This week’s revelations about the abuse of women and children on Nauru are horrifying, but sadly are not new issues for refugees and asylum seekers trying to reach Australia. Three weeks ago I tried to meet a Tamil woman, Malarvily Thevaparan, who sought find asylum in Australia from the sustained sexual abuse and other forms of torture […]
This week, Tony Abbott has visited Aotearoa New Zealand, bringing with him his racist policies against indigenous Australians and his appalling record on refugee detention camps. Abbott has launched a policy “to close” remote aboriginal communities, which is about as overtly destructive as its gets. A number of remote communities threatened with closure are, perhaps […]
The benefit of the so called rockstar economy to ordinary working New Zealanders is missing in action. As labour productivity is surging the benefits are definitely not trickling down to workers. Statistics New Zealand points out that from 1996 to 2013, labour productivity grew more in Australia than in New Zealand, up by an average […]
Climate Minister Tim Groser gave New Zealand’s statement on Wednesday night, here in Warsaw. Not wishing to be heap unfair criticism but loyal opposition prompts a few thoughts. Mr Groser’s ‘large realities’: 1. “Warming of the climate system is unequivocal.” This was raised on a theoretical basis by Swedish scientist, Svante Arrhenius, in 1896. The […]
I’m doing a bit of a geeky experiment today; I’m participating in a lives-streamed Trans-Tasman online hangout with my mate, Western Australian Senator and Greens IT spokesperson Scott Ludlum this afternoon. I wonder if this will be the first time ever politicians have ‘crossed the ditch’ digitally to talk tech issues?
Yesterday the United Nations released a letter to the Australian Government asking them to explain their welfare cuts. UN special rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights and the working group on discrimination against women are warning the cuts could have a detrimental effect on the human rights of up to 100,000 Australians, and could […]
The New South Wales government has announced a ban on all coal seam gas development within two kilometres of residential areas and industry clusters, such as horse breeders and wine producers, across the state. What can we learn from it in New Zealand?
Over the last few days, we’ve heard a number of statements from the Prime Minister relating to the decision to take 150 refugees per year from Australian offshore detention centres and the proposal for New Zealand to process asylum seekers arriving here at those same centres. John Key: “One, We don’t take more people, two […]
The announcement that New Zealand will take 150 refugees per year from Australia’s offshore detention centres in Nauru and Papua New Guinea is good news for those refugees. They will be able to leave what the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees has called “harsh” conditions with a “lack of clear and […]
Holly Walker’s press release this week outlined why urban sprawl doesn’t solve our housing crisis and doesn’t work for people looking for affordable housing. It also doesn’t work for our farming communities. As this article outlines, with residential dwellings stretching ever outward into food producing areas we see farming practices coming into conflict with their […]
I am bringing over two Australian farmers with first-hand experience of Genetically Engineered (GE) crops in their communities to tour New Zealand, share their stories and warn New Zealand farmers about the risks of GE crops. The last Green Party GE tour was in 1999, during the time of the Royal Commission into Genetic Engineering. […]
Yesterday, Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard visited our Parliament and promoted free trade agreements with all the fervour of the faithful. This position was predictable, but less well known is her stance on education. Julia is the leader who imposed the Australian version of National Standards on Australian schools against the wishes of the teachers’ unions.
Here’s John Armstrong’s view on Julia Gillard addressing Parliament, as published in the NZ Herald this morning. Greens’ vigilance on Gillard merits praise – John Armstrong The Greens have got some unwarranted stick for blocking Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard from addressing Parliament while it is officially in session. They were right to do so. […]
I want to support Federated Farmers in their raising the possibility that imported pollen may be a vector for the introduction of PSA disease in kiwifruit. This imported pollen is used to artificially pollinate kiwifruit and includes pollen from countries with PSA disease. Beekeepers are already alarmed at the arrival in NZ of the potentially […]
The government’s response to the sinking of the Ady Gil, just the latest chapter in the seemingly never ending saga of Japanese south seas whaling, has been the usual waffle. Minister McCully urges restraint, but says New Zealand’s influence is too small to do more. This is disappointing to say the least, given the strong […]
Fisher-turned-inventor Hans Jussiet explains the shield and dissolvable pin that covers baited-hooks as they are launched in this video from an ABC TVshow. Once the shielded hook sinks below the depth of seabirds and turtles, the pin dissolves and the shield is released. [Video included]
It is clear from the minister’s briefing last night that the main purpose of National’s changes to the ETS is to make us effectively the seventh state of Australia. The bill mimics exactly the bill the Rudd government has been trying (unsuccessfully) to get through the Australian senate. So a bill that has been twice […]
People in Sydney awoke today to discover the sky was turned a hellish red in an extremely rare weather event…
Fonterra has more than just its financial restructure head-ache to mull on this weekend. Its dogged support for rainforest-destroying palm kernel feed (PKE) must now be giving them a cracking migraine.
An avid frog reader has sent in this photo of the Minister of Energy and Resources, Gerry Brownlee, mining inspiration from a quality resource.
Check out this great little jam of HRH Prince Charles’ recent appeal to save the world’s rainforests (‘The Prince and the Frog’). It’s made by Tasmanian forest campaigners. To join in the campaign go here .
