A government looking at the climate challenges, not with fear but with hope

Written By: - Date published: 6:10 am, July 9th, 2023 - 69 comments
Categories: election 2023, greens, james shaw - Tags:

James Shaw, co-leader of the Green Party, gave a speech at the party’s AGM yesterday. Text of speech is here, video is embedded below.

There’s this hangover from our old First Past the Post electoral system that you have to be the government to effect serious change. Following from that is the MMP era idea that smaller parties get some concessions but really don’t have that much influence unless they are centrist tails that can wag the dog.

In this speech Shaw points a number of times to the gains the Greens have made in the past two terms. He names the Greens as “the only political party to treat climate change as the crisis it truly is”, and later says that what they have delivered in the past six years, given the governments they had to work with, has been remarkable.

This might sound like hyperbole, but it’s not. Consider the Zero Carbon Act, introduced in 2019 as an amendment to the 2002 Climate Change Response Act, Shaw describes its intent and import, starting with coming into government after the 2017 election,

Six years ago, we pulled together to get the party through the most traumatic election campaign we have had.

An election that took us to the brink – but that also took us into Government, with ministers, for the first time in our history.

We immediately got to work on what would quickly become the largest government programme of work to cut emissions this country has ever seen.

Creating a single framework, that would require every single future government to take action to cut emissions, was the job of the Zero Carbon Act – which we passed.

Amongst other things, the Zero Carbon Act requires Governments to have binding plans to cut emissions and to adapt to the coming floods and storms.

Let’s take that in for a moment. It’s the legislation that binds future governments to act on climate and both mitigate and adapt.

We’re not doing enough. Shaw himself says this, frequently. Someone pointed out yesterday that in his State of the Planet speech in February, Shaw said he was frustrated 8 times. He gets it. But us not doing enough isn’t the same as nothing good being achieved, and rather than rearranging deck chairs while the NZ First tail and then the majority Labour government dragged the chain, the Greens got on with setting up the frameworks for turning the Titanic around.

Shaw goes on to talk about the Emission Reduction Plan,

Last year I was very proud to usher in the country’s first, comprehensive, all-of-government Emissions Reduction Plan.

It is a blueprint for a zero-carbon Aotearoa.

With well-paying jobs doing meaningful work, upgrading the country to run on clean energy, with better infrastructure, and to restore our native wildernesses and wildlife. 

There are now sixteen different Ministers, holding eighteen portfolios between them, that are named as having responsibilities in the plan.

So, when I said at AGM two years ago that every Minister is a Climate Change Minister, this is what I meant.

Climate change has gone from being the problem of the Ministry for the Environment and the Minister of Climate Change, to everybody’s problem.

Do you see what is happening there? The Greens, despite not having much power in either of the last two terms, has been changing the culture so that we are now turning in the right direction. This is the set up to taking the action that will really make a difference, if we are bold enough to lean into it.

Shaw spends the second half of the speech talking about the importance of native biodiversity and how this intersects with climate action. For the people that want the Greens to be about the environment, this is where it’s at. For the people following the systems thinking conversation on The Standard this week, this is what the Greens are both pointing to and doing,

One of the main drivers of the climate crisis has been the wholesale destruction of the world’s forests and wildernesses.

Here in Aotearoa, warming from deforestation and land use change is roughly seven times the warming from our fossil emissions.

Think about that.

Our destruction of our natural wildernesses has had seven times the impact on climate change than has our use of fossil fuels.

Since human settlement began, we have removed three quarters of our natural forest cover.

More than half of that deforestation occurred in the last 200 years since colonisation began, and most of that in the last 100 years.

For decades, successive Governments have tried to deal with our biodiversity and climate crises separately, trapping what should be complementary solutions into silos.

But the reality is, neither the biodiversity crisis, nor the climate crisis, can be successfully tackled unless they are tackled together.

I’d really like to see the analyses the seven times figure is based on, because that’s astonishing, but it also presents an opportunity. Understanding that the climate and ecology crises are part of the same dynamic has long been known. The good news is that working on them in an integrated way brings benefits that are more than the sum of the parts. Restoring ecosystems draws down carbon, provides jobs, protects people from heat and mitigates flooding, and retains the levels of biodiversity we need to survive.

