Friday, September 11, 2020


Transport is our second biggest polluter after agriculture, making up 17% of our national emissions. Cars and trucks emit 15 million tons of CO2 every year. So, if we're serious about tackling climate change, we need to eliminate this entirely. Public transport and better urban design will be a key part of that, but the best, easiest thing we can do to make a start is to push hard to drive uptake of electric vehicles, forcing dirty fossil-fuelled cars off the road. Which means feebate schemes and a phaseout timeline for fossil-fuelled cars (which means a date for an import ban and a date for a registration ban outside of museums).

The government has already flubbed this, with a business-as-usual energy policy that does nothing new for EVs. So what's National's answer? Sadly, even worse. They're set a target for EV numbers which is barely more than business-as-usual projections (so, not really a target at all then), while their chief policy to drive uptake is to let EVs drive in bus lanes while exempting them from road user charges (that is, from paying for the damage they cause to the roads). Both policies obviously only work if EV numbers remain low - that is, if they are ineffective - while the bus lane proposal actually means slowing down public transport, which actively makes things worse.

This is not the policy of a party which is serious about reducing emissions and tackling climate change. But then, we already knew that about National, didn't we?