DAY 3: Getting Prepared

The weather in Wellington is once again windy, rainy, and stormy – the perfect segue into discussing the COP theme of the day, resilience.

Resilience can seem like jargon, but it actually describes a key aspect of adaptation – how countries and communities prepare themselves against the effects of climate change. In New Zealand, for example, we need to be more resilient against sea level rise. Developed and developing countries often pair up to institute projects that will ensure crops survive, storms destroy fewer buildings, and sea walls protect island nations.

Much of the inequity between developed and developing countries stems from the disparity between how much countries have contributed to climate change emissions relative to how much they will suffer. Developing nations, which most often contribute only the bare minimum of global emissions, are the countries most likely to suffer when the effects of climate change escalate. Resilience initiatives can present tangible ways for developed countries to address the justice issues at play.

Of course, this is something that spans well beyond the above paragraph – climate justice groups dedicate their lives to delving deep into the intricacies at hand. If you want to get a sense of why resilience is so important (on top of everything else), check out this powerful video from Filipino spoken word artist Isabella Borgeson.

As for the actual agreement – the negotiators are feeling the pressure, as they have to have a draft ready by the end of the week. Check out this article from Grist, which explains some of the reasons it’s so difficult to get an agreement finalised, and all the issues negotiators have to wade through.

It has been a fantastic day for divestment, with announcing that 500 institutions have committed to divest $3.4 trillion in assets from fossil fuels. With more governments and organisations than ever jumping aboard the divestment train, it makes you wonder why on Earth the New Zealand Government voted down the Green Party’s bill to divest our publicly owned assets from fossil fuels!500 Institutions hav committed to divest $3.4 Trillio in assets from fossil fuels

Green MP Julie Anne Genter was lucky to see Dr James Hansen, prominent scientist, activist, and a bit of a celebrity in the climate world, speak about carbon pricing. Like the Green Party, Dr James Hansen believes cap and trade systems such as New Zealand’s Emissions Trading Scheme are not working, and supports carbon taxes.


12 Comments Posted

  1. @Chris –

    Ah…. I see the confusion. A Coal Mine is an “Asset” which we are saying should not be sold, and so it is, even though it is worth less than nothing in real terms. The opposition to asset sales included it though.

    Foreign ownership can also be a means of avoiding responsibility, something this government is quite expert at doing, and in the short run that would be “cheaper” than doing what is right. A value judgement this government is experienced with, given that it makes no other choices.

    The discussion of divestment however, refers to investments in companies that are currently profitable based on their providing or burning carbon. Investment portfolios that include Exxon, Peabody, BP and Shell are to be avoided. Solid Energy doesn’t fall into that definition because IT is a mess that it is our responsibility to clean up.

    You know…. responsibility? The thing this government avoids at all costs?

    So you’re right we probably COULD be clearer. However, Solid Energy is a unique problem.

  2. Lookin at the definition of fraud. Then looking at the information war full of illusions and NLP hypnotism. Are there not court cases to be had against the media?

    The legitimacy of our “democratic” govt comes into question. If banks and media are all owned by the same control network, which university studies show is the case, then the current state of capital market control should be ended by our courts. Simply an end to the media propaganda would be an significant step towards democracy.

    What are the odds our kangaroo courts would give cases of media fraud the light of day. Prince D wrote, “my husband is planning to kill”, etc. Royal Courts don’t rule against The Royals and friends.

    The US government also faces loses in various courts, but not yet at the level required for a military coup or other such transition. Surely the vector of the drone assassinations puts the likes of the Clintons and Bushs in jail. Endless trails leading to guild. Hey, they can go free if they just give up on the wwIII shenanigans. The Spanish have an arrest warrant out for the PM of Israel. Turkey has supposedly invaded Iraq, what now? Will the UN in NY, now slice them both up for Xmas. And good luck trying to look any of the other NATO countries in the eye. From the crap the Hungarians are getting in the media, I’m guessing they are one of the few NATO members who are making a real humanitarian effort behind the scenes.

  3. Short term thinking based on present economic arguments, and arrangements just lead to the same old end. The rate of development just dictates the length of time till we get there.

    A greater energy harvest by any means is not an answer. Sure you can vary the consequences but long term our consumption will dictate human span of existence.

    Externalities can not be ignored for long. Just as long as we remain blind or in denial.

    The sum total of the nuclear industry leaves and awful legacy and extremely high risk in the shorter term.

    The question ” Why do you need the energy” brings out some remarkable arguments for continuing the impossible.

