Thursday, September 05, 2019

Fronting up

Today I appeared before the Environment Committee to give an oral submission on the Zero Carbon Bill. Over 1,500 people have asked to appear in person, so they've divided into subcommittees and are off touring the country, giving people a five minute slot each. The other submitters were a mixed bunch: three high school students, a bunch of angry farmers, a biochar advocate, a random greenie, a climate change denier, and a member of the IPCC (who wasted time to deny that the IPCC was telling newspapers in Whanganui what to print). Most submitters didn't explicitly address the bill, but instead just talked about climate change of peripheral issues.

My submission was a mess. Yes, I said what I needed to, but the nervousness at talking to people meant I was at least 50% "um". If you ask me to be a serial killer or a tortured prince or a Sci-Fi senator or a regency gentleman for an evening, I'm your guy. Plonk me in a chair and get me to talk about something I'm actually knowledgeable about, and I go to pieces. Clearly I should have written myself a character sheet.

I don't think there were any permanent members of the committee present (I had Kiritapu Allan, Adrian Rurawhe, and Ian McKelvie, along with someone else I didn't recognise). Which might be good news, because the committee seemed awfully taken in by those angry farmers complaining that their rural way of life was under threat from evil trees. Its kindof disconcerting that the fate of our environment (and the world) depends on these people. Still, there's one good thing: they didn't entertain the climate change denier for an instant.