Monday, August 31, 2020

Climate Change: This government is a failure

Remember when Jacinda Ardern called climate change "my generation's nuclear free moment"? Writing in The Spinoff, Greenpeace's Gen Toop reveals the dirty truth: that her government has failed to do anything about our largest climate polluter, the dairy industry:

After three years in power, Jacinda Ardern and James Shaw have both failed to bring in a single regulation to tackle the monstrous amount of climate pollution from industrial dairying. Despite all that climate rhetoric from this government, they have been scarcely different to previous governments when it comes to dealing with the giant cow in the room.


The only thing we’ve got is an unenforceable and weak agricultural emissions target in the Zero Carbon Act. But no plan for how to reach that target and no penalties for failing to do so.

We also got a somewhat surreal moment when the co-leader of the Green Party proudly announced that under his ministership the agriculture industry would continue to be fully excluded from the nation’s Emissions Trading Scheme for another two to five years.

That means that there are no rules and no price signals that would encourage the agricultural industry to reduce climate pollution.

And so their emissions continue to increase. Meanwhile, the rest of us are expected to decrease ours. Its not just terrible climate policy - its terribly unequal as well, protecting the (pollution-backed) wealth of ten thousand farming families at the expense of five million New Zealanders.

This isn't acceptable. The rest of us pay for every atom of carbon we emit. Agriculture must do the same. And if this means marginal farms go out of business and stop polluting, that's a success, not a failure.