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Thank you Charlie.

Written By: - Date published: 10:56 pm, April 24th, 2017 - 60 comments
Categories: class war, climate change, energy, Environment, global warming, science, vision - Tags:

One of the speakers at Dunedin’s March for Science was a young woman by the name of Charlie. She was introduced as a part of 350.org, and I admit my heart sank a tad as I prepared to be accosted by the ‘same old’ pollyannaish spiel about how we’re moving in the right direction and how everything will be just fine.

How wrong I was.

Charlie (I spoke briefly with her and a friend afterwards) knows that any talk of  transitioning to a low or zero carbon future is ‘off the table’. She knows that all the renewable resources being developed are far too little and far too late, and anyway, are being deployed on top of existing fossil sources of energy – not replacing them.

She gets that investing hope in impossible or improbable  technologies (BECCS) in impossible timeframes (less than 20 years) that sets a world of logistics off to one side, is just plain stupid and disempowering.

She’s cognisant of the fact that this isn’t ‘the Anthropocene’ as many like to claim – that it’s a small percentage of humanity that is responsible for global warming and not the entire human race fulfilling some kind of dark manifest destiny.

In a nutshell, Charlie, and I dare to hope a good number of other young people, fully understand that incrementalism – that which essentially amounts to running down the train tracks to avoid the locomotive of global warming, isn’t the direction to go in and is no kind of strategy at all.

Charlie’s aware we need a clean break – a radical and immediate departure. She looks to her possible futures and sees that only revolutionary ones contain prospects.

I owe Charlie and her peers that possibility.

And all of us who are currently closing our eyes, or grasping for a rationale that will justify us hanging on to what we’ve got; that will excuse us approaching the future in a linear fashion whereby tomorrow might be perceived as flowing in a seamless or recognisable progression from yesterday – we owe them that possibility too.

Charlie pointed me to the following observation made by Tim DeChristopher – “If we want to change the status quo, we might have to work outside of some of those rules because the legal pathways available to us have been structured precisely so we don’t make change.”

Indeed. So I’ll be searching out Charlie and her friends again and lending the knowledge and experience this old bugger has accrued from past years of organising, and from times living a less than orthodox life, and putting it all at their disposal to use or discard as they see fit.

It’s the least I can do.

And thank you again Charlie for those few minutes of fresh air, for expressing that rare thing –  a flourish of hope that’s firmly rooted in reality.

Last word to Charlie.

 “I believe there is nothing more radical than burning more coal, oil and gas despite the urgent call for drastic climate action by frontline communities. There’s nothing scarier than the future of our planet, which our lives depend upon, being decided by a few powerful people.

The power to change the world right now is not democratic, but belongs to a few people. We can change that now.”

60 comments on “Thank you Charlie. ”

  1. Gosman 1

    How much of your experience has been of successful efforts to change the system rather than merely to fight rear guard actions to attempt to starve off what you perceive as the worst effects?

  2. Perhaps if you had listened to those of us who said your rigid view of what these organisations are and who are in them was incorrect or at least skewered by your own life experience and attitude then it wouldn’t have been such a surprise or revelation.

    How do you reconcile the individual acts and responses of an individual with these types of organisations now (who I assume you think are still doing next to nothing and all down the wrong pathway anyway) ?

    • Bill 2.1

      It’s the very first time I have heard any public speaker speak from the basis of hard science and reality marty. I absolutely stand by every criticism I have made of various organisations and individuals who have, and do, peddle false hope.

  3. Red 3

    Bill your problem is your medicine is worst than the cure The science on climate change no one denies, Including human impact, what is not irrefutable is the degree of human impact, the degree of change (you assume nothing will change re carbon out put etc) and what we can do about it, You seem to think and are only open to radical revolution is the answer by destroying the system which will do more harm than good, hence why you lack any purchase in your views, not to mention good old fashion fire and brimstone doomsday prophesies really does not do it these day.People need hope to work with, with out it you have nothing, this is the level you should work on, and yes be less grumpy and old

    • Bill 3.1

      If we’d begun to enact market based policies to reduce carbon emissions back in the early 90s, then they just might have been effective enough. But we didn’t.

      Today, yearly carbon emissions are about 60% above what they were back in the early 90s and no tax or carbon price mechanism (the studies have been done) will affect carbon levels to anything like the degree required in the time that we have left to us.

      So the choice is to ignore the science and pretend we can preserve some form of business as usual and so guarantee temperature increases in excess of 2 degrees, or on the other hand, get real.

