Key demands we publish full quote

Written By: - Date published: 11:43 am, August 20th, 2008 - 50 comments
Categories: climate change, flip-flop, national - Tags: ,

John Key called us to task in his interview with Wammo today:

“every leftwing blogger out there has a field-day going on and on about the fact that Labour say I said climate change is a hoax…they should just get their facts right down at The Standard because the facts are I said ‘Kyoto is a hoax'”.*

OK, fair enough. The full quote in question is:

“This is a complete and utter hoax, if I may say so. The impact of the Kyoto Protocol, even if one believes in global warming—and I am somewhat suspicious of it—is that we will see billions and billions of dollars poured into fixing something that we are not even sure is a problem”
(Hansard 10 May 2005, the online database isn’t working today)

So, Kyoto (the product of a decade of negotiations by tens of thousands of diplomats representing nearly 200 countries backed by the largest independent scientific body ever, the IPCC, and signed by nearly 200 governments) is a hoax and climate change may be some kind of a con, something that one needs to be ‘somewhat suspicious of’ and ‘we are not even sure is a problem’. Key was not the only senior Nat who thought this way (English, L Smith, Williamson, Carter, Hayes, Connell). They’ve publicly flip-flopped on climate change now, but who knows what they really believe?

Sorry, John. In future, we’ll endeavour to quote you in full.

[*Key then goes on to confirm that he believes Kyoto is a hoax, raising obvious questions about his party’s commitment to meeting our Kyoto obligations.]

50 comments on “Key demands we publish full quote”

  1. lprent 1

    Funny eh.. I think that JK has forgotten how immediate this medium is.

    Bit of a pain about Hansard being off line. I’d better keep an eye on my loading for the next couple of days.

  2. higherstandard 2

    Must admit to being a bit out of touch on this but my impression is that our obligations under the Kyoto protocol will cost the country around $500 million a year.

    Where does this money go ?

  3. Crank 3

    I’m not sure that the Nat’s have flip flopped on this one.

    At first they were suspicious about the reality of the problem and suggested a prudent course of action.

    Political and scientific concensus then built around the facts of the issue and they moved their policy to reflect this.

    This is fine example of good Governence in my opinion.

    What you dont want is those in charge of the country flying head first into potentially disasterous policy armed with only a sketchy understanding of the facts and a few heart warming platitudes.

  4. no, it’ $500 mil all up over 5 years on projections.

    Kyoto works like this:
    we pledged that our greenhouse annual emissions averaged over 2008-2012 would be equal to our emissions in 1990. Most countries pledged a reduction on 1990 levels.

    Now, we are legally bound to meet that obligation, if a country doesn’t reduce meet its pledge it must reduce emissions even more in the next five years. But if another country has reduced its emissions more than it pledged it would the country that has ailed to meet its target can buy some of the excess savings of the other country off them to make up the difference.

    Partly because Unitedfuture and nzf reused to support the carbon tax way back in 2005, we are not going to meet our emissions target, so we will buy ‘carbon credits’ from other countries that have done better than they need to have done… the EU and the former communist bloc will probably be the ones we buy from because they’re had the biggest reductions in emissions (the EU thanks to strong climate change poliocies including an emissions trading system that have been in place for several years aleady, the former communist bloc thanks to the collapse its of dirty heavy industry post 1991). Our bill will depend on how much we exceed our pledge by and the international carbon credit market.

    If you think we should withdraw from Kyoto you should vote ACT or challenge National to change its policy bak to its former climate change denier stance.

  5. Crank. problem with that theory is there has been no tipping point on the science in recent years – the evidence has been solid for decades.. it was solid enough in 1991 that nearly 200 countries signed the framework convention in climate change… the Nats just had their heads in the sand and now that has become politically unviable.

    Also, they have never suggested any course of action apart from doing nothing.

  6. Lew 6

    Crank: Except the scientific consensus of it all has been settled (at least, as settled as it is now) for years – the 2007 IPCC report essentially just confirmed the findings of earlier reports.

    There were and still are a vocal minority of climate scientists who disagree with the IPCC, and they’re entitled to have their views heard. But the major change since 2005, when Key made this statement, isn’t in science – it’s in public perception. 2006, the year of An Inconvenient Truth, was the year Climate Change became mainstream common-sense truth. I agree it’s good that Key and National appear to have changed their tune on this one, but I don’t think they’ve done it because of science – they’ve done it because of the weight of public opinion.

    Edit: SP – what you said.

