Nats’ climate negligence

Written By: - Date published: 7:35 am, November 13th, 2014 - 39 comments
Categories: climate change, ETS, global warming - Tags: , , , ,

Yesterday China and America announced a landmark carbon deal:

US and China strike deal on carbon cuts in push for global climate pact

The United States and China have unveiled a secretly negotiated deal to reduce their greenhouse gas output, with China agreeing to cap emissions for the first time and the US committing to deep reductions by 2025.

China, the biggest emitter of greenhouse gases in the world, has agreed to cap its output by 2030 or earlier if possible. Previously China had only ever pledged to reduce the rapid rate of growth in its emissions. Now it has also promised to increase its use of energy from zero-emission sources to 20% by 2030. The United States has pledged to cut its emissions to 26-28% below 2005 levels by 2025.

[Obama] “This is a major milestone in US-China relations and shows what is possible when we work together on an urgent global challenge.”

Yesterday the small island nations begged the world for help:

Unite or drown: Campaign against climate change

The president of the Seychelles has urged the planet’s small island nations to unite for an unprecedented campaign against climate change or else drown. The rallying call came at the start of a two-day summit of the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS), a coalition of small island and low-lying coastal countries, to prepare for global climate talks to take place in Lima, Peru in December.

“Let us be heard on every beach and every roadside. Let us be heard in Beijing, in Delhi, in Johannesburg, in London, in Moscow, in New York, in Paris, in Rio. Let us be heard in every village, in every town, in every city of the world. Let us be heard on the airwaves,” he said. “We cannot accept that climate change be treated as an inevitability. We cannot accept that any island be lost to sea level rise. We cannot accept that our islands be submerged by the rising oceans.”

Yesterday our Ministry for the Environment released its Briefing for Incoming Ministers, highlighting just how appalling NZ’s record is. Generation Zero sums up:

MfE briefing highlights urgent need for Climate Change Act

The projections show that under current policy settings, New Zealand’s annual net emissions (including forestry) will rise rapidly to over 100 million tonnes of CO2 equivalent by 2025; an increase of more than 50% above 1990 levels. This is at odds with the Government’s own unconditional emissions targets of 5% below 1990 levels by 2020, and 50% below 1990 levels by 2050.

“These latest figures and warnings from the Ministry for the Environment show once again that the Government has no plan to reduce New Zealand’s carbon pollution,” says Generation Zero policy spokesperson Paul Young.

“Despite the increasingly stark warnings from climate scientists and the promises to do our fair share, it’s all talk and no action. Not only is this morally reprehensible, it is economically dumb and it will cost us.”


Here’s another pertinent graph:


One of the first things the Nats did on achieving office in 2008 was to gut the Emissions Trading Scheme. They are stupid, greedy, shortsighted, irresponsible, short-term thinkers, negligent of their global responsibilities.

39 comments on “Nats’ climate negligence ”

  1. vto 1

    It will all fall on deaf ears as this government, its cronies in Fed Farmers, it business hacks like Graeme Harrison of Anzco, and its general supporters will close their eyes and cry …. la la la ,,,, not listening not listening …… tra la la …….

    …must irrigate …. must cut down kauri ….. must dig coal ……… must take more fish …… must build more roads ………

    they really are the great unthinkers

    the Neanderthals of our time

  2. Chooky 2

    and Matthew Hooton does PR spins for John Key and Nact ( on radio nz nineto noon)…all his comments on climate change should be set out and exposed for all to see

  3. srylands 3

    Reducing greenhouse emissions has always been a particulalrly costly prospect for New Zealand. There is a good case for New Zealand’s target to be adjusted to reflect this higher cost. Indeed, this cost differential is the rationale for international emissions trading.

    These points are made well in this (redacted) Treasury briefing on climate change, which was also released yesterday. It is more informative than the MfE one.

    • RedLogix 3.1

      Consider then the informative graph on Page 8 of this briefing titled: Figure One: New Zealand’s Net Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Current Targets to 2030 .

      Note carefully how from a little after 2005 through to about 2009 (when Labours ETS was in operation) NZ’s nett GHG’s were declining.

      Note carefully how after 2009 when National began dismantling the ETS they resume rising steeply.

      And then contemplate exactly which party is responsible for this ‘cost’ you are talking about.

    • Draco T Bastard 3.2

      Actually, reducing GHG emissions isn’t costly at all – keeping them is.

  4. Pat O'Dea 4

    Do you remember the movie that came out ten years ago starring Dennis Quaid called “The Day After Tomorrow”?
    Released in May 2004, DAT was the first ever main stream movie about climate change.





    Yes. Certainly. But no more than every other Hollywood blockbuster plot that is deliberately exaggerated, and condensed, and changed to maximum dramatic effect for better box office returns.

