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Megan Woods’ speech to the Petroleum Conference

Written By: - Date published: 12:49 pm, March 29th, 2018 - 18 comments
Categories: climate change, Environment, global warming, labour, science, sustainability - Tags:

Text of Megan Woods’s speech recently delivered to the Petroleum Conference from Scoop.

As a politician, you never want to start by disappointing your audience, but in situations like this I’ve always found it’s best to be upfront. I have no intention to keep you on the edges of your seats in a “will she or won’t she” pantomime. It’s not my style.

So, I won’t be announcing Block Offer 2018 today.

As the Prime Minister has said, the Government is actively considering this issue, and we’ll have an announcement in the coming weeks.

I know this is an issue everyone here is incredibly interested in, so while I can’t give you an announcement, I do want to spend time today and tell you as plainly as I can the role this Government sees for our upstream energy sector, and I do want to give you an idea of the principles and framework we will bring to decisions about any future exploration permits.

I know that the investment decisions and the planning for projects that people in this room make have enormous lead times and involve huge amounts of money. You have told me that what you value most is certainty and predictability.

So today I want to lay out where we come from when we make decisions like this, the approach we will be taking, and the analysis we bring to bear on these issues.

Our approach in this area comes from the type of Government we want to be.

One that is responsible and manages change well, but that does not shy away from making tough calls and grappling with big issues.

One that will put the well-being and living standards of New Zealanders at the core of everything we do.

We see the mission of our time in office as rebuilding much of the social and economic infrastructure of our country that has not been invested in enough over the last nine years.

And we see it as our mission to face up to the major coming challenges that have not been well addressed.

We stand for transformational change – moving to an economy that is sustainable, inclusive and productive.

That is this Government’s overriding economic aim.

We aim to shape an economy where we work smarter, make better use of our resources, ensure everyone who wants to work can work, and ensure that the benefits of growth are spread across society

And we aim to shape an economy that is sustainable, that is not prone to major shocks, and that meets our obligations to our Paris commitments.

And that means having a plan to responsibly transition towards a low carbon economy.

Our goals in this area are ambitious and plainly stated.

A carbon neutral economy by 2050.

100% renewable electricity, in a normal hydrological year, by 2035.

These targets commit us to a long term transition away from fossil fuels and towards renewable energy.

Now, I am keenly aware that the need for this transition is not new to anyone in this room.

I know that the old stereotypes of the energy sector are simply not true today and that industry itself is well aware that the days of complete reliance on fossil fuels are over.

And I want to congratulate your sector on the steps you are taking to support this transition.

You understand the need and you are taking action.

That’s why the IEA reports that globally in 2017, investment in electricity surpassed investment in oil and gas for the first time ever.

It’s why the World Bank has announced it will no longer finance upstream oil and gas extraction after 2019.

It’s why Statoil, for example has introduced an internal price on carbon for all its projects and has adopted a climate assessment and is even changing its name to Equinor, to reflect the changing nature of its business.

It’s why by 2035 Shell aims to have achieved a 20% reduction in the carbon footprint of the energy it sells, and 50% reduction by 2050.

It’s why the industry has come together to invest in the Oil and Gas Climate Initiative, which will deliver one billion dollars’ worth of research into new  projects initiatives and technological solutions to reduce carbon emissions.

So I acknowledge that the need for a transition is widely understood in this industry and I congratulate you on the steps you have taken to support it.

And likewise, the need for a transition is now gaining bipartisan political support.

I acknowledge the new leader of the opposition said in an interview on March the 3rd of this year that he acknowledges the need for a transition.

So it is widely agreed that this transition needs to happen.

The question is what kind of transition we will have, and how it will impact the well-being of our people, our businesses, our economy and our environment.

Those of you who have heard me speak before will know I am passionate believer in the idea of a just, well-managed transition.

I don’t want to see an abrupt transition that leaves industries stagnant, communities without a future and individuals without hope.

What I want to see is a clear, transparent and well managed pathway to a new economy.

