Friday, October 14, 2016

Climate change: The wrong track

Writing in the Herald this morning, Climate Change Minister Paula Bennett thinks our climate change policy is on the right track, citing the list of policies her government has. But are we really? Below is the government's latest official projection of our emissions pathway, from New Zealand’s second biennial report under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change:


As can be seen, the government expects both gross and net emissions to rise to 2030 (and rise beyond that), despite "commitments" to cut them.

The truth is that we are not on the right track. National's policies are ineffective, and deliberately so, to shield their polluting donors and cronies from having to pay the full costs of their activities. Their "goal" of 90% renewable electricity is on-track for failure, while they're letting polluters build more gas-fired power plants. They've deliberately crippled the ETS, while their policies around agricultural emissions research and electric vehicles are token measures, aimed at generating positive PR and the appearance of action rather than real reductions in emissions.

This is the biggest challenge facing the planet, and it is going to be disastrous for our agricultural industry. This is not a problem we can spin our way out of. We deserve a Minister who understands that, and government which will take it seriously. We won't get either under National.