The energy physical stock account provides estimates of physical quantities of energy stored in New Zealand. New Zealand’s energy sources discussed in this report include fossil fuels − coal, gas and oil, as well as renewable energy sources − biogas, biomass (fuelwood), geothermal energy, hydro energy, solar energy, and wind energy. Of these energy sources, coal, fuelwood, gas, and oil are considered to have stocks suitable for annual balance sheet accounts. Hydroelectric stocks are too small and dependent on recharge to be presented in a meaningful way using annual balance sheets. No stock estimates are made for fuelwood due to insufficient information. Coal, gas, and oil stocks are estimated in this report.
From the energy account it is clear that coal resource stocks are far larger (39 times more energy) than New Zealand’s gas and oil reserve stocks. Gas and oil are exploited to a greater degree than coal, with gas and oil extraction accounting for 76 percent of New Zealand’s energy extraction over the period January 1992 to December 2000. Gas extraction alone accounted for 55 percent of total energy extraction in this period. Over the period January 1996 to December 2000, gas and oil stocks diminished 18 percent, with 1,604 petajoules of gas and oil extracted and 964 petajoules of gas and oil added to stocks through discoveries and reclassifications.
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