Monday, July 08, 2013

Climate change: A self-fulfilling prophecy of failure

When the ETS was introduced, farming was excluded on the (spurious) basis that cutting agricultural emissions is too hard. So what's the government doing now? Cutting funding to find ways of making it easier:

The Government has proposed cutting $10 million in funding for climate change research in a move described as disheartening for New Zealand's highly capable climate scientists.

Treasury documents showed that Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy has recommended scaling back funding for Climate Change Research Grants by $2 million in the next financial year, $3.75 million in 2014/15 and $4.25 million in 2015/16.

This would reduce the pool of funding from nearly $10 million a year to $4.5 million a year by 2016.

The contestable grants were used to finance research by tertiary institutions and government agencies on adapting to climate change, reducing emissions and creating carbon sinks, and tapping into business opportunities which arise from climate change.

...and this of course will then be used as a further excuse for our polluting farmers not to pay their own way - a self-fulfilling prophecy of failure.

And meanwhile, while the government dithers and protects its cronies, we end up paying for them, in storm damage, drought bailouts, and higher insurance costs. This doesn't actually save anyone any money - it just shifts the bill from those who are responsible for the damage to those who are not. Its simply a subsidy, nothing more. But then, subsidising farmers is what the National Party is all about.