There’s a lot of good stuff in this speech. The up front summation of where we are at with climate is blunt and on point, but please read/watch the whole thing for the solutions, and if you want to understand what the Greens are doing this year. This is the party with the actual plan for how to get through the crisis,

What we do over the next few years will profoundly impact the world our children and grandchildren inherit from us.

We can create a world with clean air and water, unlimited renewable energy that powers everything from our cars, to our bikes, to our heat pumps.

And we can have a thriving natural environment that will sustain us well into the future.

And we can do it without increasing the world’s temperature.

All we need is a government with the political courage necessary to match the scale and urgency of the challenges in front of us.

A government that looks at these challenges, not with fear, but with hope

69 comments on “A government looking at the climate challenges, not with fear but with hope ”

  1. Ad 2

    So there are two actual things the Greens propose:

    1. biodiversity credits. Which are kind of like the Emissions Trading Scheme.

    2. A Ministry for Climate Change

    On the first one it would be a very brave person indeed who could claim this ETS was a success. Doubling down with a coded land tax would be an impressive sell to the people of Gisborne or Auckland

    On the second the Ministry of Climate Change as a split-off of MfE would be passed around in Wellington like a bullied kid against the hard players like MPI, MBIE and Treasury. It would need a singularly strong legislative purpose and control some massive fund for people to take note of it.

    It must surely be perplexing that there is no activist call to arms in Shaw's speech. He has just doubled down on more bureaucracy.

    We are in the middle of difficult negotiations with landowners who are Red or Orange stickered and local and central government are taking an awful long time to agree compensation and transition payments. Shaw was silent on fixing actual problems for people.

    We are in the middle of whole suburbs and towns being non-viable due to multiple climate effects: Gisborne, Westport, South Dunedin, Thames, Muriwai, and more. There was nothing on his Managed Retreat and Climate Change Act. Shaw was silent on fixing actual problems for people.

    We are also in the middle of forming a $4billion fund to rebuild after Gabrielle. Can Shaw not actually take off his tie and get up there and do some work? Or even just encourage his supporters to get up there? They need the help. Shaw was silent on fixing actual problems for people.

    It was also really odd that he focused resoundingly on the negative and very little on practical success. The standout being the replacement of the Glenbrook coal furnace. It's like our export-dependent economy didn't exist. Shaw was silent on fixing actual problems for people.

    Anyone can bleat about how bad things are. But politics is about people. People vote. You have to fix problems for people with policy. Shaw just doesn't see that.

    • Patricia Bremner 2.1

      We are in the middle of difficult negotiations….

      That must be incredibly taxing sad and local and national politics making decisions drawn out. Kia kaha Ad you are obviously doing important work.

    • adam 2.2

      It must surely be perplexing that there is no activist call to arms in Shaw's speech. He has just doubled down on more bureaucracy.

      Maybe former contributor Bills verbal image of Shaw has some validity after all??!?!?

      • weka 2.2.1

        Weka: hey look, the Greens did all this governmental building and culture change around climate so that when we are reading to get real about climate all those things are in place.

        Ad: pfft, bureaucracy.

        Didn't Bill think Shaw was a neoliberal shill? Shaw has been a member of the Greens since the party formed. Anyone who thinks he's a neoliberal shill doesn't know what Shaw says or does, or why.

        • adam

          I would have thought the polls would be a good indication of how people have reacted to Shaw.

          Personally, I think he is a liberal who thinks there is capitalist solutions to the warming environment.Which is in my humble opinion is a bit fubar at this moment of history.

          I've never been convinced by what Shaw has said or done otherwise. As for motivation – who knows, not really seeing much of that either.

          • weka

            Why? The GP is to the left or most voters. If you theory was right, more people would vote GP because of Shaw, esp Labour voters.

            • adam

              What are you saying weka?

              Because, Shaw is not to the left of labour in terms of economics, so why would anyone from "the left" vote for him?

