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Newspapers/govt seed scientific ignorance

Written By: - Date published: 9:12 am, March 16th, 2010 - 46 comments
Categories: climate change, Media, science - Tags:

Yesterday, the Dompost had this to say about public perceptions of science:

Science might be finally emerging from the shadows, its non-sexy status having long been reinforced by an often scientifically ignorant public, suspicious of the work many scientists do… How will the May Budget tackle the tyranny of distance and New Zealand’s lack of cash let alone the suspicion of science that permeates a sometimes ill-informed community?

Yes, why would the public be so unwilling to accept valid science, what could be causing that? Maybe we should look at this op-ed published in the Dompost today for clues:

“Now that the heat has gone out of the global warming scare,…the global warming alarmists were in full cry…won’t make a blind bit of difference to global warming, assuming such a phenomenon exists…”

Maybe, just maybe, the fact that our major newspapers print anti-science climate change denialist propaganda nearly every day has something to do with the public’s perceptions of science.

Or maybe we should be looking at the government. Despite John Key’s rhetoric about investing in innovation and his pledge to lead the world in agricultural emissions reduction research, things are going backwards in the real world. Just last week 43 jobs were lost at government agricultural science research organisation Agresearch due to budget cuts and the Government’s anti-science policies.

After all, our Prime Minister did say: “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”

46 comments on “Newspapers/govt seed scientific ignorance ”

  1. tc 1

    Scientists, academics, teachers anyone with intelligence and/or a view contrary to the idelolgy of the Nats……watch your back. Once again the msm plays their part in assisting the Nat’s dumbing down of our research/academia etc

  2. TightyRighty 2

    could you please clear up marty, once and for all, the fact that a sizeable portion of the scientific community don’t think AGW to be true? and that because our newspapers choose to print both sides of the debate, how does that make them anti-science. i would have thought the knowledge that leading pro-agw’ers were withholding info and not properly engaging in peer review was anti-science?

    • Lanthanide 2.1

      Depends on your definition of ‘sizable’, doesn’t it?

      • TightyRighty 2.1.1

        more than a few, less than many. i.e between 10-40%

        • mickysavage 2.1.1.1

          Do you have any reputable data to match that up?

          • TightyRighty 2.1.1.1.1

            did marty have any reputable data to back up his “fact that our major newspapers print anti-science climate change denialist propaganda nearly every day”? no, but you believed it like a shill.

            here we are

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_scientists_opposing_the_mainstream_scientific_assessment_of_global_warming

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Climate_change_consensus

            http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/11/15/reference-450-skeptical-peer-reviewed-papers/

            http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/07/30/american-chemical-society-members-revolting-against-their-editor-for-pro-agw-views/#more-9680

            while not all of the points referenced explicity state numbers, there is a enough dissent to make it a sizeable portion. I have discarded the oregon petition, as too many signatories can’t be attributed to people who have scientific backgrounds.

            now proof that the science is settled please, and also proof of the “fact that our major newspapers print anti-science climate change denialist propaganda nearly every day” and how it is anti-science.

            [lprent: These ‘lists’ have been long discredited.

            You notice that there are FEW working earth scientists listed. In fact it seems to mainly be chemists and engineers who have about as much idea about earth sciences as a newspaper editor (ie nothing much)…

            People have been tossed in the lists because they published a paper with a single disagreement about a facet of the IPCC report based on new data. They then find it impossible to get off the lists. For instance your third list is exactly that. But of course you don’t understand enough science to understand what the point of difference is.

            In fact I think I’ll start a list called ‘scientific idiots I’ve seen’ and add you at the top of list….. If you want to troll, then please don’t use crap links… ]

            • mickysavage 2.1.1.1.1.1

              Same old same old. Another climate debate another troll.

              • TightyRighty

                same old same old. another climate change propogandist who can’t stand to be challenged.

                again, where is the evidence of the “fact that our major newspapers print anti-science climate change denialist propaganda nearly every day’ and how it is anti-science?

                • lprent

                  For that you need to talk to Marty or r0b, or better still go and have a look at a site that looks at the articles and public statements. For instance http://www.hot-topic.co.nz

                  I don’t spend a lot of time looking at the news media on this topic. They really know jackshit from any side…

            • NickS 2.1.1.1.1.2

              Ah, What’s up with Watts, the perfect example of a pseudo-science blog if ever there was one, since Watts can’t science to save his life, let alone not fail epically at basic statistics or time-series analyses. Per all the stuff on Open Mind et al.

              But hey, who needs to be right, when you have rabid fanbois instead?

