The United Nations declared 2010 to be the International Year of Biodiversity. They have stated ‘It is a celebration of life on earth and of the value of biodiversity for our lives.’
National has taken up the cause wholeheartedly by celebrating the International Year of Biodiversity in a variety of weird and wonderful ways. They seem hell bent on enacting policies that will do nothing but destroy biodiversity in the name of the economic growth.
They have stopped the phasing out of inefficient incandescent light bulbs which would assist in reducing energy consumption. They have ignored calls to clean up our air by abandoning minimum fuel economy standards for cars.
It gets worse.
John Key and Murray McCully severely damaged New Zealand’s previously proud reputation on marine mammal conservation by stating that they would support a resumption of commercial whaling, and then thankfully after a huge public outcry rejected the IWC proposal. Not to mention National increasing this years quota for Southern Bluefin Tuna, a species that is listed as ‘Critically Endangered’ on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.
Sadly, it gets even worse.
Instead of taking leadership on climate change National has weakened New Zealand’s stance by gutting the ETS making it effectively meaningless, lifted the ban on new thermal (coal and gas) electricity generation and repealed the biofuel sales obligation. To top it all off Gerry Brownlee refers to coal as ‘sexy’ which could explain his infatuation with opening up the conservation estate for mining. Not to mention mining exploration of seamounts that NIWA itself calls ‘hotspots of biodiversity.’ Funnily enough all this talk of mining comes at the same time as National introduced a bill to ‘streamline’ the RMA which will increase mining-sector access and speed-up time frames for applications.
National either doesn’t understand what celebrating biodiversity means or it doesn’t care. Reducing energy consumption, cleaning up our air, cleaner fuels and strong climate change and conservation policies all benefit biodiversity by having flow on effects for the ecosystems involved. National’s policies so far show that it cares little for the future of our planet and the people that have to live on it. Short term economic polices are exactly that, short term, and National will continue to have blood on their hands until they learn the value of biodiversity in our lives.