Wednesday, December 07, 2011

Climate change: Another fossil

New Zealand continues its shameful conduct in Durban, winning another Fossil of the Day:

New Zealand has been acting inconsistently in the KP negotiations. It has insisted that it could not constitutionally agree to provisional implementation of a second commitment period despite its internal policy stating that it can.

Further, the Government formally announced on 30 November that interim Environment Minister Hon. Nick Smith would be attending COP-17, only to change its mind on 1 December. New Zealand has also blocked discussions on carry over, wanting enough carry over to fully cover five years’ worth of LULUCF emissions.

Ultimately, this series of events has led to other negotiators describing New Zealand as 'deliberately inconsistent' and 'problematic for a thousand reasons', with its 'extreme positions on a number of issues [making] it difficult to reach consensus on anything'.

Given that we pursue a mana-based foreign policy, that last paragraph is disastrous. The impressions we make at Durban of deceit and untrustworthiness will carry over to our other negotiations, and have consequences there. But National doesn't care about that; all they care about is shielding their polluting farmer friends for another few years, no matter what the cost to the rest of us.