              • TightyRighty

                whose a rabid fanboy? just qouting from his blog. he’s not the only voice on climate change to get things wrong, on both sides of the debate.

                why will no one answer this question?

                again, where is the evidence of the “fact that our major newspapers print anti-science climate change denialist propaganda nearly every day’ and how it is anti-science?

                it’s not that hard. so where the hell is the answer?

                i probably shouldn’t hold my breath. this site is not one to tolerate, let alone answer, dissenting questions

              • NickS

                Except of course, Watt’s gets it constantly wrong, and when someone fraks up that much, it’s highly rational to ignore them as a source of information, unless you’re wanting to observe/debunk the stupidity.

                Also, since I’m sick, I can’t do philosophy of science due to cotton-wool-head, and thus can’t get my brain to kick out a good enough piece on what anti-science is, though I will state that one of teh skills involved in science is the ability to pick out empirically false truth claims, and to actually check out the validity of a scientific claim before pushing it as truth.

                Which the author of the Dominion Post op-ed fails to do, instead pushing long-debunked points refuted a thousand times as a truthful opinion.

                Pretty simple stuff really, and fairly easy to note it as “anti-science”, due to it rejecting scientific norms, although I’d more call it pseudo-scepticism, however the terms are interchangeable somewhat.

              • Draco T Bastard

                and how it is anti-science?

                It’s anti-science because they’re printing stuff that is completely the opposite of what the science says, marty provided a good example:
                “Now that the heat has gone out of the global warming scare, the global warming alarmists were in full cry won’t make a blind bit of difference to global warming, assuming such a phenomenon exists ‘

                They should be taken to court for lying.

            • Poptech 2.1.1.1.1.3

              Do not disregard the Oregon petition, every signatory has a degree in science,

              The qualifications of the signers are here,

              http://www.petitionproject.org/qualifications_of_signers.php

              “All of the listed signers have formal educations in fields of specialization that suitably qualify them to evaluate the research data related to the petition statement. Many of the signers currently work in climatological, meteorological, atmospheric, environmental, geophysical, astronomical, and biological fields directly involved in the climate change controversy.”

              The petition has never been discredited.

              • lprent

                When I read the list I don’t see those. What I see are people with marginal backgrounds in earth sciences…

                Frankly your claim is bullshit.

              • NickS

                /facepalm

                Ah, got tired of getting shown to be a complete fool over on Open Parachute did we? Too bad you’re going to get further mocked and shown how utter incompetent you are here as well.

                Funny thing is, when others have gone through the petition they find arts, economics, dentists and other etc who aren’t even close to being involved in the core science of climate change, and then there’s the joke entries + the dead people and those entered into it without their permeation. All of which is nicely documented and argued over on the relevant wikipedia page.

                i.e. enough issues have been raised with it, that trusting the petition appears such a level of stupidity, that one has to wonder how those who embrace it as truth manage to even use the internet.

                So please, burn your computer and stick to writing pointless letters to your local news-rag.

            • Poptech 2.1.1.1.1.4

              The third list has not been discredited either. It is currently over 500 papers,

              http://www.populartechnology.net/2009/10/peer-reviewed-papers-supporting.html

              All the papers on the list support skepticism of AGW or the environmental or economic effects of it.

              • lprent

                Only if you take the most extreme view of what ‘skepticism’ is.

                If you look at the reputable authors in earth sciences looking at the physical issue (as opposed to the papers by earth science illiterates), what you find is that you have almost entirely papers that disagree with an aspect of the IPCC models. In other words trying to get the models changed because they have found proof or have a theory about how the IPCC models could be improved.

                That does NOT mean that those papers disagree with the concept of anthropogenic climate change despite what the dickhead author of this list thinks.

                Now point me to 10 earth sciences papers in that list by people with an earth sciences background that do not conform to what I just described. You will be hard pushed to find 10. But I’ll review them for you to explain why you made an error, or the background of the paper.

                The ones you find will all be by the handful of actual earth scientist skeptics, most of whom will either be in the employ of skeptic company or institute, or will be past retirement age supplementing their pensions.

              • NickS

                Ah, that list, btw, any and all biology papers are off the cards as they’re generally dealing with separating out other drivers of biodiversity change from climate change, which due to ecology being messy, is a pain in teh butt sometimes. Or are looking at impacts on a given species, of separating drivers of change may be on the difficult side. And then there’s future predictions, which of course are going to have serious, critical discussion over them. Though, given all the lovely evidence about shifts in species ranges and emergence/flowering times over the last 50 years+ that’s explained by climate change, one has to wonder how you missed this…

                Also, any paper from Energy and Environment is out due to considerable issues with the journal’s peer review process, + a few other journals renowned for being utterly useless and/or non peer-reviewed. But I’m sure you can dig them up.

