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The Green’s climate change policy

Written By: - Date published: 12:03 pm, June 2nd, 2014 - 128 comments
Categories: climate change, ETS, global warming, greens, russel norman - Tags:

Far away from the media circus that surrounds the Internet Mana Party coalition the Greens have made a useful contribution to the debate on what should be New Zealand’s response to climate change.  The proposals are:

  1. A goal of net carbon neutrality by 2050.

  2. The establishment of an independent Climate Commission to provide expert and independent advice to the government on carbon prices, carbon budgets, and complementary measures to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050.

  3. The phasing out of the failed Emissions Trading Scheme and an initial price on carbon of $25 per tonne on CO2 equivalent emissions for all sectors except agriculture. Dairy emissions will pay $12.50 per tonne. Forestry will be credited at $12.50 per tonne.

  4. The recycling of all revenue raised from a carbon charge back to families and businesses through a $2000 income tax-free band and a one percent company tax cut.

  5. A suite of complementary measures to support the rapid transition to a carbon neutral economy.

The proposed carbon tax is not a new idea.  It was Labour’s preferred policy response to climate change in 2005 and the ETS was only agreed to after New Zealand First blocked implementation of a carbon tax after the election.  In Australia it was the Labor Party’s selected means of dealing with CO2 emissions.

The difference between a carbon tax and an ETS is, very simplistically, that a carbon tax requires a centrally designated price to be set for the emission of a greenhouse gas whereas an ETS sets an acceptable level of output of GHGs and then lets a created market decide what that price should be.  The theory is that an ETS is able to respond rapidly to supply and demand pressures and reward activities that absorb greenhouse gasses.  One of the major problems is with the quality of certification and the handling of large numbers of credits which the former Soviet Union nations amassed following the demise of their heavy industry.

The policy is brave and will be attacked on the basis that there will be a cost to ordinary New Zealanders.  And no doubt the relatively minute nature of New Zealand’s emissions will be raised as justification for us to do nothing.

But as Russel Norman said (h/t Parsupial)

We cannot expect other bigger countries to reduce emissions if we are not doing so ourselves. Especially when many of those countries are poorer than us. On the other hand, by demonstrating that a transition to a clean economy is both possible and rewarding, we can help spur global action. We are a can-do country. We are not the kind of people who expect others to do the heavy lifting while we sit back. So why sit back on climate change?

National’s initial response has been typical.  Stephen Joyce jumped onto twitter and claimed that as New Zealand’s carbon intensity has been dropping during National’s reign all is fine.  But Keith Ng has elegantly deconstructed Joyce’s claims in a number of tweets which showed how inane Joyce’s claims are.

It is noticeable that Joyce has ignored the predicted doubling of greenhouse gas emissions.  Instead he has focussed much more narrowly on carbon intensity which essentially is a different measure.

The tweets contain a treasure trove of information which establish conclusively that Joyce does not know what he was talking about.

The first matter that Ng raised was that energy emissions (not agriculture) have decreased since 2008.  The information is contained in the MFE’s publication New Zealand’s Greenhouse Gas Inventory 1990–2011 and Net Position – Snapshot April 2013. The report notes that there are are a number of reasons for the decrease in energy emissions since 2008. These include:

  • a reduction in the use of coal (gas replaced coal due to the commissioning of a combined cycle gas turbine at the Huntly Power Station) and an increase in the use of renewable electricity generation (geothermal, wind and hydro-electric).
  • a decrease in electricity demand after the Canterbury earthquake in 2011.
  • a decrease in road transport emissions between 2008 and 2009 due to the economic downturn.
  • a decrease in the release of methane emissions from coal mining activities from 2010 to 2011. This was a result of the sealing of the Pike River mine following an explosion and the suspension of coal production at Spring Creek mine on the West Coast of the South Island.

So unless Joyce agrees that National is responsible for the commissioning of the Huntly gas turbine (initiated under Labour in 2007), the Christchurch earthquake, the GFC and the Pike River disaster then National deserves no credit for reductions.

Ng also pointed out that GHG intensity has been declining since the early 1990s, is a feature of the growth of the service sector, had little to do with the ETS and it is irrelevant.  The amount of GHG being produced is the problem, not the intensity compared to industrial output.

And the contention ignores methane production.  I presume that Joyce will dispute that cow farts are causing climate change.

The proposed reduction in tax rates as compensation for anticipated price increases is interesting.  I suspect that everyone except for heavy polluters, farmers and climate change deniers will give the whole package some consideration.

Some are criticising Labour for not having a response to the policy. I personally think some careful consideration is required before any formal comment is offered.

Having said this it is good to get away from personalities and back to policy discussions. This is where the left excels and the right is weak.

128 comments on “The Green’s climate change policy”

  1. Colonial Viper 1

    1. A goal of net carbon neutrality by 2050.

    Well I think this will be very easy to achieve as energy depletion and Mother Nature will probably IMO make it happen, irrespective of any governments policy.

    I expect access to liquid fuels from crude oil to become significantly restricted by ~2030 (e.g. general rationing unless for approved special uses), NG to follow suit around 2040 (although Russia and Iran probably have gas to last until 2060). Peak global coal will have occurred by then, too.

    • Paul 1.1

      The book Climate Wars by Gwynne Dyer is a wake up call.

      A terrifying glimpse of the none-too-distant future, when climate change will force the world’s powers into a desperate struggle for advantage and even survival.

      Dwindling resources.
      Massive population shifts.
      Natural disasters.
      Spreading epidemics.
      Drought.
      Rising sea levels.
      Plummeting agricultural yields.
      Crashing economies

      Michael Ruppert’s film Collapse’ is also sobering.
      Review
      http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1503769/
      Trailer

      • Colonial Viper 1.1.1

        I find it sad that Michael Ruppert took his own life recently. He had a lot more to contribute.

        A terrifying glimpse of the none-too-distant future, when climate change will force the world’s powers into a desperate struggle for advantage and even survival.

        I think that the globalised class of power elite are well into their planning and positioning for this, hence their building of a massive security and surveillance state, normalising the use of militarised police and para-military tactics on home soil against ordinary citizens, and in the US legalising the mass indefinite detention of entire classes of people should they be deemed a threat to “national security” (a.k.a. a threat to the security of the power elite).

        • phillip ure 1.1.1.1

          and you don’t think that we are being set up as a bolthole for them..?

          ..i mean..where better..?

        • Paul 1.1.1.2

          Apocalypse, Man: Michael C. Ruppert on World’s End

          Abby Martin’s Personal Tribute to Investigative Journalist Michael C. Ruppert

    • dave 1.2

      i cant figure out what part of greens policy is different to labours or nz first all very much on the same wave legnth

  2. karol 2

    I think that the Greens have re-started the discussions on this issue and policy – put it back on the agenda. Hopefully it’ll gain momentum as the months progress.

    • Clemgeopin 2.1

      Yes, it is an uphill task to convince the public. Lots of education, publicity and effort will be needed to achieve that. I had a family/friends brunch gathering this morning with 8 adults +children. At one time, when the conversation veered to politics, I asked if any of them were thinking of giving their vote to the Internet party. Three of the adults who have been voting Greens in the earlier few elections indicated that they were excited by the Internet party. Two of those said they ‘may’ give their vote to them. One was certain. I found that interesting. The next few polls will show how the wind is blowing for all parties.

      • karol 2.1.1

        Push polling? So you didn’t ask how many were thinking of voting Green, or Labour? Or even just ask who they are thinking of voting for?

        • Clemgeopin 2.1.1.1

          No, it wasn’t a ‘polling’ and definitely not a ‘push’ one. I was just curious to see what my own circle of family/friends thought of the new party. Don’t read too much into it.

      • weka 2.1.2

        “Yes, it is an uphill task to convince the public. Lots of education, publicity and effort will be needed to achieve that.”

        I think we are nearly at the top of the hill. That Norman can make a statement such as “climate change is the most important issue of our time and possible of all time” suggests there has been a big shift in NZ in recent years. Even a few years ago the GP couldn’t have said such a thing (even though they knew it was true). More people are ready now, and many people want to do the right thing and want the govt to provide them with the means to do it. I’m not saying all of NZ is on board, but we are much further on than we were.

        The question isn’t who will vote for the IP or the GP. It’s whether the IP supports the GP policy. The potential for cooperation here is huge.

        • Tracey 2.1.2.1

          The policy announcements by the greens over the last few weeks, imo, is shoring up those already pledging to vote green.

          There is room for the greens and imp. I wonder, historically, where do undecideds go to on election night, swordfish?

          • karol 2.1.2.1.1

            Well, hopefully the IMP will attract more of the politically disengaged with their anti-establishment stance.

            I also think it’s very important for the Greens to maintain a strong parliamentary presence for the longer term future. They have some very well worked and well considered policies and practices, and a clear sense of left wing values.

            Beyond the (very important) desire for regime change, and opening politics up to younger people, I’m not sure there’s a consistent set of left wing values/policies incorporated in the IP position.

          • Colonial Viper 2.1.2.1.2

            There is room for the greens and imp. I wonder, historically, where do undecideds go to on election night, swordfish?

            If they vote at all, they will tend to go for National or Labour. Many people say they will vote Green, but will finally defer to a “safer” option when at the polling booth, usually Labour.

            The Greens are no longer the protest vote party as they are respectable now; NZF still plays that role however thanks to Winston’s incessant battering of the establishment (which he is a long term part of, of course), so IMP might get those last minute protest/anti-establishment votes.

          • Naki man 2.1.2.1.3

            “There is room for the greens and imp”
            I think you mean gimp.

        • Clemgeopin 2.1.2.2

          Yes, and that is a good thing.

      • Northshoreguynz 2.1.3

        Similar experience this morning. Mana is gaining some traction amongst those on benefits wanting work, and the low paid struggling to meet rent.

  3. Macro 3

    Just to reiterate the comment I made yesterday about this policy on another thread:

    For those who are worried that a Carbon tax will not reduced emissions – it will.
    For those who fear that it will lead to economic ruination – it won’t.
    For those that say it will stop “growth” in it’s tracks (as if it that is a big deal) – it won’t.
    For those who think that NZ will become uncompetitive because of it – think again.
    For those who want to know the truth about how such a tax and dividend scheme really works and just how an economy is doing that introduced a very similar one in the past –
    look here:
    http://www.motherjones.com/environment/2014/03/british-columbia-carbon-tax-sanity

    To quote from the last paragraph of the above link”

    “BC can boast of the crown jewel of North American climate policy. “BC now has the lowest fuel use in Canada, the lowest tax rates in Canada, and a pretty healthy economy,” says the University of Ottawa’s Stewart Elgie. “It works.” “

    • Colonial Viper 3.1

      “revenue neutral” taxes designed to encourage certain kinds of behaviours while keeping money in local communities is quite a neat tool.