And that means we must develop a clear plan, that will allow for informed investment decisions to be made and that will support communities that currently rely on fossil fuel extraction.

In our Government we know that this transition cannot happen suddenly.

But we know that to quote a famous New Zealander, it won’t happen overnight, but it will happen.

And that means we need to be preparing now.

In our view there are two choices, bury our head in the sand and assume the transition will take care of itself, or be responsible and make plans now for our future.

No one is talking about making abrupt, jarring change in our economy and by planning now, that is what we can avoid.

Here in this country, we’ve learned all too well how much damage changes like that can do.

Like our Prime Minister, I grew up in the 1980s a time of dislocating social and economic change.

I watched people in the community where I grew up lose jobs that had supported our community for decades.

I watched people lose their jobs, their hope, and their dignity.

I watched as families were displaced and communities were gutted.

I will not be part of a Government that allows something like that to happen again.

I don’t want New Zealand to be the country that rips the rug out from under businesses, communities and individuals because we didn’t have a plan to deal with the future.

If we have the courage to think long term now we can avoid that.

If we raise our eyes and get ahead of the curve with a long term plan, we can ensure a better future.

And New Zealander’s get this.

They want leaders who think beyond the 3 year election cycle and plan for the long term.

And let’s be clear, we’ve got the time to get this right.

These are ten and twenty and thirty year timelines we are talking about.

In order to avoid shocks and disruptions as we undergo these structural adjustments, it is imperative that we have robust across-government transition planning that is well connected to industry and workforce.

This planning must address the challenges posed by a changing climate and create new opportunities for our businesses and industry – and importantly, secure the jobs of the future.

We’ve already said that region by region our Government will be drawing up robust economic development plans. Minister Jones and his Provincial Growth Fund will once again deliver jobs to our regions.

Alongside this work, we need to be thinking about how to connect the transition to a low carbon future to the resurgence of our regions.

We also need to be connecting the dots to workforce planning.

We need to be thinking about the qualifications and skills this economic transformation will require.

It is this kind of joined up thinking from a progressive and future-focused government that will ensure that we minimise the shocks and ensure a “just transition” to a low-carbon economy.

As a Labour Minister of Energy and Resources, this really matters to me.

For over a century a stable job with decent pay and conditions has been the guiding principle of the labour mission.

Our job in the twenty-first century is to ensure that our industries and workforce currently employed in high-emission industries are not consigned to the scrap heap as we respond to the shocks of unplanned and urgent economic upheaval.

Instead, it means starting immediately to put in place across-government transition planning to build a stronger, fairer and more sustainable economy.

That’s why I have asked MBIE to begin this important transition planning role.

We will be having conversations across Government.

We’ll be talking about how Energy and Resources decisions link up with Regional Economic Development and the Provincial Growth Fund.

How these in turn link with education decisions and the need for workforce planning.

And then how all of this fits with investment in innovation.

I am aware that you want to be part of this conversation and I want you to be a part of this planning.

The work that we undertake will be tripartite.

We will bring industry, the workforce and government together to develop a plan.

Over the coming months we will be asking you to join us and it is my sincere hope that as an industry you take up this offer.

It will be against this backdrop of transitions planning, that we make our decisions around future block offers.

There are several points I want to make crystal clear today.

One, no one is suggesting changing any existing permit or project.

Two, we are not talking about losing jobs or revenue that already exist or investments which have already been planned or committed to.

Three, no one is talking about shutting off our supply of fuels we need to keep our country and economy running strongly.

This Government is well aware of the huge importance of peaking to ensure security of electricity supply.

That’s why our commitment around the pathway to 100% renewable energy by 2035 contains the phrase in a normal hydrological year.

And we know we have ten years or so of natural gas consented for drilling, and potentially many more years that could be discovered under existing exploration permits. Some of these permits run as late as 2046.

They are not under threat.

Fourth, I want to make clear that we will be providing a step by step plan to take us right through until 2050.

This work will be led by an Independent Climate Commission, who will develop carbon budgets planning us right through to 2050.