                Anyhow, one is mostly repeating what’s already been said over at Open Parachute…

        • Bright Red 2.1.1.2

          Any source on that? And by “scientific community” who are you including? I’m not particularly interested in the opinions of sociologists on the science, not compared to the opinions of climatologists.

        • NickS 2.1.1.3

          /facepalm

          For frak’s sake, the only opinions that matter from surveys are from the ones who are grounded in the literature, i.e. those active in climatology research/publishing, for they’re the ones with the actual training and knowledge to understand the state of the field. Much like how, the only opinions that matter on evolution when doing such surveys come from frakking evolutionary biologists, not physicists, not dentists, not BA graduates, nor information theorist’s and sure as hell not theologians.

          And when you look at surveys of climatology researchers, much like surveys of evolutionary biologists, there’s only a small percentage of scientists who don’t agree with the consensus. But this is besides the point, for such information is not that helpful, for what matters in science is evidence from the research done, and that’s pretty clear that climate change is occurring, and it’s being driven by human releases of greenhouse gases.

          Of course, just like other forms of denialism, “sceptics” like making use of blogs, discredited scientists, dodgy/refuted journal articles in non-climatology journals, opinion pieces and other resources like Wishart’s moronic book to claim there’s “debate”, when there’s not in the literature…

          /sigh

          Which makes the entire “debate” defence as giant load of steaming sh*t, since we don’t (currently, outside of Jesus/Allah-stan) see Op-Ed’s about who there’s debate over HIV causing AIDS, nor evolution, nor mainstream astronomy and the causes of autism spectrum disorders.

          And thinking a bit, this whole debate meme over climate change is very similar to the Discovery Institutes “Teach the Controversy” bullsh*t.

    • lprent 2.2

      You are completely incorrect. But then we know your science isn’t up to much so perhaps you’re merely listening to the shrillest voices.

      My first degree was in earth sciences and I’ve kept an eye on it subsequently…

      Quite simply the accumulated data is overwhelming that the anthropogenic greenhouse warming is happening. The only thing that is in contention is how soon and how severe because there are no examples in the geological record that are similar for the speed and sustained duration of the event (natural events are far more punctuated). The only real issue with scientists outside of earth sciences is that there is a hell of a lot of new data that they haven’t had time to catch up on.

      If you look inside earth sciences the level of agreement is as high as it is possible to get agreement amongst scientists (you’ll find more physicists that disagree with the quantum theories that underlay how your computer operates). Amongst the climatologists – well they can see it going on.

      If you look outside the earth sciences than you’ll find a minority that don’t want to believe the evidence. The further away their disciplines are from earth sciences the more skeptical they are. You also find that the older they are the more skeptical they are as well – but that is to be expected – they’re running on passed over theoretical models from another discipline.

      Generally when I look at the ‘skeptic scientists’, there are very few I’d accept as having much credibility in this field. Like that geographer at auckland uni who has never said anything much that I can aggree with based on evidence. Outside of science, there are just the nutters like the looney lord who looks as if he’d have problems tying his shoelaces. Then of course there are idiot journos who really couldn’t give a shit about the subject, but can get a cheap headline out of it.

      Have a look at this post. Remember that this in the US where the majority of earth science grads wind up in the mining industries that frequently have a vested interest in continuing to exploit fossil carbon.

      • TightyRighty 2.2.1

        ok, and how does that disagree with what i said here

        “a sizeable portion of the scientific community don’t think AGW to be true?”

        I acknowledge what you say that it is impossible to gain absolute consensus on such an issue. i don’t think that 18% disagreeing with the idea that it is Human induced can be written off however. i’m not quoting from the lord monckton, as i don’t think he is all there. for the same reason i write off al gore as he is just an attention whore with vested financial interest in seeing AGW proved right. nor do i care what ian wishart thinks on AGW, as he is not a scientist, like the majority of greenpeace, WWF, Keisha Castle Hughes, Lucy lawless and Rhys Darby.

        • lprent 2.2.1.1

          If you said that “a sizeable portion of the earth sciences community don’t think AGW to be true?” then it might be relevant. As it is, your statement is perfectly meaningless.

          However, what does a chemist (for instance) like Peter Johns know about earth sciences? Bugger all. If you’re lucky then in their undergraduate degree 20 years ago they did a first year course. Most ‘scientists’ have very little understanding of science areas outside their primary fields of interest.

          The same thing happens if you’re someone like a oil geologist. You don’t have time to keep up on what is happening in an area like climatology (apart from having a vested interest in ignoring it).