    L

  7. Ben R 7

    Slight detour – if someone in my office uses polystyrene disposable cups instead of a mug, or glass…what should I do? I find it appalling.

  8. randal 8

    close your eyes and think of mother england

  9. Matthew Pilott 9

    Vaguely tangential, but I notice the latest Lonely Planet guide gives eco ratings for attractions. I also saw in a paper article that NZ is encountering increasing difficulties due to carbon miles and needs to be able to counter with total carbon cost figures.

    If those two factors aren’t a good enough reason to be Global Leaders instead of Fast Followers in the carbon/eco movement then nothing is. You’d hope even the Nats can bow to that type of pragmatism, but I doubt it – the measures required aren’t their style.

    Unfortunately there’s little option. If an environmental standard (e.g. offsetting agricultural emissions, or ensuring a standard for tourist attractions) is regulated for, then all businesses wear the cost equally. If not, then a few might regulate, but our exporting and tourism industries are increasingly judged as a whole. Either NZ is all-green, or it’s going to suffer some nasty consequences.

    National is too weak-willed and shortsighted to deal with this issue. Even Labour seem to need a few prods.

    Cap ‘coolness location’ no use if no one wants to come here or buy our stuff!

  10. Crank 10

    NZ was told originally by the Government that our participation in Kyoto would net us a handy half bill.

    It now turns out that we will have to cough up half a bill.

    To me this indicates that we didn’t really have a full handle on what our commitments were (or it was a snow job on the public).

    It is scarry that the same officials who messed up those numbers probably have had a huge hand in drafting the ETS.

  11. Phil 11

    So Lew, just to clarify…

    Public perception manipulated by National with untruths, bland platitudes and lies – bad.
    Public perception manipulated by Al Gore with untruths, bland platitudes and lies – ok.

    Does that sum it up?

    [don’t be a dork, phil. lew passes no judgment on Gore, he just says his move changed public perceptions. SP]

  12. Ben R 12

    “Public perception manipulated by Al Gore with untruths, bland platitudes and lies – ok.”

    Recent Court decision in UK was critical of some parts of Inconvenient Truth. Still, the basic message about global warming being human influenced stands?

  13. Lew 13

    Phil: Nice try with the partisan smear. Where did I say An Inconvenient Truth was good, or that National was bad? All I said (and you’re welcome to debate this) is that it dispelled the public’s doubts about climate change, making it accepted orthodoxy for most people, rather than simply for most climate scientists.

    I’m not a climate change expert, and as such I have to put some faith in the preponderance of expert opinion on this matter – the body representing that preponderance of opinion is the IPCC. As for AIT, it is indeed an excellent example of modern crisis propaganda – but for all its faults it does broadly accord with the IPCC’s findings.

    I think it’s good that Key and National have changed their tune on climate change because their views and policy now appear to correspond more closely to those of the IPCC, and I don’t much care whether they changed those views because of science or because of public perception. However I think it’s disingenuous to suggest that they changed for the former reason, as Crank did, and furthermore I think that if they did change strictly as a response to public perception, it suggests they’re taking orthodox climate change policy on somewhat reluctantly, rather than wholeheartedly as they claim.

    L

  14. lprent 14

    scientific concensus then built around the facts of the issue and they moved their policy to reflect this.

    Not really – the concensus has been there for a long time. When I did an earth sciences degree in 1979-1981 the scientific basis of global warming was well understood then. It was what everyone in the field expected to be happening from the physical theory.

    The problem was that we couldn’t see it easily because the measurement history wasn’t there. So concensus was limited by the measurements.

    You (as a bare minimum) need at least 25 years of accurate data scattered across the globe to be able to iron out the localised effects (eg ocean current buffering), cyclic effects (sunspots etc), and local human effects (amazing how much air pollution is generated and how it spreads), etc etc.

    Where temperatures were measured was spotty. Essentially until geophysical year in 1957, there was no systematic ground level air-temperature gathering on a world wide basis. Almost all of it was in the northern hemisphere where the human inhabitation effects were most pronounced.

    That is why you had some populist idiots talking about measuring the coming ice age in the 70’s. They looked at their local temperature records in europe and north america, and discovered that pollution drops ground temperatures (duh!). I still hear that scientific idiocy trotted out whenever this topic arises.

    Upper atmosphere temperatures were patchy at best prior to 1957. Water temperatures (ie liquid atmosphere) were only available from occasional scientific surveys.

    Essentially, it was only after earth survey satellites went up from the late 70’s onwards that we’ve been able to get a broad look. Similarly computers going widespread means that everything collects data.

