Transitioning to a low emissions economy

Industry Perspectives
We have 22 and a half years to completely decarbonise, to be carbon neutral. There should be no complacency; we have no time left.

Will Steffen, Emeritus Professor, The Australian National University

Transitioning to a low emissions economy from Vector Limited on Vimeo Thanks to the University of Auckland for video footage of Will Steffen. 

In New Zealand, as across the world, we all have a role to play in transitioning to a low emissions economy. The good news is the transition has already started; the bad news is there is not much time left.

Vector views the energy sector as having a key role in leading an accelerated push to decarbonise our economy.  New Zealand’s electricity generation is over 80 percent renewable already, yet renewable is not the same as low carbon. Activity in and around the sector offers significant opportunity for decarbonisation. 

Through harnessing new technology, businesses can provide more information, choice and control to customers and enable them to make their own decisions around energy use and impacts on carbon emissions. 
 
Our role is to provide people the opportunities to engage in smarter solutions to decarbonise their energy use

Simon Mackenzie, Vector Chief Executive Officer

While this is being driven by the need to decarbonise our economy, the mechanism to achieve it will be in providing products and solutions that customers will choose to use –a range of options that make sense to individuals based on their personal priorities.

Vector is taking a leadership stance on decarbonisation with a commitment to achieve net zero emissions by 2030.  Addressing carbon emissions is one part of a broader focus on contributing to the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals. 

Vector believes that if we are smart as a nation and embrace, rather than resist, technology we could set the bar for emissions reduction and make a statement, as significant as our anti-nuclear stance, about truly moving the dial in net zero carbon generation.
 
If businesses are waiting for really clear signals from consumers then those businesses will miss the boat

Abbie Reynolds, Executive Director of the Sustainable Business Council

More about this topic


Will Steffen is an Emeritus Professor of earth system science at the Australian National University, Canberra and a Senior Fellow at the Stockholm Resilience Centre. 
As a guest in New Zealand of Vector and the Sustainable Business Council, Will spoke to students, business and government in Christchurch, Wellington and Auckland about what must be done to limit global warming and transform New Zealand to a low carbon economy. 

The Anthropocene: a presentation by Will Steffen (Sustainable Business Council)
Short Takes: Will Steffen on living with climate change (University of Auckland)