          Hell, a friend of mine is a working astronomer with degrees and a track record as long as your arm. His knowledge about an area that I covered 30 years ago is pitiful. He thinks of everything in terms of orbits…

          The only people that are really interesting on the physical aspects are earth scientists, and the particular sub-group of climatologists and paleo-climatologists.

          If you raise others as scientists who could have an opinion, I know you’re just bullshitting.

          • TightyRighty 2.2.1.1.1

            ok, so how about 18% of said chosen earth sciences participants disagreeing?

            • Draco T Bastard 2.2.1.1.1.1

              http://www.cnn.com/2009/WORLD/americas/01/19/eco.globalwarmingsurvey/index.html

              # Story Highlights
              # Most earth scientists believe humans cause of global warming, according to survey
              # 97 percent of climatologists canvassed believe humans play a role
              # Petroleum geologists and meteorologists were among the biggest doubters

              I think I’ll do the rational thing and go with the climatologists.

            • lprent 2.2.1.1.1.2

              Oil geologist? Geologist working for a mining company? You’d need more of a breakdown of data.

              Fact is that a *lot* of earth science graduates go and work for extraction companies especially in the US, canada, and aussie. That survey picked up them as well. Scientists are just as human as the rest of us. It is usually considered that the percentage going into extraction industries to be at least 20-30% in those countries.

              What is surprising in the sciences is that only small percentages disagreed. If you asked the question of physicists “do you think that the speed of light is the final limiting factor on speed”, I suspect that less than 50% would answer yes.

              • Draco T Bastard

                It wasn’t a great article but it did have TRs 18% in it, a breakdown showing that most of that 18% would have, at best, a limited understanding of climate and that the people who do understand climate are near unanimous about the cause – us.

  3. This phenomenon is appalling.

    I have been following the development of the science of climate change for many years, albeit as a layperson. As time goes by IMHO the science becomes more and more compelling and our poor world is actually showing the exact symptoms that were predicted.

    Yet the deniers become more and more shrill and take delight in the slightest failings of individuals around the world and hold up these failings as proof that the whole thing is a hoax.

    I read recently a comparison being drawn between the debate and the OJ Simpson trial in the US. The evidence of guilt in that case was overwhelming and all that the defence team could do was spend more and more times analysing in detail the smallest of cracks in the case. Eventually the jury became overwhelmed with the volume of evidence and harboured doubt, partially through prejudice, partly in response to the hysteria that had been whipped up.

    Unfortunately a fair proportion of our population is now behaving like the OJ Simpson jury. Just as the oil companies wanted …

  4. Bill 4

    It’s been said before, but can’t be said too often.

    By extrapolation, science is concluding that neither regulated, central nor free market capitalist economies will survive climate change. Neither will we if we hang on to them.

    But business leaders and political leaders are the people with both the greatest influence in the present and the greatest amount to lose should we discontinue to produce, distribute and consume as we do.

    And we’ve successfully conditioned ourselves to rely on these ‘great leader/saviour’ to take of things for us.

    Hell, we even support and fight their oil wars and meekly allow ourselves to be plunged into situations of long term insecurity and poverty so that they can get their money back and continue to exercise and enjoy inordinate amounts power and immense privileges.

    Our fealty even extends to joining the mob involved in the rounding up and executing of these messengers from science. People accused, death threats received, careers destroyed…it’s like a bigger, madder and badder McCarthyism.

    Wonder how long before school kids have to stand up in assemblies to loudly denounce scientific enquiry and swear allegiance to mumbo jumbo and mysticism?

    • pollywog 4.1

      “Wonder how long before school kids have to stand up in assemblies and swear allegiance to mumbo jumbo and mysticism?’

      Maori schools are built on that very principle…oops

      *grab’s coat and hides under it*

      To be fair, its all about defining terms of reference and sadly the terms for polynesian mysticism were lost in translation.

      But I’m still holding out for the Einstein of this century to reveal himself and his free energy inspiring theories, leading to open source devices that will eliminate the energy barons control of mankind.

      The hope is to evolve and handle the responsibility that comes with free unlimited power because the ‘aliens’ wont reveal themselves again til we do 🙂

  5. tc 5

    Nice analogy MS and your point about ‘slightest failings’ is pertinent as the science attempts to predict/based on evidence/reworks the models….it’s an iterative process that’s seeing more and more fringe scientists become convinced as the detailed data in now enetering it’s third decade.

    Gwyn Dyers Climate Wars is essential reading IMHO he outlines US gov’t action plans setup awhile back which anticipate the massive shift in populations as food becomes scarce and people go in search of it…..so here’s a gov’t who is planning for what it’s own scientists are predicting.