      However, I’m pretty cautious with regards to assessing the Canada/B.C. situation. The wealthy in B.C. have experienced the economic benefits from a multi-year housing bubble, and I can see no easy and realistic way a median working household with 3 children can reduce their car use by 17% unless one of the parents loses their job and doesn’t have to go to work any more. Further more, Canada’s economy as a whole is receiving a massive and ongoing boost from extremely dirty tar sands extraction.

      • Macro 3.1.1

        Sales of refined Petroleum products in BC have declined by 15% since 2008 – the year the Carbon Tax was introduced – whereas the sales of refined petroleum products for the rest of Canada have remained static.

        Further quote:

        “The tax has actually become quite popular. “Polls have shown anywhere from 55 to 65 percent support for the tax,” says Stewart Elgie, director of the University of Ottawa’s Institute of the Environment. “And it would be hard to find any tax that the majority of people say they like, but the majority of people say they like this tax.”

        The fact is that it works. People begin to look at alternatives to simply hopping in a car to go someplace. This leads to an increasing demand for better Public Transport which can be financed by reducing expenditure on road making and carbon tax. Businesses begin to look seriously at how they too can be less reliant on carbon. Locally produced goods may be initially more expensive but become more attractive when when the cost of transportation of cheaper goods from a distance is taken into account. As you are well aware – the cost of oil is now in free flight following peak. This only intensifies the attention of people onto the issue. By beginning now we can be at the head of the pack in terms of adaptation.

      • Bill 3.1.2

        I can see no easy and realistic way a median working household with 3 children can reduce their car use by 17%

        Car pooling. Walking. Bicycles. Public transport.

        • Colonial Viper 3.1.2.1

          I don’t know what greater Vancouver and rural BC is like in terms of public transport and walkability etc. but although I recognise it is theoretically possible I still can’t see it. The only thing which brings those kinds of reductions that dramatically is an economic recession and people ceasing doing as much.

          BTW Zero Hedge is suggesting that petrol (gasoline) use in the USA may have fallen by a far larger number (due to recession, not a carbon tax), possibly somewhere between a catastrophic 2/3 and 3/4 over 15 years:

          http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-05-30/us-gasoline-consumption-plummets-nearly-75

          • Macro 3.1.2.1.1

            BC had a very detailed action plan which went along with their Carbon Tax
            Quite an impressive document:
            http://www.livesmartbc.ca/attachments/climateaction_plan_web.pdf

            • Colonial Viper 3.1.2.1.1.1

              Since that document was released BC has had a gas fracking boom and is now planning to build a dozen LNG facilities to export millions of tonnes of LNG to Asia.

              http://www.nytimes.com/2014/05/29/business/energy-environment/for-british-columbia-gas-boom-presents-a-conundrum.html?_r=0

              • Macro

                Yes there is fierce debate going on at this very point in time – so I don’t think you can contribute their economic performance over the past 8 years to that which is occurring now!
                The gas issue is something that will need to be carefully considered. Asia has its needs for energy just as every one else. Gas is less “dirty” from carbon emissions than Coal but still no where ideal. Does Canada export gas to energy hungry Asia or does Asia import coal from elsewhere? Personally I would hope that they don’t.

          • weka 3.1.2.1.2

            As well as individual actions (bike, walk, ride share etc), there are community and societal restructuring. Relocalisation is a big part of it. If you have a place to by food that is within walking/biking distance, then that changes a lot. Even more so if you can walk/bike to work, church, movies, library etc. These are not difficult to do in terms of infrastructure, it’s more about mentality at this stage.

            • Colonial Viper 3.1.2.1.2.1

              All for relocalisation, but its something which takes 5-10 years to get happening so I don’t think its responsible for the quick drop in fuel use in BC.

              • weka

                Yeah sorry, I was meaning what could be done.

              • Macro

                It’s not a quick drop CV have a look at the link I gave and the graph. There was a drop that occurred across the country in 2008 which was obviously the result of the GFC, but that was not sustained in the rest of Canada – only in BC and their use of petroleum has continued to decline whereas the rest of Canada has returned to the previous levels.

        • dave 3.1.2.2

          if look at the u s right now there whole infer structure is car centric whole community’s are stranded by rising fuel costs stuck in suburbs as energy poverty bites . as a labour party member I agree with the greens we need to re think the way we live where we work and the way our economy is run because the so called norm is no longer an option

  4. gee..!…thanks winston peters..!

    (question for peters from media..:

    ..’will you block/stop a carbon-tax..again..?’..)

  5. Bill 5

    What exactly does ‘carbon neutrality’ mean? I suspect that strange, necessarily bullshit and rather elastic calculations will be rolled out and used to justify ongoing CO2 emissions on the basis that ‘carbon sinks’ are soaking up what is being produced.

    Curious as to how people reckon all this stacks up against the need to have hit zero carbon emissions from energy back in 2010 if we were to have avoided 2 degrees average surface warming while giving Annex 2 countries a fair ‘crack at the whip’ in laying in infrastructure? We are now about a year away from blowing away a 50/50 chance of avoiding 2 degrees warming due to our growing emissions and are on track for 4 degrees + average surface temperature increase. That equates to the end of any recognisable civilisation

    Anyway. At least there might be the beginnings of a necessary conversation off the back of this policy announcement. That would be good.

    • Tracey 5.1

      sadly bill, most humans dont want to believe in anything catastrophic, until the rain has fallen for weeks, or the asteroid hits, or the earthquake… And the panic passes

    • Macro 5.2

      Carbon neutrality means that we emit no more carbon than we sequester. But as you rightly point out its way too late to stop 2 degrees of warming, and 4 is looking more and more likely.

      • Bill 5.2.1

        Carbon neutrality means that we emit no more carbon than we sequester.

        And we have no large scale sequestration technology. And we don’t know how to calculate agricultural emissions. And we can’t calculate natural sequestration rates/amounts. And even our energy emissions are fudged (international shipping/international flights).

        Soooo…’carbon neutrality’ means absolutely nothing at all in the real world. Although, as I suggested in my original comment, that’s just perfect for bandying bullshit calculations around to ‘show’ that our fossil based emissions can continue. It also allows for no heed to be paid to the fact that warming rides on the back of cumulative emissions rather than emission rates.

        • Colonial Viper 5.2.1.1

          “Carbon neutrality” is good for another couple of rounds of academic papers however, and is nice lingo for politicians, central bankers and corporates playing us along in their big game of ‘pretend and extend’.

        • Draco T Bastard 5.2.1.2

          And we have no large scale sequestration technology.

          They’re called trees.

          And we don’t know how to calculate agricultural emissions.

          We’re working on it and already have a ballpark figure.

          And we can’t calculate natural sequestration rates/amounts.

          Yes we can.

          Soooo…’carbon neutrality’ means absolutely nothing at all in the real world.

          It means no net increase in atmospheric carbon.

          • weka 5.2.1.2.1

            Trees, and perennial crops and farming practices that increase soil (of a certain kind that will hold and cycle the carbon). They are all only useful if we also reduce emissions.

            http://conference.bioneers.org/agriculture-and-climate-change-an-interview-with-darren-doherty/

            You have to understand the different kinds of carbon and the states of carbon soils….

            Bioneers: Are you saying compost and cover crops are not effective ways to sequester carbon?

            Darren: You might increase your net soil carbon quite heavily in the first few years by the application of compost, and all of the aforementioned methods, but will that last over the longer term? The answer is quite clearly no. Great techniques, great to do, but what we need more of is long-chain carbon. It’s largely delivered in the form of polysaccharide exudate or nutrients released from plant root systems, particularly grasses.

            Where we want the carbon and where farmers can look to increasing their carbon levels overall is in the depth of soil. You can have 10% carbon in the top six inches and 2% in the next 10 inches, and 11⁄2% in the next 10 inches. That’s not going to sustain agriculture over the long term, and the top 6 inches is not where carbon is going to be kept and stored and sequestered. It’s pretty well impossible to get that short-chain carbon down into the depths without a lot of intervention, which requires a lot of fossil fuels. The best way to do that is to get plant roots to penetrate these depths and to put their exudates down in those depths. There are carbohydrates created out of the interaction between water, sunlight and carbon dioxide, and then manufactured by the plants as a residue, and their primary objective is to feed the soil microlife.

            Bioneers: So deep-rooted plants are key to this process.

            Darren: What drives the sustenance and the regeneration of the soil life is the plants. The plants are the conduit between the atmosphere and the lithosphere [the Earth’s deep outer layer, which includes soil]. They keep the lithosphere, the soil, and the rhizosphere, the root zone, alive, because they transfer the energy of the sun, manufacture the sugars as carbohydrates, as long chain carbons, and that’s what feeds the economy of the soil.

          • Bill 5.2.1.2.2

            sheesh draco. So trees are a technology? ffs! And there was me thinking that trees along with everything Weka mentioned were more suited to being under natural sequestration rates

            Meanwhile, no net increase in atmospheric carbon leaves us fucked. We have to decrease the amount of atmospheric carbon if possible…through adding fuck all extra to what’s there and hoping to fuck it gets naturally sequestrated quick enough….before we get ‘cooked’. (Unless you know of some sequestration technology (ie, not trees etc) that can be operated on a large scale)

            • Draco T Bastard 5.2.1.2.2.1

              We have to decrease the amount of atmospheric carbon if possible…

              That would require being carbon negative and, yes, it’s probably what we need to do.

            • weka 5.2.1.2.2.2

              “And there was me thinking that trees along with everything Weka mentioned were more suited to being under natural sequestration rates”

              Sorry to quibble, but I would call it maybe not technology but at least human generated rather than natural. Sure we can leave nature to grow its own trees, but that will take time that we don’t have (and we need to be doing stuff in addition to what nature is doing anyway). What I was referring to is intentional sequestration from human activity eg farming (either perennial cropping or food and other forestry). When we apply sustainability technology we can speed up sequestration.

              Obviously there are overlaps too.

          • Colonial Viper 5.2.1.2.3

            They’re called trees.

            They aren’t a very stable carbon sink. Coal on the other hand is a great carbon sink. Holds the carbon in for 100,000 years without blinking. Trees and their remnants won’t usually last that long. Apart from things like forest fires every few decades, there’s no economic case in the present system to set aside additional land for growing new trees on and to not touch it indefinitely. And AFAIK net tree coverage globally consistently shrinks year after year after year.