The International Whaling Commission is meeting this week in Portugal. NZ is ably represented by former Prime Minister Geoffrey Palmer and, according to news reports, he is “respectfully urging” Japan to lift its threat to hunt humpback whales in the Antarctic. The ODT reports he told the IWC: new evidence about the endangered status of […]
Thank goodness for climate change denier Senator Fielding of Australia. Didn’t think you’d ever hear me say that, did you? Senator Fielding is the one vote Rudd didn’t have yesterday to pass their “Carbon Reduction Plan” – or Emissions Trading Scheme in our language. And that is a good thing, because the proposal was so […]
Australian Greens leader Senator Bob Brown may lose his seat if he doesn’t pay court costs of A$240,000 to Forestry Tasmania by the end of the month. The costs relate to a landmark Federal Court case that Bob took in 2006 against the state owned enterprise. He alleged that Forestry Tasmania were breaching Federal threatened […]
Could this historic Green win in Australia over the weekend be a portent of things to come in Mt Albert? The Greens’ historic win in the ALP stronghold of Fremantle hinged on Liberal voters out to punish Labor, WA Opposition Leader Eric Ripper says. Greens candidate Adele Carles made history with her victory in Saturday’s […]
Australia can, must and will meet 40% cuts by 2020. The Greens are confident that once we set off on the path to 25% cuts, delivered mostly at home, we can easily accelerate our effort towards 40% and beyond to carbon neutrality. Putting 25% on the table will see Australia taken seriously at the Copenhagen […]
The UN Human Rights Committee has condemned the 2007 Howard Government Northern Territorial Intervention. The intervention was a response to a report on child abuse in NT “Little Children are Sacred”. There were protests all over Australia and in NZ condemning Howards intention to legislate for government management of the aboriginal land, much of it […]
On Tuesday I got to ask my first proper Question in the House. Unsurprisingly Hone Harawira asked more or less the same question. Will the Government follow the lead of Australia and change their position to support the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People? The Prime Minister did a good imitation of saying […]
Last night the parliament debated the first reading of the Corrections (Contract Management of Prisons) Bil. I have blogged about this issue frequently, but not yet addressed the key argument of National – that private prisons are cheaper. So I used my speech last night to refer to both Australian and US research that showed […]
Today is the day when a new joint Australian/New Zealand standard for the use of sunbeds comes into effect, albeit a voluntary one for New Zealand. This is the result of lots of work by the standards authority following a damning report that I posted about last January in Death by Tanning. The Cancer Society […]
It’s an important question for Australians, with ramifications for New Zealand. Australian Green Senator Bob Brown has introduced legislation requiring a simple yes or no referendum at the 2010 election. The last time a referendum was held in 1999, it was soundly defeated, but Brown claims that this was because the government of the day […]
Another laugh out loud video from Greenpeace Australia. It seems that Rudd wants to pay $1.2 billion in subsidies to the coal industry as part of their emissions trading scheme! At least when we subsidise our polluters, it is because they are trade exposed. Export coal isn’t covered by Kyoto. So what’s up?
From Kiwiblog this afternoon we find out that National is signposting the way to an Aussie flag. That’s a vote winner. Anyway it’s a defining point for us. In our party we have an Australian who wanted to become a Kiwi. In National they want to become Aussies. All practice now – ‘GO wallabies!’
The Bay Buzz covered a local Forest and Bird candidate debate in the Tukituki electorate last night. It seems the sitting MPs tried to dominate the event: It was mostly the Rick[Barker, Labour] and Craig [Foss, National] show, with an occasional reminder from expert witness Quentin [Duthie] that without the Greens around as babysitter, the […]
I see a looming preferential trade deal with the United States is enough for Matthew Hooten to declare Phil Goff New Zealander of the year. High praise indeed. Although US trade deals don’t seem to have worked out quite so well for the much bigger economy of Australia (bigger than New Zealand that is, not […]
Courtesy of The Oil Drum
According to Statistics New Zealand’s Sustainable Development and Population team there are up to 600,000 New Zealanders living overseas, most of them in Aussie (where Rayna Fahey just held her Green Party campaign launch last night). Not all of them are eligible to vote, but presumably a significant proportion are. Last election there were 28,000 […]
Sue Kedgley has been putting her journalism skills to work and talking to Australian chef Stephanie Alexander about the Kitchen Gardens in Schools she initiated. Kitchen Gardens in Schools is described as such: In the Kitchen Garden Program children across Years 3 to 6 spend a minimum of 40 minutes a week in an extensive […]
Such is the name of a report released today by the Future Fuels Forum, an initiative led by the Australia’s CSIRO Energy Transformed Flagship. The Age summarises the bad news: PETROL prices could reach $8 a litre [~NZ$10 per litre] within a decade if oil production peaks and Australia is not ready to shift to […]
Maybe New Zealand’s clean green image is not such a good thing after all. Each week the ABC pits two of Australia’s advertising agencies against each other in a challenge to sell the unsellable. This week the brief was to build support for invading New Zealand. Follow the link and check out the ad on […]