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35 news results

18/02/2016 - General News

Cutting-edge crime prevention tech rolling out across New Zealand

Z Energy is rolling out the latest technology to keep its sites, staff and customers safe across New Zealand licence plate recognition software.

Z’s General Manager of Retail, Mark Forsyth, said the new technology has been successfully piloted and is now being rolled out across the country. The licence plate recognition software is the latest in a string of state-of-the-art security measures, following smoke cannons, SelectaDNA mist and an $8 million digital CCTV network on every site.

“This technology, coupled with Z’s cutting edge digital CCTV technology, is already making a huge difference on Z sites, particularly in preventing ‘drive-offs’ which cost Z around $1.5 million per year,” said Mark.

“When we identify a vehicle involved in a drive off, the number plate is captured in the system and if that vehicle comes onto any Z site again, the technology immediately recognises the plate, focuses cameras on the vehicle and driver and turns the pump on to pre-pay, preventing the vehicle from filling up without paying.

“Additionally, the quality footage we now get through this software and digital CCTV aids the police in identifying people and increases the odds of catching them. Already in this pilot we’ve reduced drive-offs by up to 80 per cent at some sites,” he said.

“Regardless of where you do it, if you steal from Z, anywhere in the country, you’re very likely to be caught.”

Mark Forsyth said Z had partnered with Auror, an Auckland-based company, pioneering the development of an innovative crime prevention platform and Focus Digital Security, New Zealand’s leading implementer of ANPR technology, to deliver this solution across the country.

He said that with Auror and Focus, Z was also working on applying the new technology so that if a stolen vehicle comes onto a Z site an automatic alert is sent directly to Police alerting them to the vehicle’s location.

Getting this information immediately to police will be really helpful as often stolen vehicles are involved in robberies and burglaries. We’ve got some incredibly smart technology on Z sites that now makes committing a crime on a Z site one of the dumbest things you can do.

“We want to get the message out loud and clear that we’re not going to stand for anything that makes our sites, our staff or our customers unsafe. If anyone’s thinking about driving off without paying or doing anything illegal or unsafe on our sites, don’t bother – the chances of getting away with anything are incredibly low and the chances of getting caught have never been higher.”

Jonathan Hill: 04 498 0212 

03/02/2016 - General News

Vegan pies becomes a permanent fixture at Z

Due to huge demand and a petition requesting the continuation of its availability, Z Energy’s famous Mexican vegan pie will become a permanent fixture in Z stores.

In July, Z ran a ‘DIY Pie’ competition asking people to submit and then vote on their own pie recipes. With almost 4,000 recipes submitted and, with a highly organised vegan community, the winning pie was a Mexican vegan pie designed by ‘Gemma from Auckland’, which went on sale for a month starting on 28 December.

Z’s pie aficionado, Mark Forsyth, said for a company that committed to listening to its customers, it was blindingly obvious that Z’s customers had spoken.

“We’re just so pleased with the success of Gemma’s pie. It basically sold out across the country within the first week of it being stocked and we’ve struggled to keep up with demand over the rest of the month.

“We never expected to be in this position and we’re now gearing up to get the pie into permanent production. This will take a few weeks and we expect Gemma’s pie will be back in stores on a permanent basis in early March.

Mark Forsyth said Z had learned a lot about the challenges of producing vegan food throughout the process.

“In particular we’re grateful for the support and understanding of the vegan community, including Gemma, once we learned a pastry conditioner in the pies contained minute traces of an animal-derived product.

“As a result of learning about this we not only removed it from the pie, but from all of Z’s pies and we’ve taken the opportunity to review every ingredient that goes into our pies to ensure they are what people expect,” he said.

“Z’s committed to stocking a broader range of options in our stores and this pie and the process we went through while we were making it have taught us a lot and helped us take some important small steps towards that goal.”

Jonathan Hill: 04 498 0212

01/02/2016 - General News

Helping groups do more good in their hood

Community groups doing good in their neighbourhoods can now apply for a share of more than $1 million from Z.

Applications for Good in the Hood are open from 1 to 29 February, and Z’s Community Manager Christine Langdon said this year is all about providing support to local groups, big and small, that are making a difference in their community.

Every Z station will again be giving away $5,000 to help their neighbourhoods. Of this $5,000 per station, $4,000 will be distributed between four neighbourhood groups or projects that help people who need it.

Good in the Hood is the ultimate in keeping it local, with each Z station selecting the four groups that are supported by their site in 2016, and customers then voting on them.

“There’s no way that we could know what matters to the diverse communities around New Zealand better than the locals do, which is why it’s up to our local service station teams, and our local customers, to decide what they want to support,” said Christine.

Each of the successful groups will receive a share of the $4,000 per Z site, with customers having the opportunity to decide how much each group gets by voting with an orange token each time they visit Z during May.

“The remaining $1,000 will be used by our local retailers throughout the year to support other neighbourhood projects and initiatives around each Z station.”

Applications for Good in the Hood 2016 are open for all of February. Interested groups that meet the criteria of helping people and having a specific need should visit the service station near where they operate to say hello and have a chat about the good they do.

To see what last year’s groups have been doing with their funding, or to apply to be part of the programme in 2016, visit z.co.nz/GoodintheHood.


Jonathan Hill: 021 440 090

27/01/2016 - Sustainability news

Time to take up the climate gauntlet

The world’s leaders agreed in Paris last month to an ambitious target of limiting global temperature increases to 1.5°C by 2030; for context, scientists say a two degree increase – just half a degree above the agreed target - could sink some island nations, worsen droughts and drive a third of the globe’s species to extinction.