    It’s that old marketing ploy of chuck someone in a labcoat and they’ll be believed, so my authoritative bloke in a labcoat denies GWC, your scruffy professor is pro GWC…..style over substance yet again with a complaint msm enforcing the gov’t line.

    Science requires intelligence and rarely delivers certainties as there’s always a margin of error and in this 10sec soundbite, small attention span, game console world it’s losing rather badly without intelligent media to assist it.

  6. freedom 6

    guys and gals, when the solar radiation storms from massive sunspot activity begin to attack Earth’s atmosphere in 18 months your ‘climate change’ arguments will mean nothing. just concentrate on food, water and power for your families’ survival.

    no i am not on medication, and yes i already own a ‘the end is nigh’ sign

  7. Argue all you like but does anyone believe that voluntary reductions and cap and trade schemes are the answer ?… NO ?

    …then i guess we’ll just have to go full on into hoping a scientific/technological breakthrough will solve the clean energy crisis and that won’t happen unless a next level genius figures out how to get E from MC squared without using it to boil water and drive turbines or mindlessly blow shit up.

    Somewhere out there are some technologically advanced aliens looking at us on earth like it’s some bad reality show and pissing themselves laughing…frankly, i’m embarrassed

  8. PK 8

    ***Maybe, just maybe, the fact that our major newspapers print anti-science climate change denialist propaganda nearly every day has something to do with the public’s perceptions of science.***

    I thought the mainstream media generally accepted the ‘consensus’?

    “Journalists are wont to moan that the slow death of newspapers will mean a disastrous loss of investigative reporting. The web is all very well, they say, but who will pay for the tenacious sniffing newshounds to flush out the real story? ‘Climategate’ proves the opposite to be true. It was amateur bloggers who scented the exaggerations, distortions and corruptions in the climate establishment; whereas newspaper reporters, even after the scandal broke, played poodle to their sources…

    Of course, reporters have been going native for decades. The difference is that they cannot now get away with it. When acid rain was all the rage in the 1980s, I was a science editor and I relayed all sorts of cataclysmic predictions from scientists and greens about its effect on forests. (Stern magazine said in 1984 that a third of Germany’s forests were already dead or dying and that experts believed all — all! — its conifers would be gone by 1990.) Today, we know that these predictions were wildly wrong and that far from dying out, forests in Germany, Sweden and North America actually thrived during that decade. I should have been more sceptical.

    Yet, this time round, despite 20 years of being told they were not just factually but morally wrong, of being compared to Holocaust deniers, of being told they deserved to be tried for crimes against humanity, of being avoided at parties, climate sceptics seem to be growing in number and confidence by the day. What is the difference?

    In a word, the internet. The Climate Consensus may hold the establishment — the universities, the media, big business, government — but it is losing the jungles of the web. After all, getting research grants, doing pieces to cameras and advising boards takes time. The very ostracism the sceptics suffered has left them free to do their digging untroubled by grant applications and invitations to Stockholm. The main blog used by the Consensus, realclimate.org, exemplifies this problem, because it was set up by a PR company and is run by an employee of Nasa, who ties himself in knots trying to show that he does the blog in his spare time. It is also characterised by a tone of weary condescension and censoring of dissent that you do not find on most sceptic sites.”

    http://www.spectator.co.uk/essays/all/5749853/the-global-warming-guerrillas.thtml

    • lprent 8.1

      Yeah, I was a climate change skeptic, 30 years ago, when the theory was pretty unproven. If I’d gone on to do the PhD and start working in the field, I’d have been doing my damnedest to chop holes in it. After all that is how you get a reputation, especially if you can chop holes in scientific media whores ideas. I’d have probably wound up on one of wattsup’s lists as a skeptic…..

      The difference is that this area has kept accumulating evidence. Some of it has disproved the earlier predictions. Some has shown that people weren’t thinking wide enough on their predictions. The overall effect is that the bulk of earth scientists now consider that the ideas from decades ago were far too conservative about probable effects.

      The problem is that the media really have no idea how to handle decade long efforts by many people to disprove a theory. There is no easy meme, so they usually drop into personalities..

  9. I think newspapers/govt do a lot to seed scientific ignorance, but the implication that it is a right-wing problem I think are over-simplistic. The ability of Hide et. al. to completely disregard the evidence on climate change is an embarrassment, but you could say the same for the “left” in some countries on the topics of nuclear power, whaling, genetic engineering, alternative therapies and many others. Broadening the survey to include statistical analysis and the topics of the gender wage gap, the effect of the minimum wage on unemployment, and the effect of poverty on crime rates also come to mind.

