Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Dear John...

Last week, my friend Morgue launched the Don't be a Rodney campaign to lobby John Key on climate change. Here's my contribution:

Dear Mr Key,

I am writing to express my concern about your government’s plans to delay the implementation of the Emissions Trading Scheme pending a select committee review of climate change policy. I am concerned that this is a step in the wrong direction which will undermine the credibility of the government’s efforts to put a price on carbon, as well as tarnishing our reputation on the international stage.

In particular, I am concerned about the draft terms of reference for the select committee, which include a review of the science and a wide-ranging inquiry into every aspect of climate change policy. In my view, this is a mistake. The science is clear: climate change is happening. Rather than questioning that, we should be worrying about how to minimise its impacts on New Zealand and the world.

I understand that your agreement with ACT commits you to a select committee inquiry. But you don’t have to be a Rodney about it! A review of the science by untrained politicians is simply laughable – not to mention embarrassing. So, I’m asking you to exclude that review from the committee’s terms of reference. Instead, the committee should focus on the key issue: how to meet the commitment we have made under the Kyoto Protocol to reduce emissions to 1990 levels by 2012.

I’d also like to see a large committee, which allows every party to be represented. This is too important an issue to allow it to be monopolised and hijacked by ACT. Finally, I’d like to see a quick committee process, so that energy and electricity generation can enter the ETS on schedule in 2010.

Climate change is the most important issue facing our country at the moment. It threatens our environment, and it threatens out future. I hope you will keep that in mind when deciding your policy.

The facebook group has 175 members so far. If even half of them actually write a letter, then it will be enough to seriously register on the government's radar.