      I prefer the latter.

    • weka 3.2

      “The science on climate change no one denies,”

      Actually huge numbers deny it, which is the point. I disagree with Bill’s position on incrementalism, not because incrementalism is right/will save the day, but because it’s one of the pathways to the societal tipping point we desperately need. But there are people who know how serious the situation is and won’t respond with direct action, and there are people who still think electric cars are going to save the day. That’s denial on both counts. Then there are the people who know how bad things are and don’t care or have given up. That’s a different thing.

      I agree with you that people need hope to work with though.

  4. ianmac 4

    Perhaps Charlie is making a call to arms. But the status quo has a mighty machine to dampen/crush the revolution in the name of National Security. Five Eyes is part of the machine. Comfort with the status quo calls for tomorrow sometime, not today.
    So where to from here?

    • garibaldi 4.1

      Where to from here? Just ask Red – he seems to think ‘she’ll be right mate’.

    • Anne 4.2

      Charlie IS making a call to arms.
      As a former Met. Service employee, we were talking about “global warming” – and the deleterious effect it was going to have on the planet – back in the 1970s. But nobody listened, and that allowed the national and international power blocs to consolidate and present a united front against even acknowledging C.C. existed. Their motivation was (and still is) based purely on maintaining power at all costs.

      Add to that the human race has allowed despots, narcissists and psychopaths to gain political or economical control of so many countries and entities… and it is not in their DNA to show any consideration, empathy towards their fellow countrymen/women or indeed ‘nature’ as a whole.

      It can only be overcome by political means in the first instance, but as ianmac says… how do you do it? We’ve been trying for decades and they still won’t listen. It is as much a form of defence mechanism now because they can’t admit to being wrong, and so grossly irresponsible.

      • Bill 4.2.1

        but as ianmac says… how do you do it?

        I’m going to go with Charlie’s last sentence and suggest that embracing and developing democratic bases of power is the way to go…in other words, bring the power back to where it rightfully belongs.

        That’s not a quick fix and we don’t have time on our side, so we’d do well to start on it today.

        Talk to your family, friends, acquaintances, work mates…see what you can come up with. It might only be something very small to begin with, but small things can spread and small things can grow – sometimes quite fast too 😉

        • Anne 4.2.1.1

          Trouble is they don’t want to know Bill. They’re sick of me blathering on about it.

          To be fair, they know how serious it is but they want our “leaders” to bite the bullet on their behalf, so they go out and vote for narcissists, despots and psychopaths. You can’t win! 🙁

          • Bill 4.2.1.1.1

            Then find “the Charlie” who lives near you. If you’re in Dunedin, that’s easy enough done.

            Maybe there are quite extensive networks of young people who actually do ‘get it’ (so, you know, who’re not buying into any of the ‘magical thinking’ that pervades so much of the discussion around global warming), but whose voices just aren’t being heard; whose fears aren’t being heeded. And maybe they ‘just’ need us oldies to tear down the wall society’s built between our generations, and for us to listen to them and then for us to get on board with them.

            • garibaldi 4.2.1.1.1.1

              Imo the elephant in the room is that if you acknowledge the seriousness of CC then you have to admit Capitalism has to end , and this is a bridge too far for your average Western human.

              • BM

                Not just capitalism but democracy as well.

                • weka

                  why would democracy have to end? Both Bill and Charlie are talking about increasing democracy.

                  • BM

                    How do you stop political parties reverting the country back to the “bad old ways”?

                    Take, for example, You could have a pro-climate change coalition squeak in at election time, once they’re then they go about trying to dismantle capitalism, impose all sorts of controls etc, etc.

                    The other part of the population really aren’t going to be that enthused and the rival political parties will no doubt try and tap into that anger and state that they’ll reverse these draconian measures and get the country back on track if elected.

                    This will be highly likely as there will be no doubt quite a period of upheaval and pain for the voters of both camps, which will result in the pro-climate change coalition getting the heave-ho and that will be the end of that for a generation at least.

                    Therefore for any sort of successful transition to occur democracy needs to be given the boot.

                    • keepcalmcarryon

                      For everyone who has Netflix, watch the Norwegian series “Occupied” which (so far fictionally) deals with some of the political realities of sudden change.
                      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Okkupert

                      Definately there is a corporate power imbalance in the world at the moment but the main reason nothing much will be done is due to human nature and our inability and unwillingness as a species to think beyond the immediate future or even comprehend our own individual mortality and think beyond ourselves for future generations. Some people can – like Charlie by the sound of it. But most will not.

