of electric vehicles relative

to internal combustion powered vehicles, and

• a ban on fossil fuel used vehicle imports as soon as possible to avoid New Zealand establishing itself

further as the dumping ground for old, inefficient vehicles that other countries won’t allow on their roads.


“The transition to electric forms of transport will benefit our air quality. It will also increase demand for secure, renewable sources of energy that will encourage the investment needed to move the country towards the Government’s 100% renewable electricity target,” Mr Hawksworth said.



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