  4. No bj, that is just posthoc reasoning by Ms Delahunty. The Greens were opposed to the sale even when Solid energy was seen as viable: And this one by Gareth was about living up to standards:
    No doubt you can show a press release from the Greens dated before 2014 saying all coal mines need to be shut down. If not, why not?

  5. @Chris

    The answer to your question was clear enough in the link you provided…

    “Once the Indian Government or Indian public sector companies get their hands on Solid Energy’s coal mines or rights to mine, they will develop these resources in their shareholders’ interests, not those of New Zealanders.”

    We don’t want the mines so much as we want the mining stopped. Transferring ownership and control to someone else doesn’t stop it.

    @DBuckley – Not sure what your question is. The party is asking a rhetorical question. We know why National is stuffing the country. We want other people to work it out too.

    As for what I know that the party does not? I know that the world needs to be building more nuclear plants. and investing in research into LFTR reactors and that the latter is something we could do.

    What else?

    That we have to shift the Overton window? I think most Greens know that too.

  6. So, BJ, and Oldlux, we’re all violently agreeing here, so why is the Green Party asking “it makes you wonder why on Earth the New Zealand Government voted down the Green Party’s bill to divest our publicly owned assets from fossil fuels!”

    What do you guys know that the Green Party doesn’t, and perhaps, more importantly, why?

  7. Not everyone can see that Nats have no policy nor ideas apparently, of where we are going. They are in denial over many hard facts and dismiss well established scientific opinion in favour of short term hype and spin, privatisation and even greater separation of this countries wealth and potential wealth from its people.

    Nats are not the only ones in denial as they have loyal followers on the path to a very dim future.

    Playing politics is no substitute for honesty.

  8. No DBuckley… that isn’t a dead-rat we can eat . It is a poisoned rat.

    First: There is not any policy of National’s that wasn’t ours in the first place, that we can support at all.

    Second: There isn’t any honesty in National OR in the press.

    That’s how things are. That’s how it will stay until the climate, environment and economy are so far down the tubes that the NZ public feels the slap of the ruler. Administered by the Mother Nature Superior …

    Wrong Answer! Whack!

    However you present it, the Green party can’t agree to National’s sociopathic sovereignty sell-out dealings, its blame the victim social policies or its privatization is perfect propaganda. Not won’t. Cannot. THOSE things come from its underlying ideology and its opposition to doing something meaningful about climate comes from the same place. They don’t oppose action because it is fun for them (I could be wrong about that)… they are motivated reasoners.

    That New Zealanders are so fatuous as to believe that “the smiling assassin” can be trusted is a problem, but it is only fair to paraphrase a quote from somewhere else… “It is morally wrong to allow a sucker to keep his country”.

    Which could be applied to the TPP as well as to a dozen other issues on which Greens and NZ First agree, and National thinks irrelevant to the reality that their ideology does not permit them to balance the national accounts without selling the countryside. They don’t have any other answer.

    Labour doesn’t actually have those answers either.

    Greens do.

    But we won’t get what we want by eating that rat. National can’t afford to give us ANY part of what is required.

  9. dbuckley I think the point is made by your own statement, ” It’s not the idea itself, it is who proposed it”.
    I wouldn’t want to work with someone like National whose sole focus is self promotion. All the learning and trialling of leadership ideas tell me that approach is based in power over others by weakening the opposition’s self belief by not giving them credit. This to me is the Corporate model that has sold all the “new ways” of doing things with little regard for the long term good. This process of politics is a sign of a deeper lack of confidence in what they are doing, focusing on the player and not the ball. A clear indicator the National Party goal is their self interest and not the goal of governance of the common good. This type of player can’t and should not be trusted if the common good looks to conflict with their power games.

  10. it makes you wonder why on Earth the New Zealand Government voted down the Green Party’s bill to divest our publicly owned assets from fossil fuels!

    It doesn’t make me wonder at all, and there is no reasonable reason what a Green Party MP should wonder about it either. It’s not the idea itself, it is who proposed it, and when. When the Nats believe the time is right, they will introduce a bill supporting the idea, and pass it into law.

    If the Greens want to actually get stuff into legislation, they need to eat a dead rat and be a supportive part of the government The Greens have made it very clear that they want to not be part of the National government, so they don’t get to pass their legislation. Its all rather easy, really.

    Oops – Sorry, I forgot that this is the Green Party blog, and its purpose is to preach to the converted. Silly me…

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