    Newspapers, governments and activists all do their bit to see scientific and statistical ignorance, and they all have a knack for ignoring evidence when it doesn’t work in their favour. But it’s not a problem confined to any one corner of the political spectrum.

  10. Anne 10

    As a former Meteorological Service employee, Climate Change first came to our full attention in the 1970s. It was known as the Greenhouse Gas Effect in those days and the main cause was considered to be massive deforestation of the planet which had gone on for centuries. It was during the 1980s that the other human components began to emerge and that is when the trouble started. Margaret Thatcher should be given full credit for bringing the matter to the attention of world leaders at that time. I guess her background in the sciences was a factor in her recognition of the problem.

    I still don’t understand why so many people are in denial over climate change. It’s as though they fear their entire belief system will be turned on it’s head if they acknowledge it. I regard them as the modern day equivalents of the flat earthers of a few centuries ago who charged the scientists of the day with heresy for daring to proclaim that the Earth was round… Every time they looked up to the night sky and saw the full moon you would think something might have clicked, but apparently it didn’t. We have exactly the same problem with CC Deniers today but this time the future of life as we know it hangs in the balance!

  11. Anne 11

    Further to my comment…

    It is something of an irony that Rodney Hide et al should be such vocifereous opponents when one of their political heroes, Maggie Thatcher, was such a strong proponent of Global Warming.

    • Bill 11.1

      No. There is no irony ( Thatcher aside…unsure abut where you get the ‘climatically aware’ Thatcher line from, not that it matters much).

      Flat earthers stood to lose a view of the world that had zero impact on their day to day lives one way or another.

      Climate change denialists stand to lose everything. As do we all. But, thumbs up liberals contend that as long as we change light bulbs and take part in earth hour and switch off stand by functions and drive a wee bit less then we will be A okay!

      Where is the fundamental difference? Seems to me that the denial is simply one of degrees.

      edit the link above sets out some reasons. Ideology. The state should NEVER interfere or intervene..that’s a motive for denial, or at least being obstructive.

  12. Anne 12

    @ Bill
    I can’t recall the precise time, but Margaret Thatcher was prominent in expressing her concerns in the 1980s. I recall at least one TV interview and a speech to an international forum. She had a back-ground in medical science (I think it was) before becoming a politician. I was never a supporter of Thatcher, but I do give her credit for helping to bring international attention to global warming.

    “Flat earthers stood to have a view of the world which had zero impact… Climate change denialists stand to lose everything”. Yes, I touched on that in my last sentence.

    Btw thanks for the link. I’ll listen to Naomi Oreskes tomorrow.