    It proved that the effect was real at least by the late 80’s when used in conjunction with the spotty earlier data. Since then they have been refining the models against real data.

    The only thing I’m sure of is that the IPCC is still way too conservative. The effects will be sooner and larger than expected. Why – because the IPCC keeps heading that way.

  15. Rob 15

    Isnt it funny how the Aussies are on to it quicker than a lot of Kiwis. They see Helen as a left wing control Freak. I wonder if Crosby Textor organised this press release very clever if they did

    http://stuff.co.nz/4662937a6160.html

    [lprent: Hey he can link… Now if he could just stay somewhere close to topic. ]

  16. “A CONTROL FREAK” now Peter,very carefully think, how many times has she tried to have you arrested? Well SIR………..

  17. i’ve written briefing papers like that and read many more – they are always out of date (and this one appears to have actually been written years ago) and they are always cartoonish in their understanding of the country’s politics… so, ‘it’s true because an old dfat breifing paper says so’ doesn’t impress me.

  18. The good ol’ ocker put the boot into the CONTROL FREAK.
    Made my bloody day.Cheers dingo.

  19. Lew 19

    SP: Rob’s nowhere near the actual topic, per usual.

    L

  20. Labelling a Prime Minister as a CONTROL FREAK is WORLD NEWS of the highest order Lew.Sorry I will say no more on the matter until the flame thrower brigade back off a bit.

  21. dad, the breifing paper doen’t even say that, even if a dfat briefing paper mattered, which it doesn’t

  22. Clinton, I will wait with much anticipation to see what the other media make of this story.Pigs can fly too.

  23. Lew 23

    D4J: it is? All top politicians are by their very nature control freaks, highly-strung egotistical attention-seeking megalomaniacs. Clark isn’t exceptional in this regard.

    L

  24. dad. i’m sure the media will be as excited as you because they know nothing about what a briefing paper is either.

  25. Matthew Pilott 25

    What a surprise, Rob has come in with another one of his inane and pointless comments. He really is like an annoying little puppy – off he goes, and he always comes back, panting with exitement over the latest wee find he has. It would be kind of cute, in a pathetic way, if it wasn’t such a lame way of proving he has no ability to discuss what the adults are talking about on each thread…
    P.S. you think you have to be onto it to see that Helen Clark is left-wing? You’re more of a muppet than I thought. Wait, I take that back, let’s just say that you continue to meet my expectations.

  26. Rob 26

    Steve agree and yes I can link but it seems the timing is exquisite so it must be Crosby Textor

    Im sure Helen really doesnt want this in the Media at the moment

  27. Matthew Pilott 27

    Yes Rob I’m sure she really cares. Just as we all do. Really. Please start a blog and put these same comments you bore us to tears with on it and you’ll get…well, who knows, but you won’t know till ya try right?

  28. insider 28

    Steve re kyoto

    Firstly it’s a political document. It;s not the only way to deal with emissions so opposing it is not of the heresy levels that being a ‘denier’ is.

    How many of those 200 countries actually have obligations under teh first commitment period? Wouldn’t you sign up to something that made someone else pay the bill?

    And that is the context of the ‘hoax’ comment. That Kyoto is regarded by some/many as an ineffectual policy tool to reduce emissions because it only targets some emissions – putting aside the reality that most countries don;t even appear to be getting close to their targets and are busy trying to shift the goal posts.

  29. Crank 29

    The thing we generally espouse as being a strength of Clarkes Clarks is her performance in global affairs.

    It is interesting to see that our closest ally thinks her foreign policy agenda was fixed during the Vietnam war.

    maybe she is not the legend abroad we are told.

    Edit: Why am I in moderation?

    [lprent: Get the name right. I have a number of common misspellings in the moderation. I got sick of having my name misspelt. Then I realised that the trolls do it all of the time. If they want to avoid moderation, then they have to lift their Standard. ]

  30. MikeE 30

    Kind of reminds me of when Jaqui Dean called me a “left wing blogger” on national radio..

  31. Draco TB 31

    Wouldn’t you sign up to something that made someone else pay the bill?

    Considering that the someone else incurred the bill in the first place then it seems reasonable to me.

  32. Matthew Pilott 32

    Insider, saying Kyoto is a complete and utter hoax means that Key believes it will do nothing useful whatsoever and is taking everyone for a ride.

    To say what Key said therefore inherently makes him a ‘denier’, there is no other way of looking at it. “Complete and utter” leaves no wiggle room whatsoever. Nothing about the effectiveness or limitations of its setup, it is saying reducing carbon emissions is a worthless activity.