            • weka 5.2.1.2.3.1

              “there’s no economic case in the present system to set aside additional land for growing new trees on and to not touch it indefinitely”

              Food forestry and sustainable forestry for building?

              There is plenty of spare land in NZ (assuming it doesn’t all get converted to dairy farms).

              • Colonial Viper

                There is plenty of spare land in NZ

                I’d be interested in what you interpret as being spare land.

                NZ land use is well documented and I don’t see much “spare land” lying around unless we are willing to go in and change the nature and characteristics of a lot of reserves and conservation land.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  I’d be interested in what you interpret as being spare land.

                  Everything we don’t need to provide food for ourselves.

                  In other words, we need to turn a lot of farms back into forest.

                  • I do agree about growing trees and especially creating food forests. I’ve just got back from the Heaphy Track and the number of trees knocked down was amazing – looked like pick up sticks in places – sure overall a small percentage but it would have to be considered as more extreme weather events occur – more big wind events, more rain/slips and so on.

                • weka

                  “I’d be interested in what you interpret as being spare land.

                  NZ land use is well documented and I don’t see much “spare land” lying around unless we are willing to go in and change the nature and characteristics of a lot of reserves and conservation land.”

                  There is a lot of DOC land that could be reforested to natives. Then there is land owned by councils and central govt that is not ‘in use’ eg lots of land held by LINZ (road reserve alone would be significant), town reserves that are just grass currently etc.

                  Then there is land in the high country, and places like Central Otago, where farming is pretty marginal and would be better transitioned to a sustainable model that included either forestry or perennial cropping (polyculture). Plus land still to be allocated in tenure reivews or leasehold farms. I think there is a lot of land in places that simply isn’t in any kind of ‘use’ at all, but is prevented from reforesting because of council policies on broom and gorse. This is true in Central, so I assume it’s true in other places with similar climates or land histories eg Marlborough.

                  I’m thinking of other places where the climate isn’t so harsh where people are buying rural land and either letting it regenerate or regnerating intentionally to forest. Might not be happening so much now that land prices are crazy.

            • just saying 5.2.1.2.3.2

              …there’s no economic case in the present system to set aside additional land for growing new trees on and to not touch it

              Coppicing. We can keep the trees alive and harvest them repeatedly without hurting the trees. Lots of natives are very suitable for this purpose. Win/win. Another traditional technique that is making comeback.

              http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coppicing

              • weka

                nice one js.

              • Colonial Viper

                And what do you generally use this nice carbon sink coppiced wood for? Oh yeah, firewood.

                • weka

                  It’s not mandatory though. We can use timber for whatever we want.

                  btw, firewood, when properly managed via good forestry and processing of firewood, and efficient burners, is one of the few carbon neutral energy sources on the planet.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    It’s not mandatory though. We can use timber for whatever we want.

                    Coppiced wood is usually much smaller in diameter so the range of building uses it is suitable for is very limited.

                    btw, firewood, when properly managed via good forestry and processing of firewood, and efficient burners, is one of the few carbon neutral energy sources on the planet.

                    Yes indeed. But that characteristic also makes it useless as a carbon sink to offset fossil fuel use.

                    Turning the wood into charcoal before using it as fuel can be a bit more efficient, but not by that much.

                    • weka

                      We can build buildings from coppiced bamboo. We can also build buildings from coppiced trees (roundwood framing). Many things other than buildings that are durable can be made from coppiced wood.

                      And js didn’t suggest that all forestry be coppicing.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      All those things are theoretically possible but we would have to train up a new generation of builders architects designers to build with bamboo and also with round wood framing.

                      Not saying it can’t be done but NZ has no expertise out there to do this, and we can barely organise to build standard housing as it is.

                    • Tracey

                      as opposed to the weedy end of pinus radiata currently used in nz buildings…

                    • KJT

                      CV, as a former builder, and having designed a few houses as well, I can assure you that we do have the expertise.

          • mickysavage 5.2.1.2.4

            Agreed Draco.

            Professor Euan Mason (Canterbury School of Forestry) has estimated that if a third of the planet’s area that has been deforested was reforested then our atmosphere could return to a CO2 concentration of 280 ppm.

            Makes you wonder, more forests and trees, cooler climate …

            http://hot-topic.co.nz/why-nzs-emissions-trading-scheme-is-failing-and-how-we-could-fix-it/

            • Colonial Viper 5.2.1.2.4.1

              Professor Euan Mason (Canterbury School of Forestry) has estimated that if a third of the planet’s area that has been deforested was reforested

              See that sounds very reasonable and do-able. Reassuringly so.

              Right up to the point that you have to tell the good folks of the Waikato that you’re now going to take 1/3 of their land off them because you want to plant trees there instead.

              I’m assuming Tainui will want to have a few words with the Government around these mandatory plans as well.

              • weka

                What, as opposed to telling the good folks of NZ that you’re not going to take 1/3 of their land off them to create a diary sewer, er, I mean farms?

                What mandatory plans?

                • Colonial Viper

                  People who sold their land for dairy conversions got handsomely compensated for it in cold hard cash. Lots of it. And in those transactions there was a willing buyer and a willing seller.

                  Of course, the NZ Government has nationalised land before en masse, hundreds of thousands of hectares of it at the stroke of a pen.

                  Shall we go down that route again?

                  • weka

                    Ok, so when you said the good folks of the Waikato, you actually meant a select few farm owners.

                    I haven’t read Mason’s article yet, but there are other ways of achieving change than land confiscation. Although land confiscation seems entirely on the cards when the shit hits the fan. For which we already have the Public Works Act.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Ok, so when you said the good folks of the Waikato, you actually meant a select few farm owners.

                      No, I meant 1/3 of the land of the Waikato (and every other NZ district), and at a guess in the Waikato that might affect roughly 2000 farmers/farming families.

                      And by the way, why do you think townies would be exempt from losing 1/3 of their sections to tree planting?

                      Although land confiscation seems entirely on the cards when the shit hits the fan. For which we already have the Public Works Act.

                      Yes. It would have to be a “compulsory sale and purchase” of land i.e. with compensation.

                    • weka

                      I don’t.

                      Did Mason suggest land confiscation?

                    • KJT

                      I think you will find that most normal urban sections already have a quarter to a half of the section in gardens and or trees.

                      Of course as they intensify building, this will reduce.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      Greater intensification of cities would allow for greater use of parks and thus more trees in the cities. Getting rid of the sprawl is win/win.

        • weka 5.2.1.3

          “Soooo…’carbon neutrality’ means absolutely nothing at all in the real world.”

          It depends. If you are intent on BAU, making money, increasing profit, growing the economy, then yes, you can manipulate carbon neutrality to do that.

          If on the otherhand, you want to subvert that without scaring the horses, you can use a concept like carbon neutrality to transition society to firstly not emitting more than is being sequestered, and then move towards carbon negative. Sneaky Greens 😉 because if they came out and said what really needed to be done, they’d get bugger all votes. This is as much about changing people’s perceptions as it is about physics in the ‘real’ world.

          Haven’t looked at the detail of their policy yet though.

          • Bill 5.2.1.3.1

            Yeah, you might be right. Just that I’m more inclined to take the fcking horses out back and shoot them these days.

          • marty mars 5.2.1.3.2

            Isn’t that the shocker paradox we all live under – “because if they came out and said what really needed to be done, they’d get bugger all votes.” Is anything really better than nothing with this topic? Society imo will transition and society won’t like it a bit, society will fight and thrash around and oppose and pretend and then nature will force the big transition and society will begin to change – but of course by then it will really only be window dressing. JMG says it well (paraphasing) – collapse now and avoid the rush, collapse now while you still have some semblance of control, some options.

            • weka 5.2.1.3.2.1

              I’m feeling more… optismistic would be stretching, but let’s say less pessimistic recently. Things look like they are changing to me eg that the GP can talk opening about AGW being the most important thing and do so in an election year as part of a major policy release. It’s normal now.

              Am with you avoiding the rush, and still think that everythign and anything we can do now will make the collapse easier to manage.

              • Bill

                … still think that everythign and anything we can do now will make the collapse easier to manage.

                You do not and can not manage 150-200km/h winds that have downed your infrastructure, closed your roads and flattened your crops.

                You do not and can not manage prolonged drought and heat wiping livestock, pasture and crops while shutting down your infrastructures (electricity supply, water supply)

                You do not and can not manage x m of rain that washes away your crops, washes out your infrastructure, floods your home, collapses hillsides…

                All you can do or hope to do is to survive. And that’s as much dumb luck as preparedness given the climatic vagaries involved.

                • weka

                  Well it’s all relative isn’t. The conditions you describe are unlikely to arrive all at once or overnight. So to what extent do we adapt? Humans have lived in some pretty extreme situations, precisely because they worked within their environment (ie they managed).

                  To give an example,

                  “You do not and can not manage prolonged drought and heat wiping livestock, pasture and crops while shutting down your infrastructures (electricity supply, water supply)”

                  True if we do not very much between now and then. But if instead we practice and increase drought resistant food growing techniques that aren’t dependend on power and water supply infrastructure, then we will ‘manage’ better than if everything falls over while are are still dependent on it.

                  Of course, we could prepare for x kind of weather and find we get y instead, or we could prepare for x and get x. That’s where luck will come into it. But it still pays to prepare for being able to manage, where x is liveable with prepared for adaptation but not with sudden collapse of power supply.

                  Edit: and, the things we should do to prepare are also the things that will mitigate and possibly sequester.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Psychological and emotional preparations are amongst the most important to make.

                    Defending against massive climate extremes and weather events is difficult of course. But knowing your neighbours, not depending on the supermarket for all your food and not depending on petrol to get you around, already puts you at a massive advantage in an age of resource and energy depletion.

                    • “Psychological and emotional preparations are amongst the most important to make.”

                      I wonder if this is even possible but anything is definitely better than nothing here and you never know it might not happen relatively quickly.

                  • Bill

                    Well it’s all relative isn’t. The conditions you describe are unlikely to arrive all at once or overnight. So to what extent do we adapt?

                    Well, nothing I wrote hasn’t been experienced already. Climate change will involve more extremes than those I mentioned. And we haven’t ‘adapted’ to any of the, for now, infrequent storms, droughts and what have you. And neither has the biological environment we are a part of and dependent upon.

                    Anyway. Basic physical infrastructure was built for the conditions we became used to in the now passing holocene. That won’t be getting adapted…(time, expense, engineering know-how)

                    And insofar as we are biological entities that fit (survival of the fittest) into an evolutionary niche that’s part of a larger biological reality and state that’s not going to be accommodated by a 2 degrees or 4 degrees+ world….