              • arkie

                With what evidence do you make that claim? He is co-leader of the Greens, a party that is economically left of Labour, a party still wedded to neoliberal 'market solutions'.

                We will tackle unacceptable levels of inequality and environmental damage through reorienting taxation, regulating markets, bolstering environmental protection, investing in people and innovation, and strengthening education. We will ensure that a Green economy supports all New Zealanders, promotes gender and pay equity, recognises and values unpaid work, and provides a just distribution of our nation’s wealth. Through Green transformation we will create a richer future for ourselves and for future generations.


                • Dennis Frank

                  Seems perception-driven to me. Not reality-driven. In reality, the Greens have an economic policy that transcends left/right. Perception usually ignores that due to the GPs leaders emphasising practical economic policy initiatives to suit current circumstances.

                  Since these are leftist (focus on helping those adversely affected) perception hones in on leftist framing of their stance.

                  Incredible tho it may seem, it is actually possible to walk & chew gum simultaneously, so there's no valid reason to exclude their long-term economic policy. Their performance is therefore inadequate.

                  Including it in advocacy of an integral view of economic progress would enable voters to grasp that they are serious about collective resilience. They haven't figured that out yet. Green voters can always write to them & ask them to pull finger, eh?

                • adam

                  arkie I said Shaw not the Green party.

                  Feel free to try again.

                  • arkie

                    I note you did not take the opportunity to provide the evidence I requested.

                    Try again.

                  • weka

                    go on then, explain how you think Shaw is not to the left of Labour.

                    • adam

                      I thought I asked you that first weka?

                    • weka []

                      don’t think so. You made the claim that Shaw isn’t to the left of Labour. Are you going to provide any evidence of that?

                    • adam

                      But to your point

                      “the only political party to treat climate change as the crisis it truly is"

                      That is a line only a Tory could pull off. Really, if you think Te Pāti Māori is not on that waka I'd suggest you engage with more Māori media.

                      This within the frame of liberal economics is neither left nor right, it's just wrong.


                      Opps sorry


                      I could go on, do I really need to point all his speeches framed within a economic model which is the problem, not the solution.

                    • weka []

                      It’s an election year. Of course in this speech he’s going to say that the Greens are the only party to treat climate change as the crisis it is. He’s not going to say ‘hey, us, or vote for TPM. And TMP aren’t going to day the reverse either.

                      But this conversation is about Labour and Shaw, not TPM.

                      You just said something Shaw announced is wrong, but you didn’t say how.

                      He works in a neoliberal government. He’s the climate minister but he sits ouside of cabinet apart from meetings with cabinet on climate matters. What this says to me is that Labour are still calling teh shots. Shaw is very good at working within the system to make gains despite the system. He often says that what they are doing is not enough.

                      On Poverty, today,

                      With thousands of households struggling, now is precisely the time to change the tax system.

                      A fair tax on the wealthiest 0.7% people in NZ would raise enough to lift every family out of poverty.

                      If that’s what people want, their only option this year is the Green Party.


                      Left of Labour (not that it would be hard at the moment).

                    • adam

                      Come arkie, that's not what I said.

                      Please don't make me a straw-man.

                    • adam

                      He sits where he sit because of his economics. And it's liberal economics, go read some of his speeches.

                    • weka []

                      even if that’s true (and I have read his speeches), you still haven’t explained how that makes him not to the left of Labour.

              • weka

                Because, Shaw is not to the left of labour in terms of economics, so why would anyone from "the left" vote for him?

                No. Shaw is to the left of Labour. I'm saying that your argument the GP polling indicates that people don't like Shaw is flawed.

                • adam

                  The age of weather extremes is upon us, and the Greens can only poll 6ish-9ish% if you think Shaw is not a major part of that.

                  I respectfully disagree, he is as appealing as a wet bus ticket and chunk of that is his economics.

    • Simbit 2.3

      Take the tie off?! The price of metaphor is eternal vigilance. He's played his role. Next…

  2. tsmithfield 3

    I was actually very pleased to see the Greens put forward a proposal for encouraging farmers to plant indigenous forest on farm land.