This will deliver the certainty and stability of policy that are vital for the industry.

I note that the UK has made real strides in this area through strong bi-partisan co-operation.

Here in New Zealand, we should be aiming for a multi-party approach.

Because the people on the ICC won’t be politicians or work to a political timetable.

They’ll be experts tasked with developing a long term economic plan that moves us away from carbon emissions while also protecting the security of our energy supply and ensuring we have access to the energy we need as a country.

And as I have said our Government will take action to support communities that currently rely on fuels that are being phased out.

Our Government’s Provincial Growth Fund and Green Investment Fund will invest billions of dollars in local infrastructure and clean energy projects in areas like this.

We’ll work alongside local mayors, businesses, unions, economic development agencies and councils to identify the projects with the best business cases and consult the local community every step of the way.

And we’ll do more to support innovation to create new jobs in new industries.

That’s why our Government will be introducing a research and development tax incentive, so that companies can claim money back on every dollar they spend on R and D.

It’s why we will lift New Zealand’s spending on R and D to 2% of GDP, to bring us in line with the OECD.

This will mean New Zealand can transition to a cleaner economy, protect our planet while still providing high paying jobs that support families.

That’s what we can achieve if we have a plan.

And I want to emphasise today that once we have our carbon budgets and our clear path forward, our Government will consult and work with industry on every step we take along this path to transition.

We are a Government that listens, then acts. That consults widely, thinks through issues deeply and seeks to forge consensus on how we can take New Zealand forward together.

We want to work with you to make this a transition that works for everyone.

Government cannot do it alone.

There is no doubt in my mind that climate change will drive the most significant economic transformation in modern history.

The transition to a low-carbon or a net-zero carbon economy will be as transformational as the industrial revolution was to the societies and economies in the nineteenth century.

We need to work with industry, with businesses, with community groups and with individuals around the country to ensure this transition protects jobs, supports communities, and leads us to a better, fairer future.

That’s what we can deliver together and I look forward to working with all of you to make it happen.

18 comments on “Megan Woods’ speech to the Petroleum Conference”

  1. Draco T Bastard 1

    One that will put the well-being and living standards of New Zealanders at the core of everything we do.

    We see the mission of our time in office as rebuilding much of the social and economic infrastructure of our country that has not been invested in enough over the last nine years.

    And we see it as our mission to face up to the major coming challenges that have not been well addressed.

    We stand for transformational change – moving to an economy that is sustainable, inclusive and productive.

    That is this Government’s overriding economic aim.

    Then they failed at it the moment the agreed to sign the TPPA.

    We’ll work alongside local mayors, businesses, unions, economic development agencies and councils to identify the projects with the best business cases and consult the local community every step of the way.

    And this is how you destroy a community.

    We don’t want what’s best for business. We need what is best for the community. The two do not always align. In fact, the Great Depression and the GFC indicate that they never align.

    That’s why our Government will be introducing a research and development tax incentive, so that companies can claim money back on every dollar they spend on R and D.

    Considering that the R&D a company does is fully tax deductible as a business expense does this mean that the NZ government will be giving subsidies for what the business would be doing anyway?

    It’s why we will lift New Zealand’s spending on R and D to 2% of GDP, to bring us in line with the OECD.

    We’re a small country which means that we actually need to spend more on R&D just to keep up. Better to start the transition to 25% of the workforce in R&D now.

    • Drowsy M. Kram 1.1

      Decent investment in R&D is a great idea. Unfortunately, many of NZ’s best STEM graduates head overseas for further training and/or work, and they don’t all come back.

      Still, a great idea to try to grow opportunities for Research (including basic research) and Development in NZ, accompanied by increased investment in STEM education.

    • Phil 1.2

      And don’t forget the stupidity of:

      “ensure that the benefits of growth are spread across society…

      And we aim to shape an economy that is sustainable”

      Our environmental impact is already well into overshoot with ecosystem collapse and biodiversity loss becoming noticable to all. It is clear that economic growth is entirely incompatable with a sustainable economy.