                    • weka

                      I thought we were talking about best case scenarios not worst, or at least allowing that we don’t know yet. Or at least, I am suggesting that there is in fact a point to preparing (see below about food growing). If on the other hand you want to argue it’s too late and we are all fucked then just go ahead and quote Macpherson 😉

                      “And we haven’t ‘adapted’ to any of the, for now, infrequent storms, droughts and what have you.”

                      Actually some people have adapted for things like drought, and I can tell you catagorically that farmers and other food growers in sustainability subcultures are definitely working on adapting to changing climate. The mainstream hasn’t, but that doesn’t mean no-one has.

                      btw, if we look at drought (and I know this is taking things out of the full context), and we look at average tempartures for NZ and add 2C, then we are still within the range of temperatues that humans can grow food in. Humans can grow food in extreme climates. What we can’t do is sustain oil-based, mono-cropped, Monsanto-sponsored agriculture, but then I’m not arguing for that. I’m saying we can increase our resiliency skills and that that better prepares us for managing in the contexts you are talking about if they aren’t at the extreme end.

                      Five minute slide show of the permaculture classic Greening the Desert. Getting food trees established and bearing food within the first year in one of the harshest climates on the planet. They have the least rainfall per head of population in the world. Plus the land in the area has been overgrazed and salinated. If people can grow food there, they will be able to grow food in NZ during prolonged drought.

                      “And neither has the biological environment we are a part of and dependent upon.”

                      The biological environment is adapting all the time, it doesn’t have a choice. I think what you mean is that it won’t adapt fast enough to prevent extinctions if humans don’t change, but that’s a given for worst case. It’s not really relevant to what is being discussed here.

                    • Bill

                      Yeah okay. Drought resistant plants can be grown. But one of the main things that’s going to increase is wind…y’know, the type that rips up trees and flattens crops?

                      And sure, I’m being negative and we could argue hopelessly backwards and forwards on unknowns and likelihoods and what not.

                      But I do want to say this. Adding 2degreesC to average NZ temps has got absolutely nothing to do with imagining a world that’s 2degreesC warmer due to climate change. The 2degreesC is average surface temp. And land is always much warmer than water.

                    • karol

                      I known some of my farmer relatives are using drought resistant grass (in NZ). It was noticeable seeing the fields that have such gras in recent droughts – they remained green while others were brown.

                      It’s an adaptation, but to try to keep going with BAU. Greater adaptations are needed.

                      maf has a whole paper recommending grasses for drought prone areas.

                    • weka

                      Grow crops that are resilient to wind, and you grow them in places where the wind is mitigated. We already do this.

                      “But I do want to say this. Adding 2degreesC to average NZ temps has got absolutely nothing to do with imagining a world that’s 2degreesC warmer due to climate change. The 2degreesC is average surface temp. And land is always much warmer than water.”

                      So with a 2C rise globally, what will happen in NZ?

                    • weka

                      “Drought resistant plants can be grown.”

                      Just need to pick up on this. It’s not simply about growing drought resistant plants. It’s about a completely different way of managing land and water. Plant species selection is part of that, but it’s not enough on its own. Sustainable land management brings in a whole swathe of interlocking techniques and systems that builds in resiliency. Obviously there is an upper limit for wind speed, frequency of flooding, lack of water etc, but that’s still the point – that we are better off preparing, and the preparation is exactly what we should be doing to mitigate AGW.

                      Karol, it’s true that better species selection is happening (and let’s note that organic farmers in NZ were doing this 3 decades and more ago), but MAF and the mainstream sciences are still geared towards export production not local food growing, and are therefore not sustainable. When we switch to growing food locally all sorts of things change, including that we don’t have to rely on large scale open paddocks that are prone to drought. We can build food growing systems geared around the local environment, geography and climate, and they are much more robust.

                      Here’s a look at a mixed perennial/annual polyculture system for feeding livestock in Western Australia,

                      http://www.small-farm-permaculture-and-sustainable-living.com/livestock_feeding_systems.html

                    • Bill

                      So with a 2C rise globally, what will happen in NZ?

                      Temperatures in excess of what you’d get from a uniform planetary 2C+ rise in surface temperature. Not as much above 2C+ as larger land masses though. And along with that ‘stuck’ weather patterns (to do with jet stream amplitude changing)…so longer, hotter droughts and heatwaves and much more rain falling over shorter periods than now and then much more energy seeking balance in the overall weather system (ie, much bigger winds).

                      Throw all that at infrastructure and many roads will not be re-opened as we currently expect after slips nor electric/water supplies reconnected as we currently expect, nor roof repairs carried out as per current expectations.

                      Beyond that, who knows?

                    • weka

                      “Temperatures in excess of what you’d get from a uniform planetary 2C+ rise in surface temperature. Not as much above 2C+ as larger land masses though. And along with that ‘stuck’ weather patterns (to do with jet stream amplitude changing)…so longer, hotter droughts and heatwaves and much more rain falling over shorter periods than now and then much more energy seeking balance in the overall weather system (ie, much bigger winds).”

                      Just to stick with food growing, the only thing that strikes me as being really problematic there is the big winds. You have an event that takes out trees and it’s a long haul to restore that. We don’t lose forests with the big winds we already have, but I would guess that planting more in sheltered places would be smart (and soon).

                      ‘Drought’ is a relative thing. Much of the drought in NZ is caused by land management, or by trying to grow certain things in the wrong climate/geography. We can look at places like Texas, where fully grown trees are already dying, but again, this is to do with what they are doing with the land there, and the water table, and stocking rates etc. In various droughts in the past 30 years, there have always been farmers in NZ that have been ok, because they were farming differently. If the whole area had been farming differently, there wouldn’t have been a ‘drought’.

                      Increased rainfall is problematic in some places but not others. But often the problems are again caused by humans. If you chop down all the trees and flatten the land then the water will run over that very quickly and take topsoil with it. It will wash away any land not stabilised and gouge out tracks causing more erosion. On the other hand, if you plant out riparian zones with multi-species, and put breaks in the smaller water courses, then the water slows down and seeps into the land, which is exactly where you want it (esp if the rain events are infrequent).

                      None of this is rocket science. I’m less worried about how ability to prepare and manage than I am about whether we will actually do it.

                    • adam

                      I’d say the horse has bolted. If one was cynical, Kyoto was really was the last chance. We have no idea what the change will be, but a change is a coming. And it will restore us to pre-industrial population levels quickly is my guess. And a type of thuggery will win out.

  6. Lefty 6

    If you really wanted to reduce emissions you would identify some activities that are unnecessary and produce a lot of emissions and make them unlawful.

    If you then wanted to reduce them further you would identify another set of useless activities and eliminate them.

    The sort of activities I am talking about include the production and operations of pollution producing luxury items (like jet skis, over- powered motor vehicles and privately owned helicopters and airplanes). We could stop producing unnecessary packaging, cut back on military operations, cease intensive livestock farming and stop mining coal. Many other harmful and/or essentially useless activities could readily be identified and stopped without reducing our standard of living in the least.

    Of course there would be some resistance to this approach but I suspect it would not be as strong as it is to carbon tax as most people would hardly notice it. It would also be transparent and easy to understand. Anybody can relate to the idea that we need to stop doing things that are harmful to them but taxation is always more difficult to get your head around, particularly when everybody knows the rich manage to find a way of getting around any type of tax. I suspect in the case of a carbon tax they would simply pass on costs making both necessary and luxury goods more expensive. This would mean a carbon tax would essentially be a very regressive tax. Trying to make up for it by giving tax back in other areas does not really work as we have seen with GST.

    Carbon taxes fail to discriminate between useful and useless activities, let the rich off the hook, and like all taxes are unreliable in terms of results and prone to producing unforeseen consequences.

    • Colonial Viper 6.1

      Clever

      Supply of potable water is critical; supply of 18 year old scotch whisky is not.

    • Clemgeopin 6.2

      Hard to enforce around the world.

      How about stopping people from breathing,belching and farting?…and will it all make a difference?

      What is better is to go for renewable energy methods.

      • Colonial Viper 6.2.1

        Not sure why you are trying to draw parallels between burning up hundreds of millions of tonnes of fossil fuels making and shipping around useless trinkets, and the very necessary activities of people breathing and farting.

        What is better is to go for renewable energy methods.

        If we do that we can cushion the blow, but even a rapid shift in renewable energy generation still means the end of the high speed high luxury globalised economy and a transition to a generally slower and harder world.

      • weka 6.2.2

        “Hard to enforce around the world.”

        We (as in NZ) don’t have to enforce anything. We have to walk the talk, and then lobby the parts of the world where that will have the most effect. Am pretty sure that if enough countries lead the way, others will follow. Either way, we will eventually be forced into change by nature, and the closer we get to that the more visible that will be and the easier to convince people to change. Best we prepare now though.

        • Clemgeopin 6.2.2.1

          I certainly agree with that, but we should not go over board with crazy, impractical. silly, stupid ideas and schemes….(at least not too fast!)

          • weka 6.2.2.1.1

            What sort of crazy things do you mean Clem?

            • Colonial Viper 6.2.2.1.1.1

              Only revolutions in the neoliberal direction are permitted, apparently.

            • Clemgeopin 6.2.2.1.1.2

              As someone here advocated banning jet skis, private helicopters, industries, 18 year old scotch whiskey etc. You need to get voters’ SUPPORT and get elected. Wishful ideas don’t help you get there. Without getting elected, all extreme impractical ideas are just that, ideas.

              • Colonial Viper

                Yep. Which is why there will be no political solution available to avoid major climate change nor for avoiding civilisation disrupting energy depletion.

                As John Michael Greer suggests, we are in the closing vice jaws of a predicament for which our national level institutions and leadership will not be able to resolve and you have outlined just some of the reasons why.

                Face it, NZers can’t even agree on joint sacrifices to pull 300,000 Kiwi kids out of poverty and that’s something right here right now; trying to painfully deal with something which is decades down the track – no way.

                The political and corporate classes will just continue their game of pretend and extend.

      • Tracey 6.2.3

        so breathing belching and farting are the same as drinking scotch in your world?

        • Clemgeopin 6.2.3.1

          My world is your world.

          So you want to stop people drinking 18 year old scotch? What about the 15 year old scotch?

          • Tracey 6.2.3.1.1

            is that the best you can do? A hint of nimbism there clem

            • Clemgeopin 6.2.3.1.1.1

              No, not nimbyism as whiskey is not my preferred drink.

              My point was in the name of environment or in saving the world, the Greens or their loose cannon extremist crazies should not put forward nutter types of silly proposals. My question was legitimate: If the 18 year old whiskey were to be banned, then why not a 15 year old? How do you decide what vintage is ok and what isn’t? This is the sort of stuff that makes people, including me cautious and weary.