                      Think Easter Island http://scribol.com/anthropology-and-history/archaelogy/how-deforestation-caused-easter-islands-society-to-collapse/ ,think dodo, moa extinction, it is the human way.
                      That doesnt mean i think we should do nothing, its just that we wont.
                      I suggest its an evolutionary coping mechanism – for our mortal species to be able to exploit and survive an environment. Propogation of the species, who knew we would run out of environment? Further more, we are a tribal animal and the needs of my tribe always outway the needs of yours.
                      We are not as enlightened as we think we are, as a species, despite some brilliant shining exceptions.

                      The (eco)system will collapse before our behaviour changes.
                      Ditto local and world fish stocks and capitalism itself by the way,
                      My worry is things will get very very bad before we get real structural change.

                    • weka

                      Take, for example, You could have a pro-climate change coalition squeak in at election time, once they’re then they go about trying to dismantle capitalism, impose all sorts of controls etc, etc.

                      That would be a daft strategy and anti-democratic. More the kind of thing that’s likely to happen under National during times of big upheaval, they’re the anti-democracy party after all.

                      I have no idea how capitalism could be replaced but I would think that progressive parties would work with the people, not go all authoritarian and fascist.

                      You also seem to think that the end of capitalism would have to be initiated by political parties. I keep saying this, political parties follow the change that is happening in society. That’s why there were people in the 1970s talking about climate change and it’s taken until the 2000s for the mainstream parties to get on board (or not, in the case of National).

                      Did you read the post? Did you understand what it was saying?

                    • Gosman

                      Why would ypu think progressive parties would work with the people? They haven’t in the past.

                    • Bill

                      Why do you think the only possible way to get to the future is on your knees?

                • garibaldi

                  On reflection I must say I agree with BM about having to lose democracy to carry out what is necessary to slow CC down. The practice of one person/one vote would not let it happen because more people vote for ‘what’s in it for me’ than for altruistic reasons.
                  So ,yes it would pretty much have to be totalinarianism worldwide if we want to get results. Fat chance eh?

                  • Bill

                    Parliamentary representation is really just an empty democratic shell – all form and no substance.

                    Stick with that as a bar for what passes as being democratic, and sure, it slips into (a deeper) authoritarianism very easily.

                    But hold democracy to be people having a meaningful say over things that affect them, and we begin to move in a completely different direction – away from parliamentary representation and the threat of totalitarianism and towards democratic processes and procedures that are embedded within communities – and that are constantly refined and honed by the communities that are utilising them.

                    For a present day example of what that might look like or of how it could look and work, do a quick google on Rojava and their organisational structures.

                  • Carolyn_nth

                    That’s a very narrow view of democracy, but one reinforced regularly by our mainstream media. It is grounded in the individualistic culture of our capitalist system.

                    It’s a narrow version of democracy because it focuses on representative elections.

                    A deeper and more democratic system would involve much more debate among people at the grass roots in the community. Such on-going political debates would focus people much more on the measures that would benefit society as a whole.

                    We need better political education, and more participation in discussions by the general population. That would be closer to real democracy, or participatory democracy.

                    Our current version of democracy is a bit of a sham.

                    Edit: kind of a snap, Bill.

              • Anne

                Precisely garibaldi. And people can’t bring themselves to accept their style of life has got to change and so the myth that all is well will continue until something really terrible happens. Then they might move into survival mode… by which time it will be too late.

                Capitalism as it is implemented in today’s world has got to dramatically change.

                • weka

                  one of the things we can do is talk about life beyond capitalism and how that might be a good thing. People are more likely to change if they can see something good about it.

                  • Anne

                    Yes. Perhaps we should stop using the ‘ism’ words altogether because it seems to frighten a lot of people one way or the other. Common sense politics can’t be squeezed into a particular doctrine. It is more often than not a response to a given set of circumstances and those circumstances are constantly changing.

                    It always comes back to the same thing though. Educate people properly and give them a decent standard of living, and they will make better choices in their lives. I use the word “choice” in it’s normal setting and not part of a neo-liberal political doctrine.

                    • weka

                      It always comes back to the same thing though. Educate people properly and give them a decent standard of living, and they will make better choices in their lives. I use the word “choice” in it’s normal setting and not part of a neo-liberal political doctrine.

                      I like this. Tricky when the govt of the day is actively working against that. In this sense I think Charlie is right, we need to step up the action.