    I assume this would be best applied on land that is marginally productive or unproductive. This would encourage our native birdlife to flourish, and also help minimise erosion of steeper land. And, also mean less ugly pine forests being planted.

    Seems like a no-brainer to me.

    • bwaghorn 3.1

      The farm im on now is doing a couple hectares as we speak the last farm I was on had fenced and planted many hectares of wetland, it's already happening, the greens hassling us more will just turn people of a left coalition more.

      • weka 3.1.1

        they're not hassling you more, they're putting in place frameworks that will make it easier for farmers and other land owners to do the right thing.

        And there still needs to be strong incentives, because for every farmer like you there are others still chopping down trees, draining wetlands, and flattening land for dairy farms.

        • bwaghorn

          Na it's another layer of invasiveness, just let them claim credits on any land fenced off and planted,

          I’ve seen a few farmers getting fined for wetland removal so I’m picking those days are over,

          It’s not been my doing on the 2 farms I’ve been on , still just lower management.

      • KJT 3.1.2

        Net wetland loss.

        New Zealand’s (including the Chatham Islands) freshwater wetland area decreased by 1,498 hectares (0.6 percent) in the most recent period between 2012 and 2018.

        This loss is a continuation of an ongoing pattern of net loss. Overall New Zealand lost 5,761 hectares of freshwater wetlands between 1996 and 2018


        “Over 90% was converted to grassland for grazing”.

      • tsmithfield 3.1.3

        Similar could be done around water ways as is being done in new subdivisions, in Christchurch anyway. That is, ensure the banks of water ways are well planted out with flaxes and other native plants that grow well in those locations. These tend to grow very densely. So, create natural barriers to prevent stock from getting close to the water ways. Hopefully, the plants would also absorb a lot of nitrates before they reach the water ways.

  3. Patricia Bremner 4

    I see Shaw's speech as a way to avoid what you and departments are dealing with.

    It was not Shaw and the Greens who did not listen. Your comments smack of "do something now" when the causes of now were foretold 30 years ago.

    A unified approach makes total sense, and yes, at the same time we have to deal with "now" and the hedonists.

    Even in the worst crisis long term planning is necessary, that does not negate sympathy for current plights.imo.

    But you are right, we do need a plan to mitigate the current fallout as well. Don’t forget he was talking to people in the Greens.

  4. Mike the Lefty 5

    What is encouraging about all this is that climate change has become more and more a central election issue with each election that occurs. National and ACT, and to a lesser extent Labour, want to try and sideline it by making the economy, law and order, and the cost of living the central issues. Judging by recent polls, a growing number of people are demanding that political parties treat it as a serious issue and have policies. That shows up the weakness of the political right because National's policies reflect a cavalier attitude to climate change whilst ACT barely acknowledges its existence.

    The public are demanding more, the Greens are the only ones with a real response and that may well win them more support at the election.

    • Belladonna 5.1

      Hmm – I'd say that climate change only becomes a central election issue in popular perception – when we are in the midst of a major weather event. People forget very quickly.

      The Ipsos survey had climate change in the top 5 issues (27% percent) in February 23 (right in the middle of the Auckland weather bomb and Cyclone Gabrielle).

      But, by the latest survey (May 23) – it had already dropped to 23% (only just making the top 5 – with no. 6 on the list at 22%, The Economy)

      Way out-ranked by the 'traditional' issues: cost of living, cost of housing, healthcare and crime. Crime, in particular, is skyrocketing as a cause of concern – from no. 5 to no. 2 in a year.



      There is greater concern over climate change in the medium term (next 5 years) – but it only pushes it to 4th in concern (outranked by cost of living, crime and healthcare).

      While The Greens are regarded as the party best fitted to deal with climate change, National is regarded as the best to deal with cost of living, crime and housing (go figure) – 3 of the top issues; while Labour is regarded as the best to deal with healthcare.

      • Shanreagh 5.1.1

        This is very interesting BD.

        Even though CC is down the ranks a little in spot 5 it still needs to be nudged to view so electors can see the effects of inaction.