    • Bill 6.3

      If you really wanted to reduce emissions you would identify some activities that are unnecessary and produce a lot of emissions and make them unlawful.

      If you then wanted to reduce them further you would identify another set of useless activities and eliminate them.

      I’ve been saying something similar for quite a while now. But…if we leave it to the authorities, then one fine day in the not too distant, people are going to awake to a world where (for example) any access to commercial international passenger air travel has been withdrawn. Meanwhile, the ‘one percenters’ will fly and boat in their private luxury to their hearts’ content (as will politicians because, hey, them’s is important people doing important things!)

      Far better than making some things unlawful, would be for people to withdraw their participation in useless and detrimental market activity. A UBI would help on that front, or such a move could help bring about a UBI.

      edit. and in light of CV’s comment, I’d just like to put it on record that my hand would be up for participating in a workers’ collective involved in the critical production of good malt whisky

      • Colonial Viper 6.3.1

        lol yeah…its one way to productively and pleasantly pass the time in a post industrialising world…also its a very highly barterable/tradeable commodity. Handy.

        Far better than making some things unlawful, would be for people to withdraw their participation in useless and detrimental market activity. A UBI would help on that front, or such a move could help bring about a UBI.

        Yep. Hence their insistence on loading up young people with debt, to ensure compliance with the economic needs of the status quo.

      • weka 6.3.2

        “Meanwhile, the ‘one percenters’ will fly and boat in their private luxury to their hearts’ content (as will politicians because, hey, them’s is important people doing important things!)”

        I’m not so sure. If society is still reasonably intact at that point, I think that there will be huge negatives associated with carbon use to the extent that those people will be treated like pariahs. Interesting to consider how countries will ration carbon at that point.

        • Bill 6.3.2.1

          You’re aware that those fckers jolly ‘one percenters’ (it could be as high as ~5% I guess) are responsible for a huge proportion of CO2 emissions ie, anything between 30 and 60% of the total? I mean, to be fair, airline pilots and such like, plus politicians and globe trotting academics are a part of that small elite when we’re looking at AGW as opposed to just finance.

          And most of the one percent already are fucking pariahs. Very powerful and influential pariahs though, who have politicians and governments in their back pockets. Now, why are they going to change the programme again? You never, ever see them as it is, and only a few of their names are familiar to most people (Koch Brothers, that Aussie woman Rhienhart? etc)

          • weka 6.3.2.1.1

            Ah, ok. I thought you were talking about people like KDC, Peter Jackson, the PM.

            I still don’t think that the 1% you are talking about are pariahs.

            I agree with you about not leaving it to the authorities. My own personal approach is to look at what can be done, which is why although I keep an eye on international issues (like how much power the Koch family have), I don’t engage much because it engenders powerlessness. If I look at what can be done here in NZ, there is much that can be done, and all of it will be dependent on asserting and maintaining sovereignty.

            I don’t yet see the path between where we are now, and mass population withdrawing participation in the economy. I can see some of it theoretically (eg when we get shortages), but not yet in the real world. I like the idea though.

          • marty mars 6.3.2.1.2

            As the effects of AGW become more and more visible the 1% will become (through their own devices and basically to continue their financial accumulation as long as possible) heroes to the (western) masses. And those that know the truth will be too busy surviving and trying to set themselves up to effectively challenge the self-declared hero status of the 1%.

            • Colonial Viper 6.3.2.1.2.1

              the 1% will become (through their own devices and basically to continue their financial accumulation as long as possible) heroes to the (western) masses.

              Here’s the irony: after all the raping and pillaging of the people and the world’s resources, the 7 figure sum of fiat currency you manage to stash away in electronic ones and zeroes in that faraway tax haven bank account – chances are you will never get that back. And if you do, in a situation of economic and currency collapse, you might still be able to buy a handbag, a coffee and a sandwich with it.

              • Yes well they didn’t accumulate that 7 figure sum (too low imo) by being nice – they manipulated, used and abused to get it and they’re not going to stop just because the world is collapsing. The minions will want to keep their very small slice of the pie for as long as possible so there will be plenty of people wanting to help – there will be a waiting list.

          • Colonial Viper 6.3.2.1.3

            Bear in mind that the 1%’ers (in NZ they earn $200K+ p.a.) are mostly just well paid professional hacks and lackeys of the actual oligarchic power-elite. The 1%’ers are the CxO’s, the law firm partners etc.

            The oligarchic power elite, they are the 1% of the 1%. 0.01%’ers in other words. Doesn’t quite roll of the tongue though.

            BILL:

            Meanwhile, the ‘one percenters’ will fly and boat in their private luxury to their hearts’ content

            Until the boat crew, flight crew, mansion staff and private security guards decide that it might be quite nice to have free use of the marvellous facilities and decide to mount a bit of a reverse “corporate takeover” of the assets.

            See how precarious the position of the 0.01% is?

            See why they are so insistent on installing a trillion dollar security and surveillance state, ASAP?

            • adam 6.3.2.1.3.1

              You really need to look at the land records in the south island CV. And look at the people who were not born here who own land. I think you will see some interesting names – look high country, central and mid look for american names.

    • mickysavage 6.4

      You would identify some activities that are unnecessary and produce a lot of emissions and make them unlawful

      Or you would focus on activities that provided society benefit and did not pollute. For instance, education enriches lives, owning mass produced junk does not. We need to make sure that market pressure supports individual enrichment and ignores consumerism.

  7. Paul 7

    World ‘on the verge of next mass extinction’

    “We are on the verge of the sixth extinction,” lead author, biologist Stuart Pimm, said. “Whether we avoid it or not will depend on our actions.”

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/world/news/article.cfm?c_id=2&objectid=11266126

  8. dimebag russell 8

    the challenge for the greens is to show us how to do more for less. not an easy trick and prepare us for contingencys and vicisitudes that await.

    • Colonial Viper 8.1

      Maybe the trick is simply to do less. If you do less you immediately consume less of the world’s resources and release less GHGs.

  9. Poission 9

    It is noticeable that Joyce has ignored the predicted doubling of greenhouse gas emissions. Instead he has focussed much more narrowly on carbon intensity which essentially is a different measure.

    Carbon intensity is a good metric as it combines physics with economics(rosenfelds law).It is widely used for comparative analysis (unfcc ) where there is a wide disparity in both emissions and sink data.

    http://www.stats.govt.nz/browse_for_stats/snapshots-of-nz/nz-progress-indicators/home/environmental/greenhouse-gas-intensity.aspx

    • Colonial Viper 9.1

      Sure, it’s a nice measure and you can do lots of clever things with it. But to get back to a 2 deg C warming scenario we now need economic activity with huge negative carbon intensity. Which doesn’t exist.

      To me, measuring carbon intensity is like measuring how much water the titanic is taking on per passenger. Whether its a tad higher or a tad lower hardly matters. The ship is still going down, and there still aren’t enough lifeboats.

    • mickysavage 9.2

      But the only relevant metric is how much greenhouse gas we are producing. The rest is irrelevant and frankly a distraction.

      • Macro 9.2.1

        Totally agree! Joyce is using carbon intensity because with consistent technological improvements – which has nothing to do with National – we are using fossil fuels more efficiently, and it looks good. It’s just propaganda from him and well he knows it.
        Because you can do more with less doesn’t mean that people will do the same or less – they invariably want to do much more. So the efficiencies gained are squandered.

        • Colonial Viper 9.2.1.1

          i.e. Jevon’s Paradox

          • Tracey 9.2.1.1.1

            que?

            • Colonial Viper 9.2.1.1.1.1

              http://ourenergyfutures.org/page-titre-The_Jevons_Paradox-cid-25.html

              The Jevons paradox (not to be confused with the Rebound Effect, which is the reductionistic view of this phenomenon) states that if a system gains the possibility of using more energy, through increases in efficiency, it will use this opportunity to “do more” – exploring new activities and expanding the set of functions, which can be expressed – rather than “doing the same, while consuming less”. This paradox (more efficiency leads to more consumption), stated by Jevons in the first half of the 20th century, has proved right over and over in several applications. This implies that it is very naive to expect that technical improvement in efficiency will lead “per se” to lower consumption of energy. The truth is that sustainability is not a technical issue, but a cultural one.

  10. karol 11

    I see Bradbury is spinning and stirring claiming being positive about Greens while spinning that this climate policy is a strategic move to court the blue green vote – and that ignores all the other Greens polices, especially the youth health one announced by Turei at the weekend.

    • Chooky 11.1

      Actually as a Green voter I thought his contribution rather positive …and the Greens are not immune from criticism…just as no one is…they have made some dumb strategic moves in the past…eg dumping on Winston from a great height 3 days before a crucial General Election inwhich the Helen Clark govt lost because her coalition partner NZF failed by a couple of hundred votes to get in

  11. Chooky 12

    My apologies to the Greens – why the Carbon Tax is a genius move

    By Martyn Bradbury , June 2, 2014

    “I have to eat some humble organic locally produced pie here. I have always been fairly mean to the Greens in the past over some of their strategic manoeuvres. I have meanly said that they have all the tactical ability of slow growing moss…”

    http://thedailyblog.co.nz/2014/06/02/my-apologies-to-the-greens-why-the-carbon-tax-is-a-genius-move/-

  12. Ennui 13

    “This policy wont make an iota of difference,” said Ennui cynically! “We will definitely burn what we can until it is all gone, its just a matter of how fast.”

  13. Macro 14

    IEA urges Global leaders to take action on reducing Carbon Emissions and increasing Investment on Renewables and efficiency savings.

    “Global investment in fossil-fuel energy continues to outpace new spending on renewable sources, leaving the world on track for temperature increases of at least 3.6 degrees, according to a new report by the International Energy Agency.”

    “Last year, more than $1.1 trillion (A$1.19 trillion) was poured into the extraction, transport and burning of fossil fuels, producing much of the greenhouse gas emissions largely blamed for global warming.
    By contrast, $US250 billion was invested in clean energy sources, such as solar and wind energy, down from the 2011 peak of $US300 billion, the Paris-based IEA said in its inaugural World Energy Investment Outlook study. Energy efficiency efforts attracted another $US130 billion.

    To keep global warming to within 2 degrees of pre-industrial levels – the internationally agreed target – annual investment in low-carbon energy supply would need to rise to almost $US900 billion and spending on energy efficiency needs to exceed $US1 trillion, said the IEA’s chief economist, Fatih Birol.