  2. Ad 2

    “…if we have a plan.”

    Had 9 years to have a plan ffs.
    Get your shit together Megan.

    • Draco T Bastard 2.1

      Chances are Labour do have a plan but that plan will change with consultation with other groups – as good plans do.

      Planning Is Everything. The Plan Is Nothing.

      In reality, most plans are rendered useless almost as soon as they are put in motion. There is still some value in the original plan, however. It defines the goal or the outcome we desire. And that’s the most important part of the original plan – that the destination is clear; the reason you’re on the journey in the first place.

      Really, it’s you who needs to get your shit together and stop being an arsehole through your ignorance.

      • Ad 2.1.1

        – no reference to Carbon Zero an or impending legislation

        – no strong targets to hold themselves accountable

        – no integration of policies or programmes

        – scant regard for climate change

        – tonnes of praise and carrot, no regulatory sticks

        – spectacular abstract nouns, buzzword bingo, noise masquerading as cohesion.

        – 9 years to figure it out.

        Compare all that to Twyford and Parker: plan, budget, enforce, deliver from day one.

        Keep your insults where they belong.

        Eisenhower had the Marshall Plan and delivered wholesale transformation of Europe within a clear policy framework.

        • alwyn 2.1.1.1

          “Eisenhower had the Marshall Plan and delivered wholesale transformation of Europe within a clear policy framework”.

          I thought that I had a reasonable knowledge of Post WW II history but this is news to me.
          The Marshall Plan ran for four years stating in April 1948.
          It is certainly true that Eisenhower was in Europe for part of that time. He was Supreme Commander of NATO Forces in Europe from the beginning of 1951 until about April 1952, but that had nothing to do with the Marshall Plan.

          Indeed quite a lot of the NATO countries at that time had no involvement in the Marshall Plan, and about half those who received Marshall Aid were not in NATO.
          By the time he became President the Marshall Plan was over.
          What do you actually mean by the statement I have quoted?

          • Ad 2.1.1.1.1

            You need a better grip on the relationship between Truman’s Marshall Plan and Eisenhower’s continuance of anti-communist policies from Truman.

            Both originate in Marshall’s patronage of Eisenhower through the war.

            • In Vino 2.1.1.1.1.1

              alwyn does try to be a punctilious nit-picker. By the time he was President, Eisenhower knew which side of the bread the anti-Russian butter was on..

            • alwyn 2.1.1.1.1.2

              In other words you meant to say Truman but gave the wrong name.
              Hey, accidents happen.

              • Incognito

                Alwyn, an accident is when you cannot find a public toilet in time. A mistake is when you go to the wrong sex toilet. An error is when it turns out there is no toilet paper.

    • Chris 2.2

      “We see the mission of our time in office as rebuilding much of the social and economic infrastructure of our country that has not been invested in enough over the last nine years.”

      More like 27+ years, and that’s excluding rogernomics. What’s alarming is that Woods thinks investment in social and economic infrastructure between 1999 and 2008 was fine. Until Labour acknowledges the Clark years were a disaster expect more of the same.

  3. Incognito 3

    I think this was a good scene-setting speech that was well-tailored for her audience. I wonder how they received it.

  4. Jenny 4

    Aspirational?

    Or, Actual?

    Some time in the future?

    Or, now?

    We are about to find out.

    “Stop Te Kuha Coal Mine”
    350.org Aotearoa

    The Buller District Council has just granted resource consent for Te Kuha mine, a 109 hectare opencast coal mine on the West Coast, but the government has yet to decide whether to allow the miners to take the top off the mountain – the 12 hectares that are part of the Mt Rochfort Conservation Park.

    The Department of Conservation has stated that this area is “recognised as nationally and internationally unique and for having very high ecological and conservation value.” It contains Great Spotted Kiwi and other rare and endangered species and plants.