        Some of the food shortages and related cost of living increases do link back to CC ie crops wiped out leading to shortages etc. Getting houses that are fit for living in in NZ ie not built on flood or erosion prone areas, not being sited on wall to wall concrete outside so run-off is controlled all have a link to CC.

        That we can affect CC for good or bad and also mitigate it gives hope.

        We have had devastating floods etc in HB & Gisborne. We need to deal with the effects of these. The logs may represent a niche to make the best of something bad, while looking at what to do in the future.

        After the huge Mangatu slip out of Gisborne the future was seen to be the planting in pines to control stability. NZ Forest Service had a more managed outlook to its pine plantations but the cutting rights were sold as part of the Neo lib era to mainly foreign firms. Being granted these areas they see them as being capable of being logged as they would not have been leased had they not been type of reasoning,

        PF Olsen, a noted forester, wrote this paper in 1970 about production/protection in the Mangatu area.


        The same story plays out in the Whareratas between Wairoa-Gisborne and Devil's Elbow forests around Tangoio out of Napier. Areas planted largely for protection purposes, cutting rights on sold and land is practically clear felled.

        Liberally season this with increased weather load caused by CC and we are back where we were in the 1960s.

        So a bit away but perhaps the answer is to find the CC link in issues 1-4 so it is continually in view.

        The answer may not be to repalnt in pines but to repalnt as protection forest in natives. This will mean biting the bullet on assessing if the cutting rights we have issued at the moment are fit for future purpose.

        • Belladonna

          The forest owners are saying that it's not all slash which is causing the issue – but whole trees, being eroded out in landslides – so plantings which should have been stabilizing land, are not doing the required job.

          severely impacted by Cyclone Gabrielle with landslides taking out strips of 10-to-20 year old trees, roots and all.

          Woods said most of what the company has lost and ended up in waterways isn’t slash, or forestry waste, but full trees.

          “We would have thought those trees would have been stabilising the sites, and typically it does, so we are doing a lot of work on why those ages [of trees], was it soil or sickness, or did it just happen?”

          Woods said it had native trees in the Aratu Estate and they have also slid down hillsides into rivers.

          “This is the vast majority of the material that we see in mobilising onto beaches and properties. There is some form of sawn-off material, but the vast majority is actually these other trees that have come out, the younger trees.”


          • Shanreagh

            I agree…multi causes. I do think though a focus on more clear felling may set in train changes that destablise the hillsides. The area has very erosion prone soils and a careful removal regime may have helped avoid whole hillsides including older trees being on the move.

            We may never know but it was not the type of management that NZFS had in mind/did. Of course as a Govt dept with huge landholdings there was more ability to treat land carefully here but log it intensively in other areas. .

            • Belladonna

              I think – entirely unscientifically, and with no supporting data ; that it's just the reality of occupying a highly hilly environment, with friable land-slip prone soils – during a high rainfall period.

              There are possibly some things we can do to mitigate for the future (and certainly things we can do to not make the situation worse) – but there are always going to be landslides and forest wash-outs during high rain-fall events.

              These occur not only on recent forestry plantings – but on what is the closest we can come to untouched native forest (e.g. Te Urewera)

              The geological history of NZ is replete with historic massive landslides changing the contours of the land.

  5. That_guy 6

    I have a lot of respect for Shaw because he's never made it about him. He would have been justified in saying "fuck y'all, I'm off to TOP" (which is entirely plausible since he and Raf are apparently friends).

    He's obviously decided that somebody has to do the boring stuff, somebody has to eat some shit sandwiches and do what is necessary to get as much work done as possible.

    I'm grateful.

    • georgecom 6.1

      agreed. he did the work to build climate change infrastructure which wasn't popular at times or widely celebrated but he stuck at it. last piece of that first phase jigsaw is get farming to pay for emissions. I sincerely hope it's the greens in the govt, bugger the rural and political sectors who want to kick the can down the road for another 7 years, repeating the past 15 years from the do nothing rural sectors and national party

    • weka 6.2

      I also have a lot of respect for him on this. Imgaine understanding the nature of the crisis and choosing to work in an area where you are constantly thwarted on what needs to be done but you stay and do the work because it still needs to be done and it's better that it's you rather than someone who doesn't get the nature of the crisis.