    “Dependable policy signals will be essential to ensure that these (renewable energy) investments offer a sufficiently attractive risk-adjusted return,” Dr Birol told Fairfax Media.
    Policymakers have “the most important role to play” in driving such investments, he said: “They need to provide clear and credible signals that lower risks and inspire confidence if we are to switch investment to low-carbon sources and energy efficiency at the necessary scale and speed to meet the world’s climate change target.”

    http://www.smh.com.au/environment/climate-change/fossilfuel-reliance-puts-world-on-track-for-36degree-rise-in-temperature-report-20140603-zrvrm.html#ixzz33YCSSI8H

    Groser’s response today to the proposed Carbon Tax on RNZ was as usual smarmy and weasel worded and acknowledged and denied the science all in one go! The man must go!

  14. Populuxe1 15

    So why do the Union of Taxpayers (who neither belong to a union or pay tax) like it then? Obviously something isn’t quite right here.
    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1406/S00013/taxpayers-union-support-green-partys-carbon-tax.htm

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    Along with the Budget itself, Budget day also gives the public a new peek into how the government thinks the country is going to do over the next few years. These are the Treasury’s forecasts, and they sit beneath every… ...
    12 hours ago
  • Fort St
        ...
    Transport BlogBy Patrick Reynolds
    12 hours ago
  • More students but less money
    The overall cut to tertiary education in this year’s budget will cause real harm to students, their families, and communities. The government has cut the amount of money to tertiary education and yet it predicts student numbers will rise. The… ...
    12 hours ago
  • Very brief Budget 2016 note
    Busy afternoon here, but glancing over some of the documents and turning into the House for a bit my first impressions: It seems like the budget a Labour government would pass under similar fiscal circumstances The Prime Minister is a… ...
    DimPostBy danylmc
    13 hours ago
  • Very brief Budget 2016 note
    Busy afternoon here, but glancing over some of the documents and turning into the House for a bit my first impressions: It seems like the budget a Labour government would pass under similar fiscal circumstances The Prime Minister is a… ...
    DimPostBy danylmc
    13 hours ago
  • Mass resistance in France to Labourites’ new anti-worker law
    Game Over – the people have awakened; the attacks of the French social-democrat government (SP) on workers has provoked widespread resistance Article 49.3 of the French constitution essentially allows the government to put through legislation without a vote.  The Socialist Party… ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    14 hours ago
  • No money for housing, more money for spies
    New Zealand currently has a housing crisis, with people being forced to live in cars and garages in Auckland due to a bubble and insufficient state housing. So is the government doing anything about it in today's budget? There's the… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    14 hours ago
  • Polity: Budget 2016: Growth for the country, but not for your family
    Of the 14% of real GDP growth over the next few years, guess how much your family will see? Less than a fifth of it.The forecasts in the Budget show the economy will continue to grow. That’s good, even if… ...
    14 hours ago
  • Polity: Budget 2016: Dull on top, hollow underneath
    This is the Budget you write when you’ve got no new ideas.Today Bill English hands down a Budget that says the words “innovation” and “investment” a lot, but contains not one actual innovative investment to meet the housing crisis, the… ...
    15 hours ago
  • Writing to please the reader’s ear
    I picked this up on Facebook from Writing about Writing. It would be great to have this sort of skill. To be able to make the writing itself attractive, even beautiful, quite apart from the subject. It certainly drives… ...
    16 hours ago
  • Hard News: Things that do us good and ill
    Earlier this month, I attended a conference on the best ways to regulate drugs which are illegal now but might not be so in future. Most of the discussion revolved around cannabis and concerns about the effects of commerce. No… ...
    16 hours ago
  • Mid-week reading: California uber alles, road tolls, apartment design, and election reviews
    I’m back to a mostly normal post-writing schedule, but mid-week reading will continue as an intermittent feature. One of the most interesting things I’ve read recently was Jim Newton’s long interview with California Governor Jerry Brown (in UCLA Blueprint). Brown… ...
    Transport BlogBy Peter Nunns
    16 hours ago
  • Something fishy in Christchurch
    A tweet by Phil Lyth alerted me to a series of Parliamentary written questions from Labour's Megan Woods about Otakaro Ltd, the company the government established to manage the Christchurch rebuild. It seems Otakaro has just changed its constitution, removing… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    16 hours ago
  • Something fishy in Christchurch
    A tweet by Phil Lyth alerted me to a series of Parliamentary written questions from Labour's Megan Woods about Otakaro Ltd, the company the government established to manage the Christchurch rebuild. It seems Otakaro has just changed its constitution, removing… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    16 hours ago
  • Julie Anne Genter: My Budget 2016 wish is fairness
    When my parents first visited me in Auckland ten years ago, they remarked on how there were no homeless people on the streets. Coming from Los Angeles, they were used to seeing the impacts of horrendous inequality and a lack… ...
    frogblogBy Julie Anne Genter
    16 hours ago
  • Drawn
    A ballot for a member's bill was held today, and the following bill was drawn: Our Work Our Future Bill (Andrew Little) The bill is a simple one which would require MBIE to amend government procurement rules to favour bids… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    16 hours ago
  • Timing is Everything
    I was asked give a Canterbury perspective on whether I expected government services to be cut to fund tax cuts in 2017. The answer is not as straight forward as the question. In May 2011, only three months after the Christchurch… ...
    Briefing PapersBy Cameron Preston
    17 hours ago
  • Pettiness and transparency
    Last night saw the second reading of Adrian Rurawhe's Official Information (Parliamentary Under-Secretaries) Amendment Bill. Following the select committee phase and a very convincing report by the Ministry of Justice refuting National's constitutional claims, it seemed like the bill would… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    17 hours ago
  • Film review: The Nice Guys
    Ryan Gosling saves The Nice Guys from being overshadowed by some particularly cringeworthy moments. Photo: Supplied It’s fair to say that Ryan Gosling has been sorely missed. After directing Lost River in 2014 and starring in 2015’s The… ...
    17 hours ago
  • Steffan Browning: Pesticide reduction and Organic Growth Strategy in Budget 2016
    Pesticide reduction The Budget is an opportunity for the Government to launch a pesticide reduction strategy that multiplies the Environmental Protection Authority’s (EPA) and the Ministry for Primary Industries’ capacity to reassess pesticides and other toxins.  The Agricultural Compounds and… ...
    frogblogBy Steffan Browning
    17 hours ago
  • International students excluded by programme sell-off
    Tertiary Update Vol 19 No 18 Victoria University’s decision to privatise its foundation studies programme will exclude dozens of international students from the university, say staff and students. The university has confirmed it will outsource its international students’ foundation studies programme to a private company.… ...
    18 hours ago
  • Three things to look for in today’s budget
    Today’s Budget is important for tertiary education because it provides roughly two-thirds of the money for public education (with most of the rest coming from student fees). Often the minister and the media will focus on individual line items that highlight specific issues upon… ...
    18 hours ago
  • Speaker: I am a Really Useful Engine
    A couple of weekends ago, we were getting ready to go try out the new section of Te Araroa tramping track between Paekakariki and Pukerua Bay. Very nice views, I recommend it, though probably not on a really windy day.I went to… ...
    18 hours ago
  • One in 12 PTEs are high risk
    Tertiary education minister Steven Joyce told parliament that the Tertiary Education Commission considers 8 percent of private training enterprises (PTEs) are a high financial risk. Joyce revealed the figure in response to a written question from Labour’s David Cunliffe. He added that… ...
    18 hours ago
  • Minister to Auckland: find more international students
    Tertiary education minister Steven Joyce has told the University of Auckland they need to get more international students rather than seek more public funding. Joyce told Newstalk ZB that the University of Auckland already gets slightly more funding than the other universities. “Because they are… ...
    18 hours ago
  • DIY Touring The World: Australia
    For the Kiwi musician, the grass has always seemed greener in Australia.  In the final episode of DIY Touring The World, A Low Hum's Ian Jorgensen heads to Big Sound - a music industry conference and festival held in Brisbane. Industry… ...
    19 hours ago
  • Notes on P contamination
    About a year ago someone I knew at work told me a story that suddenly seems relevant. They were from China and fairly new to New Zealand, and they were in the process of selling their house and buying another… ...
    DimPostBy danylmc
    19 hours ago
  • The government’s housing message dilemma
    John Key was across the media yesterday, trying to tamp down suggestions the Budget would do anything at all to address the housing “issue” which everyone else in New Zealand has accepted is a crisis. The lines are familiar: there’s… ...
    Boots TheoryBy Stephanie Rodgers
    21 hours ago
  • Legal Beagle: Geoffrey Palmer has decided to write a constitution
    Last year, the Law Foundation made a $10,000 research grant to former Prime Minister Sir Geoffrey Palmer to write about a New Zealand Constitution. But, after more than one recent government investigation ended in only recommendations to keep discussion alive,… ...
    21 hours ago
  • Open letter from Paula Bennett to the State House tenants & homeless of Auckland
    Dear Homeless and others, Please leave. Except for Hosking, there’s too many Auckland media asking hard questions like, “What are your plans?” and “How will you help these people?” It really has been quite a trying couple of weeks for… ...
    My ThinksBy boonman
    21 hours ago
  • Budget day 2016, what we want to see
    Today is budget and while we wait to see what, if any, goodies Bill English will announce, I thought I would list some of the things I’d like to see and what we may actually see. My gut says we… ...
    22 hours ago
  • Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement Amendment Bill
    Press Release – Office of the Clerk Public submissions are now being invited on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement Amendment Bill. The closing date for submissions is Friday 22 July 2016 .Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement Amendment Bill Public submissions are now… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    1 day ago