    We have until the end of January to make it clear that Te Kuha and all new coal projects are not Aotearoa’s future, so we have teamed up with Coal Action Network to stop this project in its tracks.

    http://350.org.nz/stop-te-kuha-coal-mine/

    And as I have said our Government will take action to support communities that currently rely on fuels that are being phased out.

    Our Government’s Provincial Growth Fund and Green Investment Fund will invest billions of dollars in local infrastructure and clean energy projects in areas like this.

    Megan Woods

    So will Megan Woods cancel the proposed new coal mine project at Te Kuha, or not?

    Will Megan Woods use the Provincial Growth Fund to invest “in local infrastructure and clean energy projects in areas like this”, instead?

    Or is this a task for some future administration some decades down the track?

    We will soon know.

    “COAL IS 100% NOT OUR FUTURE!”
    “#KEEPITINTHEGROUND”

    CANA

    It’s astonishing and appalling that a Government that says all the right words about the need for action on climate change may nevertheless let a new coal mine go ahead on the West Coast, when it could stop that mine with the stroke of a pen.

    We’re calling on the responsible Ministers, Labour’s Megan Woods and the Greens’ Eugenie Sage, to do the right thing for our country, our climate and our planet and say “No!” to this project.

    http://coalaction.org.nz/network/350/last-chance-to-sign-petition-to-save-te-kuha-from-coal-mining-closes-this-sunday-18-march

  5. cleangreen 5

    “We need to work with industry, with businesses, with community groups and with individuals around the country to ensure this transition protects jobs, supports communities, and leads us to a better, fairer future.”

    Finally someone inside Labour are saying what jacinda promised as a Government of “inclusion” & “‘giving every one a voice” when Meagan Woods said We need to work with “community groups” among those in business.

    Our NGO is a Community Advocacy Centre for 17 yrs now; and worked with the last Labour government and had some discussions with the National Party so we are waiting for some real “active consultation with the Government” on this issue Meagan please.

    Firstly we want to see all regional rail services re-instated and future plan for electric locomotives.beginning with East Coast rail Napier to Gisborne and Northland rail services started again and begin a plan to electrify those lines we need again to carry the export freight that now will increase 3 times between now and 2035 according to the MOT reports.
    “Lets do this” – for our planet and our children’s future.

  6. Jenny 6

    “I know that the investment decisions and the planning for projects that people in this room make have enormous lead times and involve huge amounts of money. You have told me that what you value most is certainty and predictability.”

    Megan Woods
    Speech to the Petroleum Conference

    So does the fossil fuel lobby have the certainty they “value most”?

    Maybe, Maybe not.

    If I was them I would pull out now.

    Despite Megan Woods comments that the government will not cancel existing permits to prospect for (and exploit) new oil and gas reserves,

    It is my opinion that it is still quite possible that the wider body politic could put an end to the current search for new fossil fuel reserves in this country.

    This project will require judicial activism backed up by extra-judicial activism, and parliamentary action, strengthened and reinforced by extra-parliamentary action.

    Everyone who wants to, will be able to contribute, and take part.

    Politicians don’t act in a vacuum, politics is all about pressure.

    Despite all the attempts by the corporate sector to put legal restrictions on our parliament to curtail parliament’s independence and to undermine parliament’s democratically mandated authority, (the TPPA being just one example), parliament is still the highest deciding court in this country. Parliament still has the power to make or unmake laws as they see fit.

    Ultimately it will depend on which side can put the most pressure on our parliamentarians to take action, or not take action.

    Call: He aha te mea nui o te ao?