    Its called entertainment

    But ten years later you can now watch the real live version unfold in real time, on the news channels.

    “Well I think it’s happening”

    “What can we do?”

    Unfortunately, not as entertaining in real life.

  5. The Republicans will sabotage Obama’s attempts. Waiting around for democracies to do anything about it is pointless.

    • RedLogix 5.1

      Here’s an acerbic and credible response to the US mid-terms. Jim Wright is an interesting guy:

      I strongly suspect the ongoing GOP victory dance will be short lived.

      The last time Republicans controlled both houses of Congress and the presidency, we got, hmmm, well, okay, lets see, we got the worst terrorist attack in history followed by two wars, one of which turned out to be under false pretexts but what the heck, right? So long as we’re bombing brown people, it’s all good. And hey, it wasn’t all for nothing, we got the Great Recession sparked by the mortgage industry collapse followed by a complete implosion of the investment banking industry which led to record high unemployment rates. So, then Republicans cut taxes and borrowed a couple trillion from China and deferred the payments to the next administration and America went from a budget surplus to the biggest debt increase since Reagan. The good news, of course, was that recession and war had almost no effect whatsoever on the rich and they grew enormously more wealthy from their failed business ventures while either blowing up our jobs or shipping them to India. And that’s the real difference between the Great Depression and the Great Recession: In a depression the rich take to jumping out windows and swallowing bullets, in a recession they just get richer while the rest of us lose our homes and livelihoods.

      Oh – and the Mitchells, Abbots and Harpers retros of this world are just a reflection of our own inner demons:

    • Draco T Bastard 5.2

      Colbert Report: The Republicans’ Inspiring Climate Change Message

      Waiting around for democracies to do anything about it is pointless.

      Actually, we don’t have a democracy but a plutocracy where the elected representatives do what the rich want them to do.

  6. Tracey 6

    china and usa have agreed to maybe do some stuff at a future time yet to be determined…

    • You’ve got it in one Tracey

      • Tracey 6.1.1

        I sometimes do

        • Macro

          Actually you haven’t tracey – the agreement in a nutshell is this
          “China agreeing to shift further to renewables and to peak its emissions by 2030, and the US agreeing to a 28% cut on its 2005 emissions (16% from 1990) by 2025.”
          Note the phrase – “peak its emissions”.
          To do that is going to require a good deal of honest work at developing renewables; noting that China as the manufacturing centre of the world, and is actually carrying a large portion of the world’s GHG emissions exported by us and USA and almost every where else to them, as we buy their product (the result of their GHG emissions). So for China to peak its emissions by 2030 means in effect that the whole world will peak its emissions by 2030. Except of course for us. We lead the world in increasing per capita emissions. Because we effectively have no target whatsoever. Nor any plan to achieve it.

          • Poission

            China has a very well developed strategy to reduce emissions,buy gas from Russia.

            the UK for example in its dash for gas,between 1990 and 1995 replaced as feedstock the equiv. of 20% of its coal fired power stations with improved efficiency technology that utilized North sea gas.The result being a 60% decrease in co2 emissions for the same output,and a total reduction of 12% in total emissions from that sector.

          • Tracey

            We will see. Kyoto had some targets too.

            • Macro

              We will see if a managed economy achieves targets vis a vis a “free market” economy. I think we will find that China performs better in this regard. Bear in mind that they already have well developed solar and hydro in their mix. They are also the largest producers of Electric cars and other vehicles. They are planning and building transitional cities – totally self sufficient. In many respects they are are way ahead of us in the game. All the Nats talk of being “fast followers” is just so much bullshit. We are heading in the opposite direction.

              The right wings view of Climate Change:

      • Troy 6.1.2

        Really? China invested 56 Billion USD in renewable energy in 2013 and is now home to 24% of all the worlds renewables. That would make China #1 in renewable capacity, new installations, and investment. China have also started pricing emissions in 7 regional cap and trade schemes and will launch the world’s largest carbon market in 2016.

        All promises those Chinese…. right Matthew?

        New Zealand on the other hand has turned our only meaningful mitigation measure, an emissions trading scheme, into a carbon pollution subsidy and complained loudly about how hard it is to reduce our emissions.

    • Draco T Bastard 6.2

      New U.S.-China climate deal is a game changer

      It’s an agreement without being an agreement so that the Republicans can’t renege on it.

  7. Skinny 8

    Not a lot will happen here in New Zealand when you consider a couple of our major earners are Milk & Logs. Both are big on green house gas emissions, pine tree’s and farting cows. Expect coal to kick in again as the demand lifts. We can’t really be trumpeting a clean green image can we.

  8. TheContrarian 9

    At least John Key ain’t as bad as this fucking idiot. it would be funny if he wasn’t, you know, deciding policy.