  • Questions & Answers – May 25
    Press Release – Office of the Clerk Rt Hon WINSTON PETERS (LeaderNZ First): This question is to the Prime Minister and asks: does he stand by all his statementssorry: does he still stand by[ Interruption ] Well, it is… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    1 day ago
  • Budget 2016 – Scoop Full Coverage
    Article – The Scoop Team Scoop will be updating this page with Budget announcements, reaction and analysis once the Budget is released at 2pm. Hit reload to see the latest version. Budget 2016 – Scoop Full Coverage Parliament Live –… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    1 day ago
  • Human sexuality is stupid and confusing
    Dress codes are in the news again. I’ve had my body non-consensually sexualised for so long that I’ve been through all the stages of grief about it – sadness, denial, rage – and I’ve settled on bemusement (that’s a stage of… ...
    TangerinaBy Coley Tangerina
    1 day ago
  • Gordon Campbell: the latest allegations against Helen Clark
    Column – Gordon Campbell According to former PM and current Helen Clark, the allegations leveled at her this week in a Foreign Policy magazine article by the prize-winning UN journalist Colum Lynch have been ‘totally fabricated’ .Gordon Campbell on… ...
    1 day ago
  • In-depth: Experts assess the feasibility of ‘negative emissions’
    This is a re-post from Carbon Brief To limit climate change to “well below 2C”, as nationsagreed to do in Paris last December, modelling shows it is likely that removing carbon dioxide emissions from the atmosphere later on this century will be… ...
    1 day ago
  • A BIG win for the Arctic!
    Amazing news! Today an entire industry including major global brands McDonald’sTescoYoung’s Seafood and Iglo agreed to push back against destruction of our pristine Arctic waters.Together with the Norwegian Fishing Vessel Owners Association, Fiskebåt, which represents the entire Norwegian oceangoing fishing fleet, Russian… ...
    1 day ago
  • Inner East cycle consultation
    Auckland Transport recently consulted on cycle networks for the inner western suburbs of the isthmus. Now they’re doing the same thing but for the inner eastern suburbs. Aucklanders have an opportunity to shape the cycle network in the inner-east… ...
    2 days ago
  • Minister undermines State Sector Act
    25 May 2016 The education minister is undermining the principles of integrity and honesty in teacher appointments by interfering with a legal decision designed to avoid cronyism.Today Hekia Parata introduced a supplementary order paper (SOP) to the Education Legislation Bill attempting… ...
    2 days ago
  • Budget 2016 and our LGBTQI communities
    LGBTI people make up about a tenth of our population, and our communities face a unique set of needs and challenges. These challenges are caused or exacerbated by discrimination, invisibility and barriers to appropriate support. We have a long way… ...
    frogblogBy Jan Logie
    2 days ago
  • Budget 2016 and our LGBTQI communities
    LGBTI people make up about a tenth of our population, and our communities face a unique set of needs and challenges. These challenges are caused or exacerbated by discrimination, invisibility and barriers to appropriate support. We have a long way… ...
    frogblogBy Jan Logie
    2 days ago
  • Paula Bennett’s housing deja vu
    After a week of bad media coverage about homelessness in Auckland, Social Housing Minister Paula Bennett was today forced to act, announcing that she would pay homeless Aucklanders $5,000 to move to the regions (where they'd conveniently be out of… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Mojo Mathers: A better deal for animals in Budget 2016
    Currently we are failing animals in NZ. On the face of it farmed and domestic animals in this country have strong legal protection from abuse, cruelty and neglect. In reality it seems that only the very worst, most extreme cases… ...
    frogblogBy Mojo Mathers
    2 days ago
  • Fluoridation: One small step sideways?
    Fluoridation. Let’s not ignore the elephant in the room – the need to separate scientific review from community consultation. Most health officials and science-minded people welcomed the recent announcement of the government’s plan to transfer decisions on water fluoridation from local… ...
    2 days ago
  • Finding a sense of porpoise
    Being a porpoise looks rubbish.Dolphins look like they have fun. They even look like they seek out fun. Okay, the fixed grins make them seem perpetually happy but let’s be honest - when was the last time you saw a… ...
    2 days ago
  • Member’s Day
    Today is a Member's Day, and one with some real business. First, there's the second reading of Sue Moroney's Parental Leave and Employment Protection (Six Months’ Paid Leave and Work Contact Hours) Amendment Bill, which will hopefully either pass, force… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Metiria Turei: What we need from Budget 2016
    Every family deserves a warm decent home.  Everyone believes that. This housing crisis is just the latest consequence of a Government who puts the interests of the few wealthy people above the needs of NZ families.  Families are doing it… ...
    frogblogBy Metiria Turei
    2 days ago
  • Forcing transparency on Ministerial transport
    One of the perks of being a government Minister is the Ministerial limo - a chauffeur-driven car you can take anywhere. These vehicles are publicly funded and used for public business, so we should be able to see who uses… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Wicklow 2 win unconditional bail
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    RedlineBy Admin
    2 days ago
  • We shouldn’t just forgive, but pay back odious debt
    Over 9,000 people have signed Action Station's petition calling on the government to forgive odious emergency housing debt. The government's response? Nope:Wiping the debt of people who have been staying in motels for emergency accommodation would not be fair to… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Opening up NLTF to all modes
    The Green Party released a new freight policy yesterday. They’re looking at ways to invest to increase safety and reduce carbon emissions: The Safer, Cleaner Freight policy sets a target for moving half of freight on rail… ...
    2 days ago
  • The American Black Movement in the Sixties: Victories and Lost Opportunities
    The Black Power slogan of the 1960s was replaced with empowerment for the black American middle class and burgeoning capitalist layers The reign of the first black president in the United States is coming to an end.  Obama, or O’Bomber… ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 days ago
  • Hard News: Three Dreams
    I have three dreams. One is characteristic, one is recurring and one is singular.The characteristic one is simple in concept: it's me and my friends going places and doing things. In the last one I can recall, there was a… ...
    2 days ago
  • Did you know this about tigers?
    Next in our series, we turn to the king (and queen) of the jungle - the tiger. Here are 10 incredible tiger facts from forests campaigner Richard George:10. Tigers have better short-term memories than humansTigers’ have one of the best… ...
    2 days ago
  • How well do you know the Polar Bear?
    Since the very beginning of Greenpeace, our movement has been fighting to protect some of the world’s most vulnerable animals. And over the years, we’ve learnt some truly incredible things about the magnificent creatures we share this planet with. So… ...
    2 days ago
  • How well do you know the orangutan?
    Next in the series, forests campaigner Richard George shares his 10 favourite facts about one of of our closest living relatives - the orangutan:10. Orangutans are ticklishThere are two kinds of ticklish. There’s the gentle kind that feels itchy and… ...
    2 days ago
  • Income inequality is one of the defining issues of our time
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    Closing the GapBy Ben Smith
    2 days ago
  • Dying For Latvia?
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    2 days ago
  • How much do you really know about turtles?
    I’m Willie and I’m an oceans campaigner here at Greenpeace.Over the years I’ve had the privilege of watching turtles from the bow of Greenpeace ships, and many of my colleagues have encountered these peaceful ocean wanderers far out at sea… ...
    2 days ago
  • How much do you know about whales?
    I’m Willie and I’m an oceans campaigner here at Greenpeace.Over the years I’ve had the privilege of seeing lots of whales, both from the deck of Greenpeace ships, and also on whale-watching trips. I’ve been lucky enough to see massive… ...
    2 days ago
  • Are noisy oceans to blame for beached whales?
    Noise is the most invisible of all the man-made threats to the ocean, but to whales who ‘see’ by hearing, they simply cannot escape it.Water is an excellent medium for relaying sound, enabling some species of whale to communicate across… ...
    2 days ago
  • Sylvia Park growth plans
    Sylvia Park is already Auckland’s largest shopping centre, but it’s likely to get even bigger in the next few years. Kiwi Property, who own the centre, have plans to expand the retail offering, as well as adding office buildings. In… ...
    Transport BlogBy John Polkinghorne
    2 days ago
  • PrintNZ Forum Speakers Enlighten Delegates
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    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    2 days ago
  • Nick Smith: There is NO crisis
    MyThinks has been fielding many questions about Nick Smith. “What’s happening with housing?” “Does Nick Smith know anything about any of his policy areas?” “Why does he look so shifty when he’s telling us what we should think?” These are… ...
    My ThinksBy boonman
    2 days ago
  • Tracking the 2°C Limit – April 2016
    April is starting to come down off the shockingly high anomalies of the first couple of months of this year. GISS is clocking in a still strong warm anomaly of 1.11°C. This is by far the hottest April in the… ...
    2 days ago
  • Fanshawe St Bus Stop improvements
    Occasionally it is small projects that can have a lot of impact on people’s PT experience. With the ever growing number of people working near Victoria Park, an upgrade to the bus stops on Fanshawe St along with improvements to the… ...
    2 days ago
  • Fanshawe St Bus Stop improvements
    Occasionally it is small projects that can have a lot of impact on people’s PT experience. With the ever growing number of people working near Victoria Park, an upgrade to the bus stops on Fanshawe St along with improvements to the… ...
    2 days ago
  • An abuse of the Speaker’s chair
    Last week NewsHub revealed leaked MPI reports which showed that MPI had been turning a blind eye to widespread criminal behaviour in the fishing industry. Today was the first day of Parliament since those revelations, and given their seriousness, it… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • An abuse of the Speaker’s chair
    Last week NewsHub revealed leaked MPI reports which showed that MPI had been turning a blind eye to widespread criminal behaviour in the fishing industry. Today was the first day of Parliament since those revelations, and given their seriousness, it… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Punakaiki Fund invests in Populate
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    Lance WiggsBy Lance Wiggs
    3 days ago