    Response: He tangata, he tangata, he tangata

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    4 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 7
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    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    4 days ago
  • RIP The Listener, New Zealand’s pioneering voice
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    4 days ago
  • OK, Britney: stop sniping at National for doing its job
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    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    4 days ago
  • Helpful tips for parents during lockdown
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    4 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #13, 2020
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  • Hungary is now a dictatorship
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    5 days ago
  • A new Ministry of Works
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Capture: Well spaced out
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    5 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 6
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    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    5 days ago
  • March ’20 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
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    5 days ago
  • Hard News: Poll Pot and the partisans
    Yesterday's Horizon poll showing support for a "Yes" vote in this year's cannabis referendum sliding into the majority for the first time in a year looked like good news for reformers – and it probably is. But the result warrants some scrutiny.The poll is the fifth in a series commissioned ...
    5 days ago
  • Why those bubbles are so important
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    5 days ago
  • A Government System That Works
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    5 days ago
  • Smashing down the barriers: Where are we at with COVID vaccines?
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    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    5 days ago
  • National Network on Cuba (USA): “Cuban medical solidarity is a pillar of its society and is founde...
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    5 days ago
  • Alarming decrease in calves increases fears for endangered Hector’s dolphin
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    SciBlogsBy Otago Marine Science
    5 days ago
  • Time for Grant Robertson to reveal package #2?
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    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    6 days ago
  • Saving lives
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 5
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    6 days ago
  • Speaker: Les Gray: the man who told the truth
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    6 days ago
  • Why now? Historical specificity and the perfect storm that has created trans identity politics
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    7 days ago
  • Time for a living wage for supermarket workers
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    7 days ago
  • Hard News: MUSIC: Lockdown Grooves
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    7 days ago
  • A place of greater safety?
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    7 days ago
  • The police and public trust
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    7 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 4
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    7 days ago
  • COVID-19 vs New Zealand
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    7 days ago
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    7 days ago
  • Rāhui day 4
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  • Letter to a friend
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    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 3
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  • Rāhui day 3
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  • A test of civil society.
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    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 2
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    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • How Do You Feel? What Do You Think?
    Fortune's Children: Under extraordinary pressure, the leader of the Government and the leader of the Opposition will each show us what they are made of. Have they been blessed with intelligence, grace, wit, poise, toughness, empathy and humour – and in what measure? More importantly, to what extent have they ...
    1 week ago
  • Landlords are NOT an essential service
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    1 week ago
  • A “new Society” post-COVID19 will definitely emerge. The question is: on what path?
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    1 week ago
  • Raise the Bar: Everything you need to know about the wage subsidy
    Right now low waged and insecure workers are feeling the economic brunt of the looming #Covid19 Recession. In response legal advocate Toby Cooper* and hospitality and worker’s rights advocate Chloe Ann-King, are putting together a series of legal blogs about your employment rights: In this legal blog we outline some ...
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    1 week ago
  • The massacre of prisoners in Modelo jail, Bogota, March 21
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    1 week ago
  • We are not America
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • When will we know the lockdown is working?
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  • Lock Down: Day 1
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  • A Compelling Recollection.
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  • The Warehouse – where everyone gets a virus
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  • Aggressive action to address climate change could save the world $145 trillion
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  • After the Pandemic
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    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    2 weeks ago