    My, how he’s changed his tune. Problem is, if he doesn’t really believe it (which , let’s be honest, he doesn’t) then he’s certainly going to go for a lame ‘fast follower’ at best.

  33. Lift the standard and join the Kyoto gravy train.Do enjoy Al Bore stoking the boilers. What a croc of madness.Shall I plant a pine tree or pull it big Al?

  34. r0b 34

    Plant a pine tree Dad. We should all plant trees.

  35. But they rip pine trees out so cows can shit. I need a mortgage to buy a block of fucking cheese and I am livid !!!

  36. Tane 36

    Then join your union Dad. Everyone’s welcome.

  37. Tane already signed up for bloggers union enforcer and village idiot when required.

  38. johndoe 38

    From the 10 May 2005 hansard: ” Yet here we are down in New Zealand, a very little country with about 0.2 percent of the world’s emissions, putting a self-imposed straitjacket on our businesses, and waving a huge flag that says: “Foreign investment, don’t come anywhere near us. Australia is over there—the West Island. Go over there to pour your dollars in.’ To the Chinese we are saying: “Come in and buy as much coal as you like from our West Coast. We’ll sell it to you and you can burn it without a carbon charge—but, by the way, to those back here in Aotearoa New Zealand we will be slapping on a carbon charge and you won’t be able to operate.’

    This is a complete and utter hoax, if I may say so.”
    parliament.nz/en-NZ/PB/Debates/Debates/3/2/8/47HansD_20050510_00001115-Climate-Change-Response-Amendment-Bill-First.htm

  39. Dean 39

    I adore how all you Kyoto defenders are ignoring, over and over again, the fact that New Zealanders were initially told by Labour that we would stand to make a net profit from signing which of course turned out to be anything but reality.

    To think these are the people we trust to run the country, and they can make such a monumental stuff up – and their supporters bury their heads in the sand over it. Stupendous!

  40. r0b 40

    To think these are the people we trust to run the country, and they can make such a monumental stuff up – and their supporters bury their heads in the sand over it.

    Say Dean, do you have a cry every time Treasury gets a prediction wrong by a Billion or two?

  41. Dean 41

    “Say Dean, do you have a cry every time Treasury gets a prediction wrong by a Billion or two?”

    It’s everyone else’s fault – NEVER the governments. Except the previous government, who are to blame for everything ministers cannot blame on the staff they are in charge of.

    TPF was only guilty of trying to help. Nothing more. I love how you Labour supporters choose to ignore that one too – in fact, I bet you just pretend it never ever happened. After all, he was a union man.

    Helen never leaks. By definition she cannot.

    Really, r0b. I know you used to work for her, but your fauning is getting a little pathetic. We both know if the tables were turned, and the baby eating National party were in power, you’d be calling for their blood over such a gross miscalculation.

    You may very well be fooling yourself, but you’re not fooling anyone with any kind of neutral viewpoint on the matter.

    PS: off topic but I would be interested in your opinion – yesterday Laila Harre was on the radio, and even she admitted that Labour was utterly misguided passing the EFB. Is she a hater and/or a wrecker too?

    [lprent: About r0b. I’ve met r0b – he isn’t the Rob Salmond who runs 08wire.
    As usual WhaleOil is blowing crap out of his arse. But I’ve come to expect that many people who read some of the right-wing blogs appear to have a very high sucker quotient. They seem to believe almost any crap if it fits their prejudices.
    I thought you were less credulous that that. ]

  42. RedLogix 42

    Dean,

    Your accusation might carry some merit IF you could:

    1) Identify the exact nature of the mistake that lead to the incorrect Kyoto obligation for NZ.

    2) Identify WHO made the error and why.

    Surprise me.

  43. r0b 43

    It’s everyone else’s fault – NEVER the governments.

    Oh no I’m sure it’s Helen Clark’s fault personally that the initial Kyoto prediction was wrong. She probably forgot to carry the three. What was she thinking?!

    Really, r0b. I know you used to work for her

    Apparently Dean you don’t know squat. I can state quite categorically that I have never worked for Helen Clark. If you happen to subscribe to poor Whale’s theory as to my sooper sekrit real world identity then you’re as sadly stoopid as the Whale himself.

    PS: off topic but I would be interested in your opinion – yesterday Laila Harre was on the radio, and even she admitted that Labour was utterly misguided passing the EFB. Is she a hater and/or a wrecker too?