            • weka 4.2.1.1.1.2

              +1 If people are sick of the blathering then find a different way to talk. And focus on the people who are ready to change. They’re the ones who are more likely to step up. There are those people around, lots of them just don’t know what to do.

              In terms of the post, I think using opportunities to combat the ‘electric cars will save us’ meme is critical. I take a different approach then Bill, because I think Generation Zero etc need to be brought over to the dark side 😉 It’s easier for me to work with middle class communities than working class ones and I see huge potential once the middle class movers and shakers get on board and be wiling to give shit up. But we need this to happen on multiple fronts. The underclasses in particular have serious level skills on how to work with difficult situations. Working together seems the sticking point.

            • lprent 4.2.1.1.1.3

              I have been hacking my lungs out with a cough since the start of Easter. Plus pulling a few allnighters at work to get a project out of the door. It hasn’t been conducive to doing mundane things like the blacklist or shopping 🙂

              Lyn has been complaining.

  5. timeforacupoftea 5

    I can claim that the climate in Dunedin has dramatically changed since the 1950’s till now as I have lived through it, we live in a much milder climate now compared to the 1950’s.

    “BM …
    25 April 2017 at 10:56 am
    Not just capitalism but democracy as well.”

    Geeeees when I read BM … comment that –
    “Not just capitalism but democracy as well”.
    – MUST END, I was thinking of poor Charlie she will be a candidate for suicide or a future burden to New Zealand’s mental health waiting list.

    Lets hope she dose not read TheStandard.org.nz as some previous comments are depressing.

  6. Skeptic 6

    I see Wikipedia have defined “climate change denial” as pseudoscience – which I think most, if not all who read this site, would agree. I also see that recent polls on this subject have seen about 85% of ordinary people accepting the reality of climate change (of a cyclic nature) and global warming (by human intervention), with the balance being made up of deniers and don’t knows. These figures seem to hold for most western democracies give or take for local flavour and are pretty much the same +/- 15% for most other countries, with those directly affected already being more than those less affected or in a controlled political atmosphere.

    Given that we now know that 6 degrees change in average mean temperature will mean irreversible weather pattern change, along with sea level rise, increased severity of extreme weather, changed temperate and crop growing zones, increased insect and tropical disease zones, hugely increased insurance and infrastructure replacement costs, massively increased medical and agricultural research expenses and very expensive habitat relocation costs, and that the current exponential growth rate of that change will see this 6 degrees arrive in the early 2040s, while the current curbs on emissions won’t take effect till the 2050s, I think Charlie is speaking for her generation when she talks about “drastic action”. After all, it is her generation, and her immediate descendants who will pick up the costs of our failings. And those costs will be in the tenfold, hundredfold and thousandfold for each succeeding generation.

    As an aged activist from the time of my mis-spent youth, I applaud her intentions, although given the ground level passive support, I think that her ideas of “a few” are somewhat pessimistic. What is very much lacking is leadership in the provision of credible practical alternatives to everyday wastefulness and extravagance so prevalent in our consumer society. As a realist, I think that most people would, if given such practical and meaningful alternatives, willingly adopt them. How to change this overwhelming passive support to active demands for attitudinal change from our political leaders and business/industrial CEOs is a question where coalition building similar to the CND campaign of the 1980s is needed. A broad-based, across sector, mainstream groundswell call for change is, I think the only way the necessary impetus for change will be effective in time before the worst of the 6 degrees patterns impact.

    If we don’t, we may well be the last generation to enjoy a “blessed earth” instead of a “vengeful Gaia”.

  7. Ad 7

    I don’t think “climate deniers” are the main obstacle.

    I think the opposition to change is vast. Anthony Giddens as far back as 2002 did a whole book on The Politics of Climate Change. It laid a few of the structural resistances out.

    I sure think there’s a point to protest, and hearing fresh leaders say fresh things. But …

    … But the opposition to climate change activism are too often seen as fact-deniers that are so off the wall that they are psychopathic. I don’t believe they are, generally. I think they like the way things are.

    (After all, Goodies have a philosophy, Baddies have a psychology).

    The prescription for understand why the climate activists aren’t winning is to do the Ideological Turing Test. It was invented by Bryan Caplan the economist of George Mason University.

    It’s simple enough:
    If you truly understand your political adversary, then you should be able to write an essay explicating their point of view so well that a neutral judge cannot tell the difference.

    How many of us, do you think, could pass it?

    • Bill 7.1

      I’m not seeing the point Ad. Let’s assume I’d pass that Ideological Turing Test…or not. So what?