  • Further measures to support businesses
    The Government will be introducing legislation to make changes to the Companies Act to help companies facing insolvency due to COVID-19 to remain viable and keep New Zealanders in jobs. The temporary changes include: Giving directors of companies facing significant liquidity problems because of COVID-19 a ‘safe harbour’ from insolvency ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Govt’s COVID plan, economic strength recognised
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Funding certainty for sports through COVID-19
    National sports organisations have been given certainty of funding to ensure they can remain viable through the COVID-19 pandemic, Sport and Recreation Minister Grant Robertson announced today. “The global spread of COVID-19 has had a significant impact on sport and recreation in New Zealand, including the cancellation or postponement of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Butchers now allowed to process pork
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Essential workers leave scheme established
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Govt WhatsApp helps share COVID-19 information
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Managed departure plan for stranded foreign nationals enables safe, orderly exit
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    4 days ago
  • Government delivers COVID-19 support to GPs and Pharmacies
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    4 days ago
  • Susan Thomas the new Chief High Court Judge
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    4 days ago
  • Business Finance Guarantee – applications open
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    5 days ago
  • Work starts on ways to fast-track consents to boost recovery from Covid-19 downturn
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    5 days ago
  • Advance payments to support contractors
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    5 days ago
  • Government seeks infrastructure projects
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Health system scaled up to prepare for COVID-19
    Work to scale up the health system in preparation for COVID-19 was today outlined by Health Minister David Clark, as he reported back to the new Epidemic Response Committee. “We are well placed to contain the spread of COVID-19. We have taken early and decisive action at our borders, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Essential media COVID-19 guidelines refined
    The Government is refining its COVID-19 essential business guidance to include the distribution of news publications for communities which are hard to reach. The Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media, Kris Faafoi, said the move was in recognition of the importance for New Zealanders who might be harder to ...
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    6 days ago
  • Supermarkets able to open on Easter Sunday
    The Government is ensuring supermarkets can open on Easter Sunday so we can buy groceries, but stay closed on Good Friday allowing workers to take a break. This provides a balanced approach and ensures we avoid large queues that two days closure may cause. “Supermarkets will be able to open ...
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    6 days ago
  • New Zealand defence personnel conclude mission at Taji
    Following the successful conclusion of the Building Partner Capacity (BPC) mission at Taji, New Zealand defence personnel are returning to New Zealand from Iraq, in accordance with the Cabinet decision made in June 2019, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today. “New Zealand is very ...
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    6 days ago
  • State of National Emergency extended
    The State of National Emergency to help stop the spread of COVID-19 has been extended for a further seven days, Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare said. The initial declaration on March 25 lasted seven days and can be extended as many times as necessary. “Since we went into isolation ...
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    6 days ago
  • Strong Govt books support ‘go hard, go early’ response
    New Zealand’s ability to go hard and go early in the fight against COVID-19 has been underpinned by strong Government finances and the growing economy heading into this global pandemic, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. The Treasury today released the Crown financial statements for the eight months to the end ...
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    6 days ago
  • Christchurch Hospital Hagley ICU to open to support COVID-19 response
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says 36 new intensive care beds at Christchurch Hospital’s new Hagley building are being fast tracked so they are available for treatment of COVID-19 patients.   The Ministry of Health is working with contractor CPB and Canterbury DHB to enable access to the hospital’s ICU, ...
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    6 days ago
  • Government supports Air NZ freight flights
    The Government has fast-tracked up to $1 million to help Air New Zealand move urgent freight to and from New Zealand, with the first flight to Shanghai leaving tonight, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. Phil Twyford says it’s crucial that trade in vital goods such as medical supplies and ...
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    7 days ago
  • Tariff concessions on COVID-19 related products
    New Zealand will temporarily remove tariffs on all medical and hygiene imports needed for the COVID-19 response. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker and Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Kris Faafoi said today that the New Zealand Customs Service will apply tariff concessions to all diagnostic reagents and testing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Clarification of modification to wage subsidy scheme
    Minister of Finance Grant Robertson has clarified that the changes to the wage subsidy scheme announced yesterday mean that employers should be passing on the full subsidy to workers, except in the case where the person’s normal income is less than the level of the subsidy. “We still want employers ...
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    1 week ago
  • Face masks flowing to DHBs
    Medical face masks from the national reserve supply are now being distributed to District Health Boards, while at the same time local production is being ramped up. Yesterday more than 640,000 masks were sent to DHBS – that is an immediate two week supply, with more to follow in coming ...
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    1 week ago
  • COVID-19: Further steps to protect New Zealanders’ jobs