    Not as far as I know Dean. Do you think she might be part of John Key’s plan to reduce worker’s wages?

  44. Macro 44

    Kyoto was an agreement reached by 200 countries 15 years ago, and National was the then Govt. SO YOU RIGHT WING NUTS it wasn’t Labour who initially proposed the Kyoto protocol – it was Simon Upton who was the then Minister for the Environment who agreed to the Protocol that was then Ratified by Labour.
    The reasons for the projected $500 mill cost (rather than windfall) are many and varied – Shane Austin driving his tractor up the steps of Parliament being one (ie the Carbon Tax was unpopular) – and so we as a country must wear the cost of Dairy farmers Carbon emissions. And they say our farmers are unsubsidised!! RUBBISH.
    We haven’t been too smart about planting trees. You could say these are govt policies – or lack of. I don’t see anything from National that would make any difference here either.

  45. Andrew 45

    The Kyoto protocol in theory is a decent one. The problem is that the worlds biggest polluters have not signed up to it. USA and China produce well over half the worlds emissions, but are not in Kyoto. So therefore, nothing the other 200 odd countries does will make one bit of difference to the CO2 emissions of the world.

    New Zealand has 0.1 of 1% of the world’s population, and accounts for 0.1 of 1% of global emissions

    “If all countries in the world were to emit CO2 at levels similar to New Zealand’s, we (The UN) would exceed our sustainable carbon budget by approximately 246%.”

    http://hdrstats.undp.org/countries/country_fact_sheets/cty_fs_NZL.html

    So in a nut shell … I don’t think that paying a half billion dollars when we are totally insignificant in the worlds Co2 emissions is well spent!

  46. Draco TB 46

    More than just ourselves has to be considered in relation to GHG emissions. If we (developed nations) keep to our word then other nations are more likely to believe us in the future as well as follow suit. It’s called leading by example and has been a prime component of every single management course I’ve been on over the last 20 years. Instigating an ETS that is globally recognised will help the entire world bring those emissions under control simply because we will be seen to not only advocate reducing GHG emissions but also actively doing so.

    And, as has already been said, the only reason why it’s costing us that much is because of political opposition by those most likely to be affected by any legislation that tries to control GHGs – ie, by people who think that they shouldn’t have to pay for the damage that they cause.

  47. Matthew Pilott 47

    Andrew, we’re one of the worst countries in the world for Co2 emissions per capita.

    New Zealand has 0.1 of 1% of the world’s population, and accounts for 0.1 of 1% of global emissions

    That’s certainly not true. I believe we emit, per capita, eight times as much as China. We can hardly claim to have any green credentials if we pretend what we’re doing isn’t contributing to the problem because of scale.

    The only way something like this can change, globally, is with widespread participation. You’ll notice that the US is the only developed country that hasn’t joined now – the pressure certainly is on (and luckily for the rest of us, it is joining up, state by state) them and the developing world. What you’re basically saying is “Can’t someone else do it?” Thankfully our leaders aren’t so inclined.

  48. Andrew 48

    “Matthew Pilott – That’s certainly not true”

    That certainly is true! … Those figures are straight from the United Nations. Check it out for yourself.

  49. Dean 49

    “Oh no I’m sure it’s Helen Clark’s fault personally that the initial Kyoto prediction was wrong. She probably forgot to carry the three. What was she thinking?!”

    Who knows what she was thinking? Probably only H2, the most powerful non elected member of government this country has ever seen. You know – the woman who was refused by the electorate every time she stood?

    “Apparently Dean you don’t know squat. I can state quite categorically that I have never worked for Helen Clark. If you happen to subscribe to poor Whale’s theory as to my sooper sekrit real world identity then you’re as sadly stoopid as the Whale himself.”

    I don’t even read his weblog. On this occasion I must be mistaken and obviously was confusing you with someone else. My apologies.

    “Not as far as I know Dean. Do you think she might be part of John Key’s plan to reduce worker’s wages?”

    Oh, quite probably. Say, have you ever gotten over the EB distributing pamplets? Those naughty, bereft of chins wearers of scarves certainly had you and the party you belong to in quite the hissy fit a while ago. Thank god for the EFB, because now the sanctity of our electoral process is safeguarded!

  50. r0b 50

    On this occasion I must be mistaken and obviously was confusing you with someone else. My apologies.

    Cheers Dean, apology accepted, and my apologies too for my phrasing, I was apparently in a grumpy mood last night. And as for the rest, I’m not in the mood for further sparring, so goodnight.

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