It’s a challenge the world cannot afford to overlook. As US President Barack Obama said to the United Nations last year, this is the first generation to experience the effects of climate change, and the last that can do something about it. The global stage has been set for unprecedented action on climate change, and it’s now up to us, as individuals and businesses, to get into action while we can still limit the worst social, economic and environmental impacts of climate change.

Failure to prepare for climate change has been identified as posing the greatest risk to the global economy over the next decade in a World Economic Forum survey released last week. For a company whose products currently account for about five per cent of New Zealand’s total greenhouse gas emissions, Z’s role in meeting this challenge may seem counterintuitive. This is the thinking that business can show real leadership on – rather than focusing on the costs of taking action on climate change, what are the opportunities that come with leading?

Like most businesses now, Z acknowledges and accepts the science of climate change. We accept that the products we sell contribute to the problem and we believe that, as a transport energy company with no oil and gas exploration interests, we are in a unique position to move from being part of the problem to the heart of the solution.

We believe that being a part of this solution includes working alongside other Kiwi businesses to take up the gauntlet thrown down by the global climate framework, and take action in incorporating carbon action plans into our strategies. Everything we now see and hear is that customers are increasingly demanding this level of action and commitment from the businesses they choose to support and are prepared to reward those companies that lead in this space.

The upcoming review of the New Zealand Emissions Trading Scheme provides a timely opportunity to develop a meaningful policy response in order to meet this global target. But facing into the climate change challenge isn’t simply the job of government – it requires leadership and commitment from business and, ultimately, from consumers.

As an example of providing this type of leadership and commitment, Z will this year open a $26 million biodiesel plant in South Auckland. The plant will produce 20 million litres of sustainable biodiesel per year, and is the only plant of its type in the world to have been built without a government subsidy or mandate. For the first time, commercial and retail fuel consumers in the upper North Island will in April have the choice to use a sustainable, locally-produced biodiesel as part of their own small steps in tackling the climate change challenge.
While business must increasingly lead, policy can and should facilitate and encourage meaningful, ambitious action on climate change. Businesses will be much more likely and able to act boldly in the shift to a low carbon economy if long-term political ambition is clear and consistent.

Z acknowledges the uncertainties around the policy and financial instruments needed to tackle New Zealand’s unique emissions profile, and that any carbon market mechanism must be equitable, and sensible. We also recognise that this is one of the most complex policy challenges of our time.

However, we do not see New Zealand’s emissions profile as being an insurmountable barrier to the ability to lead innovative and meaningful change in the creation of climate change policy solutions.

The global climate agreement gives us the context to develop a meaningful response that must result in profound, long-term change. It’s up to us all to interpret how to move on that, and quickly. New Zealand’s current commitment (30% below 2005 levels by 2030, or 11% below our 1990 baseline) would lead to a 3.5° temperature increase by 2100.

Fundamentally, for a carbon market mechanism to result in action and change, it must be fungible, linked internationally, and carry a price per tonne that will make business and consumers take notice and, most importantly, change.

If the New Zealand public, and New Zealand business, are up for this, then what’s stopping us from leading on this? Why couldn’t New Zealand be the first country in the world to enable an effective market-based solution to global climate change? New Zealand has a global reputation for leading on the things that really matter and businesses understand the opportunities of being at the leading edge - particularly when it comes to the products and services that fit the changing demands of a low-carbon economy.
As a company which has set some bold and ambitious sustainability targets without a clear roadmap as to how to achieve them, we want to partner with Kiwi businesses to be bold, to take advantage of New Zealand’s trusted international reputation, and to create opportunities which result in social, economic, and environmental sustainability.

The climate change gauntlet has been thrown. The worst thing we could do right now is not pick it up.

26/01/2016 - Sustainability news

Z customers are Conscious Consumers

From this week, customers visiting a selection of Z service stations across the country will be able to call themselves conscious consumers.

On Monday, five Z sites across the country became Conscious Consumer accredited as part of a pilot, joining around 300 other local Kiwi businesses recognised for their commitment to sustainable and ethical products and services.

Z’s Sustainability Manager, Gerri Ward, says Conscious Consumer accreditation is just the next logical step for Z.

“At Z, we’re committed to sustainability, and we’re committed to providing our customers with ethical and sustainable products and services on our sites.”

“Working together with Conscious Consumers was the perfect fit for us, and it gave us a great opportunity to get some external accreditation for the changes we’ve worked so hard to make,” Ms. Ward says.

The programme, which recognises businesses for their ethical business credentials, awards accreditation only once a certain number of badge standards have been met.

The five Z stations piloting the programme – Z Pukekohe, Z Bethlehem, Z Carlton Corner, Z Kaiapoi and Z Mosgiel – have been recognised for having met the badge standards for Recycling, Composting, Generosity, and BYO Containers.

“In 2012 we set ourselves a target to reduce our waste to landfill by 70% and immediately got into action on our recycling programme. We estimate we recycle about 3,500 tonnes of cardboard, paper, plastic, cans and glass, and compost about 500 tonnes of food waste a year,” Ms. Ward says. Z also operates the biggest public place recycling network in the country, with forecourt recycling bins on 103 service station sites across the country.

“We’re committed to supporting our local communities through our Good in the Hood programme, which sees Z giving away around $1 million per year. And, although we’ve happily accepted customers who choose to bring their own coffee cups for a number of years now, from Monday this week in our five pilot Z sites we’ll be offering a 50c discount to those customers.”

The Conscious Consumers hospitality accreditation programme has over 300 business and 40,000 consumer members across the six main regions of New Zealand. Their app lets consumers find and support local businesses acting sustainable and doing good stuff in their communities.

For more information on Conscious Consumers, visit www.consciousconsumers.org.nz

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