    The Government has made modifications to the wage subsidy scheme to ensure people don’t lose their jobs during the national lockdown. These changes will soften the impact of COVID-19 on workers, families and businesses, and position them to exit the lockdown and look to recovery, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. ...
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    1 week ago
  • Tax relief for Mycoplasma Bovis farmers
    Farmers whose herds were culled in response to the outbreak of Mycoplasma bovis will be able to minimise the tax treatment of their income in some circumstances. Revenue Minister Stuart Nash says Cabinet has agreed to change the law. It means farmers may be eligible to spread their income over ...
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    1 week ago
  • $27 million for NGOs and community groups to continue providing essential services
    A $27 million dollar package, effective immediately, is being provided to social sector services and community groups to ensure they can continue to provide essential support to communities as we stay at home as a nation to stop the spread of COVID-19, Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni announced. “At ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
    “The guilty plea today will provide some relief to the many people whose lives were shattered by what happened on March 15,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. “These guilty pleas and conviction bring accountability for what happened and also save the families who lost loved ones, those who were injured, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • COVID-19 updates
    The Prime Minister is holding daily press conferences to update New Zealanders on the Government's response to COVID-19. Links to videos and transcripts of these updates below. These transcripts also include All of Government press conferences led by Director Ministry of Health's Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield. 25 March: Live update from the Prime ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Police numbers break through 10,000 mark
    Frontline Police numbers have broken through the 10,000 mark for the first time in history as officers step forward to keep the community safe during the COVID19 lockdown. “Two Police graduations in Auckland and Wellington in the past week have been conducted in unprecedented circumstances,” Police Minister Stuart Nash said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Urgent tax measures for economic recovery
    Urgent legislation has been passed to support the package of economic and social measures needed to recover from the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. “The COVID-19 Response (Taxation and Social Assistance Urgent Measures) Bill will cushion New Zealanders from the worst economic impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak,” said Revenue Minister ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Further support for farmers and growers as drought persists
    From tomorrow, Government support for farmers and growers affected by drought will be expanded and extended across the country, with access to Rural Assistance Payments (RAPS) available throughout the North Island, parts of the South Island and the Chatham Islands, Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni announced. “These challenging conditions have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • COVID-19: Temporary changes to Education Act
    Parliament has passed amendments to legislation that give the Secretary of Education stronger powers to act in the fight to limit the spread of COVID-19, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “They are part of a suite of changes passed under the COVID-19 Response (Urgent Management Measures) Legislation Bill,” Chris ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar join NZ and Singapore in committing to keeping supply a...
    Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar have joined forces with New Zealand and Singapore by committing to keep supply chains open and remove any existing trade restrictive measures on essential goods, especially medical supplies, in the face of the Covid-19 crisis.  Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker today welcomed ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • COVID-19: Rent increase freeze and more protection for tenants
    Immediate freeze on rent increases Tenancies will not be terminated during the lock-down period, unless the parties agree, or in limited circumstances Tenants who had previously given notice can stay in their if they need to stay in the tenancy during the lock-down period Tenants will still be able to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Working together to protect businesses and workers
    As New Zealand unites to lock-down in the fight against COVID-19, the Finance Minister is urging all businesses and workers to stay connected over the next four weeks. “We understand the extreme pressure many businesses are under right now. I know most business owners think of their workers as family ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • State of National Emergency declared to fight COVID-19
    A State of National Emergency has been declared across the country as the Government pulls out all the stops to curtail the spread of COVID-19. “Today we put in place our country’s second ever State of National Emergency as we fight a global pandemic, save New Zealanders’ lives and prevent ...
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  • Prime Minister’s statement on State of National Emergency and Epidemic Notice
    Mr Speaker I wish to make a Ministerial Statement under Standing Order 347 in relation to the recent declaration of a State of National Emergency. Having considered the advice of the Director Civil Defence Emergency Management, the Minister of Civil Defence declared a State of National Emergency for the whole of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
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  • Deadline for domestic travel extended
    People needing to travel on domestic flights, trains and Cook Strait ferries to get home before the country moves into level 4 lock-down tomorrow night will be able to continue using the passenger services until midnight on Friday, Transport Minister Phil Twyford said today. Domestic passenger services, particularly ferries, have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
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  • Mortgage holiday and business finance support schemes to cushion COVID impacts
    The Government, retail banks and the Reserve Bank are today announcing a major financial support package for home owners and businesses affected by the economic impacts of COVID-19. The package will include a six month principal and interest payment holiday for mortgage holders and SME customers whose incomes have been ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago