'There will be job losses' - No commercially viable alternatives to gas in wake of end to new exploration permits - Bridges

National Party leader Simon Bridges says the government's move to halt the issuing of new permits for oil and gas exploration is a "disaster for the regions".

Speaking on TVNZ1's Breakfast today, Mr Bridges called the new policy "environmentally adverse". 

"There will be job losses from this. There's a bunch of companies that have been exploring, they can't do that anymore. It sends a message offshore. It sends a shiver down businesses' spine here in New Zealand."

When asked by Breakfast host Jack Tame if it instead sent a message of a decrease in carbon emissions,  Mr Bridges said, "actually this perversely has as much chance as increasing emissions". 

"You've got a big industry in the North Island that runs on gas. There aren't commercially viable alternatives. When that gas runs out, it'll be cold."

He said he accepted "in theory" transition over time from oil and gas, "but I don't think this was a transition, this was a no consultation, this is what we're doing". 

The announcement to end new exploration permits happened last week, with this year's permits only limited to onshore acreage in Taranaki. 

The government will stop issuing new permits for oil and gas exploration in a bid to cut carbon emissions. Source: Breakfast

MPI concerned strawberry risk could be blown out of proportion amid needle contamination

Authorities are worried the risk could be blown out of proportion as the strawberry needle scandal that swept across Australia crossed to New Zealand.

A punnet of strawberries bought from an Auckland supermarket on Sunday was found to have needles in it.

Paul Dansted from the Ministry of Primary Industries (MPI) said the incident in Auckland was under investigation but he was concerned that the risk could be blow out of proportion.

“That is one of the things we’re concerned about…I’m going to continue to eat strawberries, we don’t see any particular threat at the moment but obviously when we do get reports, we’ll take them seriously and we’ll work with police to ensure that whoever is doing it can be tracked down and dealt with,” he told TVNZ1’s Breakfast.

He said any strawberries exported from Australia are now going through metal protection processes. 

Paul Dansted from MPI said the discovery of a needle in a punnet of strawberries in Auckland was under investigation but he was concerned the risk could be blown out of proportion. Source: Breakfast


‘I've been forced to do it’ - Breakfast’s Hayley admits she’s stood in a car park to reserve a spot

Following yesterday's 1 NEWS NOW story about car parks being 'reserved' by pedestrians blocking vehicles' access, TVNZ 1's Breakfast hosts have - unsurprisingly - taken different sides on the issue.

As video of a stand-off between a vehicle and pedestrian at Auckland's St Lukes Mall went viral, the topic was of course discussed among the Breakfast cast.

"I think it's terrible," began Haley Holt.

"It's a really, really bad thing to do - but I've been forced to do it.

"I was forced to stand there, and I did have people going past me and beeping at me. It's horrible, I'll never do it again."

Matty McLean said that although he'd never been forced to take such action, he was unsure about what he'd do if the situation ever arose.

"You know me, I'm very susceptible to peer pressure, and I could easily be talked into standing there," he said.

The incident took place at St Lukes Mall, and eventually led to the woman giving up the park.

"We all know what it is like, driving around this city, trying to find a car park, and sometimes it is the most infuriating thing for your day.

"I kind of get it."

Meanwhile, Daniel Faitaua didn't mince his words for anyone who decides to stand in a car-park with a tongue-in-cheek:

"You can not stand in a car park. A car park is designed for a vehicle.

"If that was me, I'd be reversing right back into her."

Video was shot recently of an Auckland woman and child standing in a spot – and it got the Breakfast crew talking. Source: Breakfast



'You can be strong, you can be kind' - Jacinda Ardern talks leadership, President Trump on US television

Jacinda Ardern's style of leadership was a hot topic of conversation on American television overnight, as the New Zealand Prime Minister made an appearance on NBC's Today Show.

With Ms Ardern currently in New York for the United Nations' general assembly, the New Zealand Prime Minister's approach to politics has taken American audiences by storm, contrasting significantly with that of US President, Donald Trump.

Read more: Baby Neve inspiration behind 'family-friendly policies', Jacinda Ardern tells millions of Americans on NBC's Today show

Questioned by hosts on the Today Show, Ms Ardern stated that she rejected the idea of a single successful style in how to run a country, insisting that there is a place for humility in positions of power.

"I don't think there's one rule book for leadership," the PM said.

The show is watching by millions, with the Prime Minister touching on parenthood and her appreciation of solo parents. Source: Breakfast

"I really rebel against this idea that politics has to be a place full of ego, where you're constantly focused on scoring hits against one another.

"Yes we need a robust democracy but you can be strong and you can be kind. We're building what I'd like to believe is a really compassionate government, one that's focused on lifting the wellbeing of our people but also doing well economically too."

Questioned about what would be said were she to meet President Trump face-to-face, the Prime Minister said she'd be happy to discuss what makes New Zealand so special.

"I would just talk about New Zealand."

"I'd like to think that we're exemplars and we've got a record that we can be proud of. So I'd probably just talk about us."

The Prime Minister took the stand during an appearance on NBC’s Today show. Source: The Tonight Show


Strawberry needle epidemic 'an Australian problem', says Kiwi grower

Amid the ongoing needle scandal on both sides of the Tasman, New Zealand strawberry growers are urging the public to keep supporting the industry.

With Sunday night's news that a needle was found in a punnet of strawberries purchased from an Auckland Countdown supermarket, the Choice brand has been removed from shelves, following a wave of similar incidents in Australia.

Kiwi growers maintain that their produce is safe for consumption, with just one case of needles being found so far in New Zealand.

Phil Greig says there’s no reason to believe the issue could spread here, and that no needles have been found in NZ fruit. Source: 1 NEWS

"I think the main thing is to get out there and eat New Zealand strawberries, we are all doing our best to make it safe," grower Phil Greig told 1 NEWS.

"I do reiterate it is an Australian problem, not a New Zealand problem."

Speaking to 1 NEWS yesterday, MPI director of food regulation Paul Dansted assured Kiwi consumers that the one reported incident was no cause for concern, although insisted vigilance must be maintained against supposed copycats.

"We are just advising consumers to keep an eye out if there is anything out of the ordinary," he said.

MPI insists New Zealand has a good food safety supply. Source: Breakfast