      I do think some people are better at this kind of compromise than others, but it still take strength and commitment. I couldn't do it.

  6. Shanreagh 7

    A different view of The Greens Climate change policy.

    The point that I do agree with No right Turn on is …'no increased ambition'. I would class that as aspirational. Often Govt parties hide the aspirational stuff in case it 'frightens the horses'. However if we cannot lift our eyes to see where we want to be, doing the day to day in support sometimes loses its glow.


    And the Greens are offering us… the status quo. Oh, there are tweaks: a standalone Ministry, moving control of ETS settings to the Climate Change Commission and out of the hands of politicians – but these are bureaucratic fiddles. There's no new policies for emissions reduction, no increased ambition, nothing substantive.

    This is still the best climate change policy on offer. But I expected more from the Greens. And if they're not going to offer what's required, then who will?

    Anyway another view from the Left.

    Perhaps Labour will offer a better set of Climate Change policies…that would be a turn up for the books…..Labour pulling The Greens into (a better) position on Climate Change. wink

    • Incognito 7.1

      Seems to me that if the Greens don’t promise the CC equivalent of 100,000 homes in 10 years they get (heavily) criticised and if they do they get ridiculed. Nobody seems to have heard of Realpolitik – whiners & dreamers.

      • Shanreagh 7.1.1

        I thought the view of No RightTurn was interesting as it was from the left and indicated a view that something a bit stronger may have been more acceptable and the Greens may not have picked this up. Leaves the territory open for bold climate change ideas hence my tongue in cheek comment about Labour.

        Don't really see the need for 'whiners/dreamers/realpolitik' Nothing to do with any of these loaded words or your 100,000 houses view. I did say that 'aspirational' often excites…

        Just a straight placing by me of an interesting info/view from the left.

        Don't you have a view on whether the CC policy could have been a bit bolder as mentioned by NRT? Or is it perfection in a policy in your view?

  7. Dennis Frank 8

    On the relation of policy to circumstance, get this:

    Scientific research has shown that El Niño-related rainfall over the tropical Pacific Ocean consistently increases in a warming world regardless of whether El Niño strengthens. However, the strength of El Niño and La Niña events is also vitally important in understanding how their impacts may change. If El Niño gets stronger its rainfall impacts will be even more severe. This means even less rainfall in some parts of the world and even more in others. Overall, recent research suggests that in many regions of the world, current El Niño and La Niña impacts will be enhanced or become more extreme with warming.

    How El Niño and La Niña are predicted to change with time is linked to the world's CO2 emissions pathway — that means, which decisions humans take in terms of carbon emissions will be extremely important in how the events evolve in the future. The climate models used to investigate the future of El Niño and La Niña are state-of-the-art computer simulations also used by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.


    Models simulate future reality. In current reality, we look for a convergence pattern or trend to assess the utility of models we use. With climate change models we rely on a consensus of experts since we can't do the appraisal ourselves.

    So the thing to watch for now is the extent to which El Nino warps the overall warming trend. More rain on the East Coast, Auckland and Northland or not? Hills being transformed into mudslides are the current reality. Will the switch to El Nino escalate this effect or reduce it?? Policy gradualism is all very well, and James has done it effectively. Extremes of weather inevitably increase public focus on practical remedies though – which requires governance more than it requires policy development.

    • Shanreagh 8.1

      Extremes of weather inevitably increase public focus on practical remedies though – which requires governance more than it requires policy development.

      Goodness talk about convergence DF.

      I have just been thinking about CC and forestry as well.


      11 July 2023 at 11:48 am

      • Dennis Frank 8.1.1

        Yes. Seems to portend a tactical switch towards regional governance. However that will only kick in if normal governance is seen to be too gradualist to be useful.

        I suspect we are in an interim situation – a state of waiting to see an emerging trend from El Nino. If the summer & autumn weather was produced by La Nina, we may not get more of those aerial superhighways of water heading our way from the tropics, which will be a relief! However the long-term view must blend both those hemispherical climate patterns.