      There’s a myriad of systemic and cultural barriers standing between understanding and action. So I might well understand those who want to hang on to (say) our current economic and political paradigms down to the nth degree. And no reasoned argument I put to them – even on their own terms – would shift them, because belief is based on faith, not rationality.

      The task is to find and encourage the doubters. They are the ones open to suggestion.

      Or maybe, juts possibly, to get the true believers with something coming from waaaay left field 😉

      • Ad 7.1.1

        The task is to defeat those opposed to sufficient action on climate change.
        The side of the good is not winning, as you regularly remind us.
        So there needs to be a deeper understanding of why the opposition is winning.
        In order to do better at defeating them.

        • Bill 7.1.1.1

          The side of the good is not winning, as you regularly remind us.

          Critical, or even sometimes brutally honest evaluation of an analysis or goal is not the same as ‘reminding’ anyone about supposed winning or losing. I don’t think I’ve ever commented within any ‘winning/losing’ frame of reference when talking about global warming – I’d be surprised if you could dig up an instance of me doing that.

          What I have done, and will continue to do, is call bullshit on magical thinking and false hope, whether that’s being peddled by governments, political parties, NGOs, scientists, policy makers or individuals.

          For me, it’s about change – not winning.

          • BM 7.1.1.1.1

            How do you make it all happen, Bill?

            What’s the plan going forward? how does NZ go from where we are now to a carbon neutral society? assuming that’s the end goal?

            • Bill 7.1.1.1.1.1

              How do I make it all happen!?

              What, you think I’m God or something BM?

              I know you’ve no interest – but a good start would be to heed the basic science and act on the basis of the information we get from that science, without resorting to any ‘magical thinking’ and without skewing any scientific data so that possible actions and policies fit nicely within, and preserve, an economic orthodoxy that’s currently sending us ‘to hell’ at a rate of 2ppm per year.

              In practical terms that requires (besides land use changes) reducing our energy related emissions at a rate of something like 15% per year, year on year. A hard sinking cap would do it.

              • BM

                In practical terms that requires (besides land use changes) reducing our energy related emissions at a rate of something like 15% per year, year on year. A hard sinking cap would do it.

                How do you make that happen? what sort of plan is required to get that implemented?

                • In Vino

                  Dumb concern trolling. You don’t care a damn, and by the time you realise you should have, it will be too late. Go jump into a polluted river, BM.

                  • BM

                    Very useful comment.

                    I’m interested in ideas, solutions and how to implement them doesn’t really matter what the topic is about.

                    • Philj

                      What is your solution and ideas on Climate Change BM?

                    • Lol bm classic bullshit there. Love the line that the topic doesn’t matter because THAT is your role. Concern troll no matter what the subject ffs what a loser.

                      Hey barfly count up those insults will ya.

                    • In Vino

                      Liar, BM. You pretend too much. Your ‘interest in ideas and solutions’ is always is always skewed to undermining leftist ideas. You have become tiresomely boring.

                • Gosman

                  Apparently democracy is the answer but not the democracy we have now. A new and localised version that somehow allows us to achieve amazing things. How is immaterial at this stage. It will just work okay.

                  • adam

                    So you have given up on being a libertarian now Gossy?

                    • Gosman

                      I’ve never been a pure libertarian. My philosophy can be best summed up as ‘The Economist’s editorial position’ or ‘Libertarian realism’.

                • weka

                  “In practical terms that requires (besides land use changes) reducing our energy related emissions at a rate of something like 15% per year, year on year. A hard sinking cap would do it.”

                  How do you make that happen? what sort of plan is required to get that implemented?

                  Here’s a plan.

                  Activists step up the action and continue to build the climate justice and action movements in NZ. Lots of direct action, smart, engaging protest, and awareness raising.

                  Others work at the level of social media and MSM, getting lots of good quality information into the public domain. Tell people the truth and offer them something to do that is proactive and hopeful.

                  More of the general public become alarmed about cc due to extreme weather events and start to make connections between the wellbeing of their own lives (self, family, home, work) and climate change being here now. At this point all levels of activism need to push the notion that it’s not too late.

                  Work with the people that want to change, build action around those people. Sideline and marginalise people who are deniers (of any ilk), who push for the status quo, who promote inaction based on it’s too late, and who troll around cc. Work out effective strategies for this, and then put them in place and focus on the other stuff. Don’t waste time on this, but make it work to the extent that these people aren’t driving the conversation. For people that are still unsure, leave the door open and welcome them in.

