The Old Economy is over, but National hasn’t got the memo

There are many shortcomings a committed climate hawk (of which, I am one) could find with the COP21 Paris agreement. There is no legally binding commitment to reduce climate pollution, for example. But the agreement is nonetheless a landmark event. All the countries of the world have signed up to an agreement to limit global […]

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Time for real action to curb ag emissions

A sharp rise in in agricultural emissions shows the National Party’s emissions trading scheme (ETS) must go and a meaningful carbon price be applied to the sector. According to new Environmental Protection Authority data, agriculture’s greenhouse gas output rose 7 percent last year. We cannot continue to ignore such a large and growing contributor to […]

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Defining the Election Issue: National and Green climate policy

At its AGM last weekend, the Green Climate Protection Package was rolled out. –    It contains the over-riding goal of net carbon-neutral economy by 2050, with a National Carbon Budget comprising a series of five-yearly budget components to get to that goal. –    There will be an independent Climate Commission to advise the Government on […]

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“People … may have been caught out…I just hope he gets his projections right in the future…” – The Groserian theory of emissions reductions

Every now and then, things emerge in the give-and-take of daily life that illuminate insights with a deeper, underlying significance.   Such was the case yesterday. Some of us around the planet harbour a passing concern that dangerous, and perhaps catastrophic, climate change is likely if global greenhouse gas emissions do not begin to reduce very […]

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Not to be hypercritical, but… – analysing Minister Groser’s statement to UN-COP19

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 […]

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Climate failures Part II – Eliding towards policy incoherence

I have not been so angry in my five years in Parliament. Yesterday I wrote about the obscene policy failure of this Government in forecasting an increase in net emissions of greenhouse gases from 56 million tonnes in 2011 to around 98 m.t. in 2028.  It was, I suggested, perhaps the biggest policy failure in […]

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Seeking magical powers – and invitations to the big boys’ club: the Climate Minister rides to our rescue…

So we returned to the House on Thursday to extend another opportunity for the Minister to explain to the nation his thinking on climate policy. We were still wrestling to reconcile the scientific observation in the Gluckman report that ‘climate change is now’ with the Finance Minister’s comment that climate change ‘may well be real’.  […]

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