  • How the budget fails new New Zealanders
    Greens co-leader James Shaw was absolutely correct to say the 2016 budget is just papering over the cracks. There’s nothing in this budget to increase wages, address inequal pay for carers or deal with the shocking pay rates and employment… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    10 hours ago
  • Parents will pay more as school budgets frozen
    Parents will pay more for their kids’ education as a result of this year’s Budget after the Government froze operational funding for schools, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “This means schools are effectively going backwards. They will need to… ...
    12 hours ago
  • Sticking Plaster Budget fails the test
    Bill English’s penultimate Budget fails to tackle the structural challenges facing the economy – a housing crisis, rising unemployment, underfunded health and creaking infrastructure, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “This Budget applies a sticking plaster to a compound fracture.… ...
    13 hours ago
  • John Key fails middle New Zealand with no fix for housing crisis, more underfunding of health
    Middle New Zealand has again missed out in this year’s Budget with not a single fix for the housing crisis, and health and education woefully underfunded again, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. “This Budget is just a patchwork… ...
    13 hours ago
  • Labour Bill would back Kiwi jobs
    The Government’s $40 billion of buying power would go towards backing Kiwi businesses and jobs under a Labour Member’s Bill which will be debated by Parliament, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. “My Bill – which was pulled from… ...
    15 hours ago
  • Julie Anne Genter: My Budget 2016 wish is fairness
    When my parents first visited me in Auckland ten years ago, they remarked on how there were no homeless people on the streets. Coming from Los Angeles, they were used to seeing the impacts of horrendous inequality and a lack… ...
    GreensBy Julie Anne Genter
    16 hours ago
  • Steffan Browning: Pesticide reduction and Organic Growth Strategy in Budget 2016
    Pesticide reduction The Budget is an opportunity for the Government to launch a pesticide reduction strategy that multiplies the Environmental Protection Authority’s (EPA) and the Ministry for Primary Industries’ capacity to reassess pesticides and other toxins.  The Agricultural Compounds and… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning
    17 hours ago
  • Steffan Browning: Pesticide reduction and Organic Growth Strategy in Budget 2016
    Pesticide reduction The Budget is an opportunity for the Government to launch a pesticide reduction strategy that multiplies the Environmental Protection Authority’s (EPA) and the Ministry for Primary Industries’ capacity to reassess pesticides and other toxins.  The Agricultural Compounds and… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning
    17 hours ago
  • Minister won’t fess up on wrong figures
    The Minister of Health was caught out telling porkies in Parliament today when he was asked about the number of people getting access to mental health and addiction services, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King. ...
    1 day ago
  • Budget 2016 and our LGBTQI communities
    LGBTI people make up about a tenth of our population, and our communities face a unique set of needs and challenges. These challenges are caused or exacerbated by discrimination, invisibility and barriers to appropriate support. We have a long way… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    2 days ago
  • Budget 2016 and our LGBTQI communities
    LGBTI people make up about a tenth of our population, and our communities face a unique set of needs and challenges. These challenges are caused or exacerbated by discrimination, invisibility and barriers to appropriate support. We have a long way… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    2 days ago
  • Scrambled announcement policy on the hoof
    Paula Bennett’s scrambled desperate announcement that she will pay homeless people to move to the regions is just the latest evidence of the disarray this Government’s housing policy is in, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. “This is policy… ...
    2 days ago
  • Police Minister admits resolution rates fall short of expectation
    Police Minister Judith Collins has admitted in Parliament current burglary resolution rates are not meeting the expectations of our communities, says Labour’s Police spokesman Stuart Nash “Out of 284 police stations in New Zealand in 2015, 24 stations recorded zero… ...
    2 days ago
  • Mojo Mathers: A better deal for animals in Budget 2016
    Currently we are failing animals in NZ. On the face of it farmed and domestic animals in this country have strong legal protection from abuse, cruelty and neglect. In reality it seems that only the very worst, most extreme cases… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers
    2 days ago
  • Metiria Turei: What we need from Budget 2016
    Every family deserves a warm decent home.  Everyone believes that. This housing crisis is just the latest consequence of a Government who puts the interests of the few wealthy people above the needs of NZ families.  Families are doing it… ...
    GreensBy Metiria Turei
    2 days ago
  • Dairy exports fall of 11%: Budget action on diversification needed
    Dairy exports have fallen 11 per cent compared to this time last year, a fall of almost $1.5b, showing the Government must take clear action on diversifying the economy in tomorrow’s Budget, says Labour’s Trade and Export Growth spokesperson David… ...
    2 days ago
  • Investors driving families out of homes in South and West Auckland
    Investors cashing in on skyrocketing Auckland house prices are driving families out of homes in South and West Auckland and causing homeownership rates in some of our poorest suburbs to plummet, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “New analysis shows… ...
    2 days ago
  • Budget must deliver on paid parental leave
    Budget 2016 must deliver 26 weeks paid parental leave by April 2018 – anything less will be short-changing families, says Labour MP Sue Moroney. “My Bill which is before Parliament this afternoon has majority support and does just that. I… ...
    2 days ago
  • Key’s “brain fart” on tax cuts news to English
    John Key didn’t tell his own Finance Minister he was about to go on radio and announce he wanted $3b of tax cuts, just days after Bill English ruled them out, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “In Parliament today… ...
    3 days ago
  • What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 – A better start for our tamariki
    Ensuring the best start for our tamariki is a priority for me in everything I do. And so in Budget 2016, my first budget as an MP, I looking for the Government to make a real investment in the wellbeing… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    3 days ago
  • What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 – A better start for our tamariki
    Ensuring the best start for our tamariki is a priority for me in everything I do. And so in Budget 2016, my first budget as an MP, I looking for the Government to make a real investment in the wellbeing… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    3 days ago
  • Denise Roche: What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 Pt II
    Aotearoa’s new New Zealanders,  come to our country in vulnerable position: – often away from the culture, communities and families they know, sometimes in neighbourhoods without familiar faces and often encountering barriers to employment. With net migration at 50,000+ a… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    3 days ago
  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    3 days ago
  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    3 days ago
  • A great Budget would
    A great Budget would embrace the challenge of our polluted rivers and move the money away from justifying the status quo water rules into cleaning up waterways. A great Budget would take the Ministry for the Environment freshwater budget and… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    3 days ago
  • Budget building materials policy backfires
    On the eve of this year’s Budget official figures show Nick Smith’s Budget 2014 centrepiece to reduce the cost of building materials has backfired, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment officials have spent the… ...
    3 days ago
  • Smarter, Better, Cleaner, Stronger
    This Thursday Bill English will deliver his eighth Budget. Will it continue the trend of previous National budgets, making tertiary education less affordable, putting only token funds into innovation, and subsidising polluters? Budgets aren’t what they used to be. Once… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    3 days ago
  • Govt must come clean on tax cuts in Budget
    National is making a mockery of the Budget process by dangling the promise of tax cuts but failing to include them in the Budget, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “National’s tax cut promises have turned into a farce. One… ...
    4 days ago
  • Grant Robertson Pre-Budget Speech
    Today I want to talk about success. As we know success can come in many different forms, from the fact you all made it here at such an early hour on a Monday, for which I am very grateful, to… ...
    4 days ago
  • Budget must deliver for middle New Zealand
    The Government must ensure next week’s Budget stops the squeeze on middle New Zealand and delivers shared prosperity for all New Zealanders, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. The call follows new research commissioned by Labour that shows working… ...
    5 days ago
  • Our housing emergency – why we have to act
    Marama and Metiria at Homes Not Cars launch On Thursday, Metiria Turei announced the Green Party’s plan to start addressing the emergency housing crisis facing our country. Too many people are without homes right now – homeless. It is the… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    6 days ago
  • Will funding boost for sexual violence services go to the right places?
    This week the Government announced $46million for sexual violence services. This announcement was a result of decades of work by advocates and everyone who submitted to the Select Committee inquiry into funding for sexual violence services that I initiated with… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    7 days ago
  • Will funding boost for sexual violence services go to the right places?
    This week the Government announced $46million for sexual violence services. This announcement was a result of decades of work by advocates and everyone who submitted to the Select Committee inquiry into funding for sexual violence services that I initiated with… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    7 days ago
  • Denise Roche – What I’m looking for in this year’s Budget
    Two of the things I’ll be looking for in the Budget next week are more funding for refugees and for our arts and culture sector. More funding for refugees I’m a strong supporter of the #DoubleTheQuota campaign and its goals… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    7 days ago
  • Denise Roche – What I’m looking for in this year’s Budget
    Two of the things I’ll be looking for in the Budget next week are more funding for refugees and for our arts and culture sector. More funding for refugees I’m a strong supporter of the #DoubleTheQuota campaign and its goals… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    7 days ago
  • Car rego victims must get a refund
    Motorists who have been overcharged for their car registration should get a refund, says Labour’s Transport spokesperson Sue Moroney.  “Minister Nikki Kaye’s ‘faulty risk’ rating scheme has blown up in her face with over 170 different models of car having… ...
    7 days ago
  • Council statement shows they just don’t get it
    The Auckland Council’s statement today shows they don’t understand the problems created by the urban growth boundary, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.  “I have been the first to defend the Auckland City Council when Bill English has been blaming… ...
    7 days ago
  • Inspecting electronic devices a potential privacy threat
    Labour is expressing concern for New Zealanders’ privacy rights as the Government signals Customs will have the power to inspect electronic devices coming across the border, says Labour’s Customs Spokesperson Rino Tirikatene. “We agree that customs officers should have the… ...
    7 days ago
  • The Price of Water
    This week I hosted a public meeting at EIT in Hawkes Bay to discuss how we might put a price on the commercial use of water, so that water may be valued and treated more sustainably. I invited a… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    7 days ago
  • Caption It NZ!
    Today I received a petition from the NZ Captioning Working Group urging the government to legislate for accessibility via closed captioning for deaf and hard of hearing New Zealanders. It was timely because today is the fifth Global Accessibility Awareness… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers
    1 week ago
  • Older Kiwis to miss out on electives
    The Government is not doing enough elective surgery to keep up with New Zealand’s ageing population, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King.  “It’s damning that the targeted national intervention rate for cataract and knee and hip surgery is the same… ...
    1 week ago
  • Most principals say their college is underfunded
    The Government must substantially increase funding for secondary schools in next week’s Budget after a new survey found 86 per cent of principals consider their college under-resourced, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Just 14 per cent of secondary principals… ...
    1 week ago
  • Bill English and Nick Smith on different pages
    The Government’s support for Labour’s policy to remove the Auckland urban growth boundary is good news, but National needs to clarify its position, Labour’s Housing and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Acting Prime Minister has acknowledged our position… ...
    1 week ago
  • Bill English and Nick Smith on different pages
    The Government’s support for Labour’s policy to remove the Auckland urban growth boundary is good news, but National needs to clarify its position, Labour’s Housing and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Acting Prime Minister has acknowledged our position… ...
    1 week ago
  • Labour calls for independent inquiry into illegal fish dumping
    The Labour Party is reiterating its call for an independent inquiry into New Zealand’s fishing industry after two reports revealed the Ministry for Primary Industries turned a blind eye to widespread fish dumping in New Zealand waters, says Labour’s Fisheries… ...
    1 week ago
  • Mt Karangahake and Newcrest Mining
    On Wednesday and Sunday of last week the local residents of the Karangahake mountain in the Karangahake gorge of Hauraki/Coromandel peacefully protested against a gold mining drill rig on private land adjacent to the DOC land. The drilling rig was… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    1 week ago
  • Robbing Aucklanders to pay Rio Tinto
    New Zealand’s national electricity grid stretches the length of the country and contains some 11,803 kilometres of high-voltage lines and 178 substations. It wouldn’t make sense for competing power companies to duplicate and build their own expensive electricity transmission system… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    1 week ago
  • Government should abolish Auckland urban growth boundary
    The Government should rule out any possibility of an urban growth boundary in Auckland Council’s Unitary Plan if it is serious about fixing the housing crisis, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Over 25 years the urban growth boundary hasn’t… ...
    1 week ago
  • Kiwis don’t want iPads for Land deals
     It is outrageous that schools are relying on money and iPads from foreign land investors to meet the learning needs of their students, says Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins.  “Several OIO land applications by offshore investors have claimed that without… ...
    1 week ago
  • Homelessness – National has failed all of us
    A young South Auckland Māori woman recently tried to get hold of me around midnight. I missed her call. The woman wanted me to know the sharp reality facing too many families looking for a stable place to live. Things… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    1 week ago

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