Thursday, August 06, 2020

Climate Change: Still insufficient

Our climate change policies are insufficient to achieve our goal of carbon neutrality by 2050, according to independent assessor Climate Action Tracker:

New Zealand won’t be carbon neutral by 2050 without much stronger policies, says an independent analysis by Climate Action Tracker.

The non-profit highlighted a lack of active policies for cutting methane, spurring electric vehicles and boosting renewable energy.

Despite capping emissions, reforming the Emissions Trading Scheme, and passing the Zero Carbon Act, the Government is well off track for meeting a climate goal of curbing heating below 2 degrees Celsius, let alone 1.5C (the goal of the Zero Carbon Act), the analysis says.

Our target under the Paris Agreement is rated “insufficient” – the same as last year. Climate Action Tracker says if all countries followed our example, the world would reach 3C hotter than pre-industrial levels.

That target is currently under review, but that doesn't mean that the government will strengthen it, and Labour has shown no appetite for protecting lives in the future at the cost of jobs now (or at least, not when it comes to climate change). But as with COVID-19, the best way of protecting the economy from climate change is to go hard and go early to decarbonise, thus getting in on the ground floor of the post-carbon economy while limiting the total damage we do to the atmosphere. Sadly, they've preferred to try fudging the numbers instead.