      • weka 8.1.2

        are you meaning for your email address to be visible? It's in your name and your copypasta.

        • Shanreagh

          That is weird as I just copied/pasted directly from the page here on TS. Didn't go anywhere near my emails. Is it possible to remove it…..I have checked that the comment from TS shows up when you click just the date/time. perhaps let me have time to edit again?

          Going back to the comment writing page it says that the email address will not be published?

          • weka

            your email is in the webpage field as well and that is what is making your user name a clickable link and the email address visible if one hovers over it.

            When you copy and paste your user name in TS into a comment, the link stays live and it can be seen in your new comment.

            Can you please tell me what device you are using to comment on TS today?

            • weka

              I've removed the email address from the webpage field, which means it no longer shows in your comment. Please make sure when you comment next that the webpage field is empty.

              I also edited the comment so your email doesn't show there.

              But your email still shows in historic comments. Is this a problem?

              • Shanreagh

                Running windows on a HP laptop.

                I deleted the website, which was still there even after you had taken it off and it will post the comment without it.

                For the future if I just post the date/time and no name presumably my email won't show? Was the mistake I made catching and linking my name as part of the live link?

        • Shanreagh

          Thank you Weka. smiley

    • Incognito 8.2

      Models simulate future reality. In current reality, we look for a convergence pattern or trend to assess the utility of models we use.

      That’s inaccurate and misleading and you should know better than to spout this kind of sloppy pseudo-expert assertion – models and simulations are different things with different objectives.

      • Dennis Frank 8.2.1

        Users normally use futuristic models to simulate the future is the generalisation I was implying. They assess the correspondence between model & reality to decide if to tweak the design or not. Any developmental trend that is relevant gets integrated via feedback and pattern recognition…

        • Incognito

          Oh, FFS, ‘futuristic models’! Your word soups sometimes are nothing but pseudo-intellectual BS – model simulations and futuristic models are also different things.

          Why don’t you start saying & explaining what you mean instead of ‘implying’ and being vague, sloppy & misleading and leaving the readers to fill in the rest through paranormal mind-reading and psycho-osmotic mind-melts with the collective consciousness?

          • Dennis Frank

            I did. smiley Your lack of comprehension isn't my problem. If you can't follow my explanation try pointing to your personal difficulty with it and asking others if they see the same problem. If you generate a consensus with other readers on that point, I'm likely to take it seriously…

            • Incognito

              Nope, you are conflating things, which has nothing to do with my reading or other comprehension.

              Don’t ‘imply’ that I should start a petition or conduct a poll before you take criticism or corrections of your conscious confusing seriously. Lift your game!

              • Dennis Frank

                Happy to lift my game – in principle. However I don't get any relevance to current issues. I acknowledge you have attempted to indicate relevance.

                conscious confusing

                You seems to be airing a subjective reaction. Relevance to anyone else is not evident. Perhaps Weka can ascertain relevance?

                • Incognito

                  Many (most?) of your comments are very dense and complex and they are (almost?) impossible to parse & understand for someone who is not familiar with the topics, or who does not share the same perspective as you. Indeed, it resembles rambling and sounds irrelevant instead of a hint of a minimal effort to provide a more direct or practical answer to a question, for example. It begs the question why you’re doing this here on TS to a general audience of readers?

                  The relevance is this: you clearly take corners with accuracy & truth on some topics even though you make it sound assertive & knowledgeable when this is doubtful, to say the least. How then can we have confidence in the rest of your word soups? It is relevant to your general commenting behaviour here.

      • Shanreagh 8.2.2

        I'm being blunt.

        This is a very annoying discussion trait…..to tell someone off for doing something, or explaining something in a way you don't like, but to make no attempt to frame it in a way so that we can look at the difference your framing would have made.

        So can we still discuss convergence? Just not models and simulations in the same sentence? Actually I had no problem understanding the point being made by DF.

        • Incognito

          An annoying trait is some commenters wasting oxygen on this site with BS.