  9. greywarshark 10

    I like the image that you have chosen – Fossil of the day with suitable background. Great.

  10. Jenny 11

    At the risk of being banned again.

    I am sorry that you saw fit not to publish your promised post on the Bail Out of Solid Energy, I am sure it would have been informative.

    Not only that, it would have started the conversation on what a Labour led government should, or shouldn’t concretely do, about climate change.

    I am sorry that this debate has still not been had out.

    But it needs to be.

    Polls show that action on climate change is extremely popular, more than 60% of the population want the government to do more.

    “The news isn’t good for Prime Minister John Key, with 15.4 per cent saying he’s doing the right amount, 26.1 per cent saying he should do more, and 34.5 per cent saying he should do much more. Just 2.7 per cent want him to do less.”

    Horizon Poll August 10, 2012

    What is bad news for the Prime Minister should be good news for the Opposition. But of course, only if the Opposition take up the opposite, diametrically opposed viewpoint.

    In practice this means whoever becomes the next leader, at the earliest opportunity, needs to announce, that a Labour/Green administration will halt all deep sea oil drilling, and fracking, and will prohibit any new coal mines, and most important of all, explain why.

    It’s not that hard all the evidence is in, all we have to argue is that the future of human civilisation and our children’s welfare is at stake, and we in this country need to take a stand.

    John Key and the National Government will have no response. There can be none.

    They will be left gobsmacked and left looking wanting.

    (too bad they weren’t)

    [lprent: It would probably help if you said who are you were talking to. Then I wouldn’t have to waste my time answering.

    1. I haven’t bothered to look this up, but based on your usual practices. You will almost certainly have lied about a “promised post” because you appear to have a congenital issue dealing with phrases like “I’ll try to… “. These and many similar phrases do not constitute a promise. They merely give an intent.

    2. If you read the about, you will find that is stated in there that authors write what they feel important, that they have an inspiration to write about, and when they have time. I don’t like fools like yourself trying to tell them what to do because the balance between wanting to write posts and not wanting to write them is a fine balance at the best of times – ask anyone who writes. In blogging it is often tipped by maniacs who keep making judgmental personal “observations” like yours based on lying. You must have noticed this yourself because I routinely reflect your own judgmental observations back on to you, just like I am doing here. You don’t seem to like it – why do you think that others would?

    3. I also really don’t like people who play at being victims as a way of not dealing with their own inadequacies. Your “poor brave me” fantasies like the one above when you don’t appear to have any good reason for it just piss me off. About half of the time I ban you purely because you try it repeatably.

    4. The NZLP tends to do most of their policy development inside the party processes. They don’t do that much on the pages of The Standard. Have you ever thought of actually trying to go inside a political party and trying to change their policy platforms or convincing those looking at the jobs or wanting regional economic development? Or for that matter even actually going and reading their policy platform and actual policies. Your clear inability to do so in the past for both the NZLP and the Greens has rather crippled your previous arguments because you have resorted to simply lying about their policies (and has resulted in bans). Looking at your comment, it is clear that you have still been too damn lazy to do so again. Do you want a repeat?

    5. What is even more irritating is that you could have easily phrased all of your comment above as a request rather than a objectionable demand. It would have probably got a courteous response from whoever you were referring to. But more importantly I wouldn’t have to have wasted my time responding. Could you perhaps think about how you request things in the future.

    But I’m really kind of tired of accommodating you. Next time I ban you it will be fully permanent. It is clear that you are neither listening or learning how not to attract my attention. Instead you carry on demanding rather than requesting. I really can’t be bothered expending more effort on you. ]

    • Draco T Bastard 11.1

      that a Labour/Green administration will halt all deep sea oil drilling, and fracking, and will prohibit any new coal mines, and most important of all, explain why.

      Actually, that’s not what needs to be done except the fracking which does need to be banned. Those resources are useful by themselves and have many uses. The problem is that our society tends to burn them which causes anthropogenic climate change. What this means is that what the government needs to do is put in place legislation banning the sale of those resources for burning. In fact, I think the government should take ownership of those resources as they’re brought to the surface and pay the companies a fixed price for doing it.

      The other thing that needs to happen is the close down of all fossil fuel based generation and to do that we need to build a lot of wind farms and solar paneling to put on houses and businesses. We also need to build up PT transport that uses that renewable energy until the point where we can ban personal ownership of cars.

    • mickysavage 11.2

      “I am sorry that you saw fit not to publish your promised post on the Bail Out of Solid Energy, I am sure it would have been informative.”

      I promised one at some stage and actually posted it at

  11. coaster 12

    99.875 % of the worlds climate scientists agree that we have global warming due to carbon emmisions. They also agree that this warming will have adverse effects on the human race within the next 50 years if we dont reduce carbon emmisions significantly mmediately.

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