What should be done to secure of supply of electricity and accelerate undergrounding 

  • City Vision will look at ways we can underground faster.
  • The $10.5 million ring fenced by the Trust for undergrounding of lines in 2005 has not always been spent as intended. In recent years it has been spent on projects such as lighting the harbour bridge and other projects which have nothing to do with securing our electricity supply.
  • The Entrust trustees have allowed Vector to cut the spending on undergrounding so it will now take more than 1000 years to complete the undergrounding of poles and lines at the recent rate of progress
  • A City Vision Entrust would thoroughly investigate alternate ways to bring undergrounding to more homes. We all know it is expensive to replace the ugly old power polls but we are not prepared to wait over 1000 years.
  • If not part of a ‘planned undergrounding project’ (like in Sandringham or Franklin Road in older suburbs) each consumer must agree for their street to be undergrounded. And it comes at a substantial cost per household. An option is for consumers in streets that want to ‘buy in’ to undergrounding, without unanimous support for the project, could be offered funding to undertake undergrounding that would be paid off through the power bill over say 20-30 years.
  • Better information could be used to find out which urban trees are a danger to powerlines and which power poles cause the most accidents, and prioritise these for undergrounding. Different priorities for undergrounding can be part of the discussion Entrust has with its consumers about what they see is important to them.
  • We need to put the Trust back in Entrust so that they embark on an under-grounding programme that will keep our power on and our communities’ safe.