          An annoying trait is some commenters being unclear, inaccurate, or plain wrong in their assertions.

          Fake news and fake claims are annoying.

          Someone who claims or pretends to have a good grasp of the stuff they comment about can at least make some effort to explain properly without misleading others.

          Lazy & sloppy comments are annoying.

          Words have meanings. Concepts have meanings. For robust debate people need to be on the same page or we might end up going around in circles talking past each other, talking over each other, which is all very annoying and a fucking waste of time.

          It is not even about framing as such, it is about being clear, transparent, honest, accountable and having integrity in robust debate. Assertions are not simply subjective opinions that one can ‘frame’ in a certain way.

          Intellectual wanking is as annoying as political or ideological wanking.

          • Shanreagh

            Yet you do us the discourtesy of not allowing us to see how your way of explanation would have made an improvement, because you have not given it. This is also concerning for the free flow of debate and extending of knowledge.

            I took convergence and the idea that a person looking at studies etc in the here and now could be looking across many/several done in different ways. I've been in this situation and done this when we cannot wait.

            Anyway are you able to explain why you did not like model and simulation wrapped up in the same sentence?

            I for one would really like to know.


            • Drowsy M. Kram

              Perfect is the enemy of good

              "All models are wrong but some are useful"

              I'm fine with having "model and simulation wrapped up in the same sentence", provided the sentence doesn't give a misleading impression that the terms are interchangeable.

              A simulation is the imitation of the operation of a real-world process or system over time. Simulations require the use of models; the model represents the key characteristics or behaviors of the selected system or process, whereas the simulation represents the evolution of the model over time. Often, computers are used to execute the simulation.


              Cycles of 'model-simulation-model-simulation' can test and/or refine models.


              • Dennis Frank

                Cycles of 'model-simulation-model-simulation' can test and/or refine models.

                Well yeah, that's normal scientific practice. You & I know that due to graduating in science but as far as I've seen here, Incognito hasn't – which could explain the complaint…

            • Incognito

              Model, simulation, and futuristic model, et cetera, are not synonymous; the onus is on DF to correct himself and explain what he meant. He knows or should know the difference, as a Physics graduate. Generalisation is still no excuse for inaccurate and misleading use of the terms and conflating them. Ask DF about orbit and orbital, for example – he wouldn’t use them synonymously because they are different things.

              Drowsy M. Kram has already obliged, I see.

              FYI, ‘futuristic model’ is not a common term or concept in science; it is parlance in a different domain. Forecast or prediction are more common terms; they are not simulations; simulations are not models; not all models are used for simulations or predictions. DF does know better and that’s annoying.

              • Shanreagh

                For what it's worth the fact that the words 'model' & 'simulation' were separate but together but in the same sentence said* to me that different 'things' were being referred to. Otherwise wouldn't a collective noun be used, if there is one? 'Experiments'/'tests' are the only collectives I can think of and have the flavour of General Science.

                • shook a few brain cells to remember that I had been told/knew they were not synonyms.

                Drowsy said

                I'm fine with having "model and simulation wrapped up in the same sentence", provided the sentence doesn't give a misleading impression that the terms are interchangeable.

                I did not read them as synonyms or interchangeable.

                To me the point was about ‘convergence’ that a person might see when looking across several studies done differently.

  8. Shanreagh 9

    Talking of forestry/slash/East Coast, CC and weather here is the report of the Committee looking at Forestry slash chaired by Hon Hekia Parata.



    Even a hat tip to CC implications & action by CC policy would be good.

    This report and its followup may provide a model for the future. And a belated recognition to the geographers, geomorphologists, forestry and land use planners who fought valiantly aganst the crazy stuff coming out of The Treasury when looking at land/forest and protection/plantation allocations. (largely to no avail)

    The mosaic management mentioned in the Parata Report sounds interestingly similar to the approach from the olden days. But what a waste of money and human needs/jobs etc and the breakup of small towns where forest workers lived in towns and were not flown in.

    Perhaps down with gradualism (and thinking rather than doing) using the Parata report as a baseline.

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