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    2 days ago
  • Speech to Wakatū Nelson regional hui on trade
    First, I want to express my thanks to Te Taumata for this hui and for all the fantastic work you are doing for Māori in the trade space. In the short time that you’ve been operating you’ve already contributed an enormous amount to the conversation, and developed impressive networks.  I ...
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    2 days ago
  • Speech to Primary Industries Summit
    Thank you for the opportunity to speak to you today about the significant contribution the food and fibres sector makes to New Zealand and how this Government is supporting that effort. I’d like to start by acknowledging our co-Chairs, Terry Copeland and Mavis Mullins, my colleague, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor, ...
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    2 days ago
  • Fast track referrals will speed up recovery and boost jobs and home building
    The Government is taking action to increase jobs, speed up the economic recovery and build houses by putting three more projects through its fast track approval process. “It’s great to see that the fast-track consenting process is working. Today we have referred a mix of potential projects that, if approved, ...
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    3 days ago
  • Papakāinga provides critically needed homes in Hastings
    A papakāinga opened today by the Minister for Māori Development the Hon Willie Jackson will provide whānau with much needed affordable rental homes in Hastings. The four home papakāinga in Waiōhiki is the first project to be completed under the ‘Hastings Place Based’ initiative. This initiative is a Government, Hastings ...
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    5 days ago
  • New Zealand ready to host APEC virtually
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern took over the leadership of APEC earlier today, when she joined leaders from the 21 APEC economies virtually for the forum’s final 2020 meeting. “We look forward to hosting a fully virtual APEC 2021 next year. While this isn’t an in-person meeting, it will be one ...
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    5 days ago
  • Revival of Māori Horticulturists
    The rapid revival of Māori horticulture was unmistakeable at this year’s Ahuwhenua Trophy Awards, with 2020 marking the first time this iconic Māori farming event was dedicated to horticulture enterprises. Congratulating finalists at the Awards, Māori Development Minister Willie Jackson said growing large-scale māra kai is part of Māori DNA. ...
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    6 days ago
  • Emergency benefit to help temporary visa holders
    From 1 December, people on temporary work, student or visitor visas who can’t return home and or support themselves may get an Emergency Benefit from the Ministry of Social Development, Social Development and Employment Minister Carmel Sepuloni announced today. Previously, temporary visa holders in hardship because of COVID-19 have had ...
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    6 days ago
  • School sustainability projects to help boost regional economies
    Forty one schools from the Far North to Southland will receive funding for projects that will reduce schools’ emissions and save them money, Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. This is the second round of the Sustainability Contestable Fund, and work will begin immediately. The first round announced in April ...
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    6 days ago
  • Farmer-led projects to improve water health in Canterbury and Otago
    More than $6 million will be spent on helping farmers improve the health of rivers, wetlands, and habitat biodiversity in Canterbury and Otago, as well as improving long-term land management practices, says Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor. Four farmer-led catchment group Jobs for Nature projects have between allocated between $176,000 and ...
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    6 days ago
  • Tupu Aotearoa continues expansion to Pacific communities in Nelson, Marlborough, Tasman & Northl...
    Pacific communities in Nelson, Marlborough, Tasman and Northland will benefit from the expansion of the Tupu Aotearoa programme announced today by the Minister for Pacific Peoples, Aupito William Sio. The programme provides sustainable employment and education pathways and will be delivered in partnership with three providers in Northland and two ...
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    6 days ago
  • New primary school and classrooms for 1,200 students in South Island
    Education Minister Chris Hipkins unveiled major school building projects across the South Island during a visit to Waimea College in Nelson today. It’s part of the Government’s latest investment of $164 million to build new classrooms and upgrade schools around the country. “Investments like this gives the construction industry certainty ...
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    6 days ago
  • Minister of Māori Development pays tribute to Rudy Taylor
      Today the Minister of Māori Development, alongside other Government Ministers and MP’s said their final farewells to Nga Puhi Leader Rudy Taylor.  “Rudy dedicated his life to the betterment of Māori, and his strong approach was always from the ground up, grassroots, sincere and unfaltering”  “Over the past few ...
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    6 days ago
  • Prime Minister to attend APEC Leaders’ Summit
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern will attend the annual APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting and associated events virtually today and tomorrow. “In a world where we cannot travel due to COVID-19, continuing close collaboration with our regional partners is key to accelerating New Zealand’s economic recovery,” Jacinda Ardern said. “There is wide ...
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    6 days ago
  • Speech to Infrastructure NZ Symposium
    Tena Koutou, Tena Koutou and thank you for inviting me to speak to you today. This is a critical time for New Zealand as we respond to the damage wreaked by the global COVID-19 pandemic. It is vital that investment in our economic recovery is well thought through, and makes ...
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    7 days ago
  • Pike River 10 Year Anniversary Commemorative Service
    Tēnei te mihi ki a tātau katoa e huihui nei i tēnei rā Ki a koutou ngā whānau o te hunga kua riro i kōnei – he mihi aroha ki a koutou Ki te hapori whānui – tēnā koutou Ki ngā tāngata whenua – tēnā koutou Ki ngā mate, e ...
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    7 days ago
  • Huge investment in new and upgraded classrooms to boost construction jobs
    Around 7,500 students are set to benefit from the Government’s latest investment of $164 million to build new classrooms and upgrade schools around the country. “The election delivered a clear mandate to accelerate our economic recovery and build back better. That’s why we are prioritising construction projects in schools so more ...
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    7 days ago
  • Keeping Pike River Mine promises 10 years on
    Ten years after the Pike River Mine tragedy in which 29 men lost their lives while at work, a commemorative service at Parliament has honoured them and their legacy of ensuring all New Zealand workplaces are safe. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern attended the event, along with representatives of the Pike ...
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    7 days ago
  • Additional testing to strengthen border and increase safety of workers
    New testing measures are being put in place to increase the safety of border workers and further strengthen New Zealand’s barriers against COVID-19, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “These strengthened rules – to apply to all international airports and ports – build on the mandatory testing orders we’ve ...
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    7 days ago
  • More public housing delivered in Auckland
    The Government’s investment in public housing is delivering more warm, dry homes with today’s official opening of 82 new apartments in New Lynn by the Housing Minister Megan Woods. The Thom Street development replaces 16 houses built in the 1940s, with brand new fit-for-purpose public housing that is in high ...
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    1 week ago
  • Agreement advanced to purchase up to 5 million COVID-19 vaccines
    The Government has confirmed an in-principle agreement to purchase up to 5 million COVID-19 vaccines – enough for 5 million people – from Janssen Pharmaceutica, subject to the vaccine successfully completing clinical trials and passing regulatory approvals in New Zealand, says Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods. “This agreement ...
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    1 week ago
  • Jobs for Nature funding will leave a conservation legacy for Waikanae awa
    Ninety-two jobs will be created to help environmental restoration in the Waikanae River catchment through $8.5 million of Jobs for Nature funding, Conservation Minister Kiritapu Allan announced today. “The new funding will give a four-year boost to the restoration of the Waikanae awa, and is specifically focussed on restoration through ...
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    1 week ago
  • New Dunedin Hospital project progresses to next stage
    As the new Dunedin Hospital project progresses, the Government is changing the oversight group to provide more technical input, ensure continued local representation, and to make sure lessons learnt from Dunedin benefit other health infrastructure projects around the country. Concept design approval and the release of a tender for early ...
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    1 week ago
  • Jump in apprentice and trainee numbers
    The number of New Zealanders taking up apprenticeships has increased nearly 50 percent, and the number of female apprentices has more than doubled. This comes as a Government campaign to raise the profile of vocational education and training (VET) begins. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced ...
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    1 week ago
  • ReBuilding Nations Symposium 2020 (Infrastructure NZ Conference opening session)
    Tena koutou katoa and thank you for the opportunity to be with you today. Can I acknowledge Ngarimu Blair, Ngati Whatua, and Mayor Phil Goff for the welcome. Before I start with my substantive comments, I do want to acknowledge the hard work it has taken by everyone to ensure ...
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    1 week ago
  • New Zealand's biosecurity champions honoured
    Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor has paid tribute to the winners of the 2020 New Zealand Biosecurity Awards. “These are the people and organisations who go above and beyond to protect Aotearoa from pests and disease to ensure our unique way of life is sustained for future generations,” Damien O’Connor says. ...
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    1 week ago
  • Tourism Industry Aotearoa Conference
    speech to Tourism Industry Aotearoa annual summit Te Papa,  Wellington Introduction Nau mai, haere mai Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, Ka nui te mihi, ki a koutou. Thank you Tourism Industry Aotearoa for hosting today’s Summit. In particular, my acknowledgements to TIA Chair Gráinne Troute and Chief Executive Chris Roberts. You ...
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    1 week ago
  • Supermarkets announced as Government’s second market study
    The Government has today launched a market study to ensure New Zealanders are paying a fair price for groceries.   “Supermarkets are an integral part of our communities and economy, so it’s important to ensure that Kiwis are getting a fair deal at the checkout,” Minister of Commerce and Consumer ...
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    1 week ago
  • Masks to be worn on Auckland public transport and all domestic flights
    Masks will need to be worn on all public transport in Auckland and in and out of Auckland and on domestic flights throughout the country from this Thursday, Minister for COVID-19 Response Chris Hipkins said today. “I will be issuing an Order under the COVID-19 Response Act requiring the wearing ...
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    1 week ago
  • New Zealand signs Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership
    Increase to New Zealand’s GDP by around $2 billion each year Increase opportunities for NZ exporters to access regional markets Cuts red tape and offers one set of trade rules across the Asia Pacific region New government procurement, competition policy and electronic commerce offers NZ exporters increased business opportunities Prime ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Minister acknowledges students as exams begin
    Education Minister Chris Hipkins has recognised the extraordinary challenges students have faced this year, ahead of NCEA and New Zealand Scholarship exams which begin on Monday. “I want to congratulate students for their hard work during a year of unprecedented disruption, and I wish students all the best as ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Prime Minister meets with key ASEAN and East Asia Summit partners
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern today attended the ASEAN-New Zealand Commemorative Summit and discussed with Leaders a range of shared challenges facing the Indo-Pacific region, including: The ongoing management of the COVID-19 pandemic; The importance of working collectively to accelerate economic recovery; and Exploring further opportunities for partners to work more ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Veterans Affairs Summit held in Korea
    A Ministerial Summit on Veterans’ Affairs was held in the Republic of Korea this week. Ministers with veteran responsibilities were invited from all 22 countries that had been part of the United Nations Forces during the Korean War (1950 – 1953). The Summit marked the 70th anniversary of the outbreak ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Clear direction set for the education system, skills prioritised
    The Government has released a set of priorities for early learning through to tertiary education and lifelong learning to build a stronger, fairer education system that delivers for all New Zealanders. “The election delivered a clear mandate from New Zealanders to accelerate our plan to reduce inequalities and make more ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • A Progressive Agenda
    Speech to the Climate Change + Business Conference, November 12, 2020 Tena koutou katoa Thank you for inviting me to speak here today. It is great to see us all come together for a common cause: to redefine our future in the face of unprecedented times.  Covid-19 and climate change are ...
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    2 weeks ago