                  Eventually there will be a tipping point where enough people understand cc and the need for immediate action. The more pessimistic among us believe that this will only happen once things are collapsing (think lots of floods, brown outs, govt and insurance unable to keep up with infrastructure repair, food shortages at the level of we can’t have tomatoes out of season, all that rather than mad max scenarios). And by that time it’s too late.

                  So stepping up action now is an imperative to get us to that tipping point earlier. Once the public are more on board (don’t know the %, but it’s not going to be everyone, or even necessarily a majority), pressure will be applied to national and local govt as well as business and NGOs. Remember that there will be people wanting action who are in govt (politics and public service), the MSM and business. Lots of people have grandkids.

                  With any luck that will coincide with two things. One is we have a centre-left govt with a strong Green presence, and now people have something competent they can look to for solutions. Two is that the people who have been working on transition for the last decade or two will have enough organisational capacity to go viral within wider parts of society.

                  All of that is possible. There is some luck involved, but there is nothing there that is far out in terms of what NZ society can do. The biggest stumbling block I see is the middle classes still thinking electric cars are going to save the day. I think there are various strategies to change that and IMO that’s where the focus should be. Once those people get on board with transition being urgent and actually a good thing for them personally, I think we will see a lot of change quite fast.

                • Bill

                  The hard sinking cap is technically easy. All that involves is software running on existent flow meters in petrol/diesel holding tanks. (Those tanks are intermediary points of storage for almost all heating and transport fuel)

                  But if you’re then stupid enough to want to hang on to this economic system we have, then forget it.

                  Otherwise, just give the stuff away to the end user.

                  NZ currently subsidises the fossil industry to the tune of some NZ$ 2.5 billion every year (direct and indirect subsidies). That roughly equates to the cost price of all the diesel and petrol used in NZ. Shift the subsidy in the short term so that oil companies get to retain their profits from fossil and don’t get tempted to instantly terminate oil supplies. Nationalise them if need be.

                  By 2035-ish, NZ will then have a fossil free energy sector and we’ll all have had 15 or 20 years to adapt to new and necessary ways of living.

                  I know. Too hard. Too imaginative. Too engaging. Too equitable. Too…not normal.

                  Barreling on into a 3 or 4 degree C future that only idiots think we’ll be able to adapt to is far more sensible.

  8. bugsolutely nz 8

    Part of the solution, as I see it, is to look at present behaviors and change those we can to behaviors that minimize the negative impact on the environment. Production of protein is an area where individuals can have an impact by seeking alternatives to the greenhouse gas producing methods used at present. Farming crickets for protein is one example all you have to do is change your preconceptions.

  9. Corokia 9

    We’ve got a society where almost all information comes in via social media and (for the older generation TV). Almost all the messages are telling people to consume, fly and drive – because that’s freedom and “you deserve it”.
    Somehow the message HAS to change. But the big money is with the status quo. How do we change the message?

    • One Anonymous Bloke 9.1

      Don’t forget that there are many wealthy people struggling with this same problem, who know that we’re all in this together.

      The “us vs. them” on this occasion is between sociopaths (and their right wing thralls) vs. the rest of us, including many world leaders and the vastly overwhelming majority of the global scientific community.

      In the corporate world, Munich Re, for example, has been deadly serious about AGW for years if not decades.

      As for the deniers, I don’t think there’s a solution that includes them. The rest of us have to get on with it and knock them down (legally – which includes the right to self defence) when they get in the way.

      In short, it’s our behaviour, not the message, that has to change. Maybe the monkeywrench has to come out of the mothballs, maybe legal action might be enough. Whatever it is the time for political consensus with sociopaths is over.

      • corokia 9.1.1

        Behaviour has to change- yes.
        But the messages to buy, drive, fly, must change. The messages that turn up on facebook. The ads on TV. The billboards. The ads when we are online.
        How else do you think people are going to start thinking about their carbon footprint?
        Nothing (mainstream) in our current lifestyles reminds us that it actually matters.

        • Gosman 9.1.1.1

          Restricting freedom of expression is necessary then.

          • Corokia 9.1.1.1.1

            We have anti drink driving messages for the public good. We don’t allow cigarette ads. Guess that might be restricting freedom of expression to a certain type of troll.

            • Gosman 9.1.1.1.1.1

              Yes but you aren’t just restricting freedom of expression to goods and services that are deemed unhealthy. You seemingly wish to restrict it for ANY good or service regardless of if using the item has benefits or otherwise.

              • Corokia

                IMO we need more information out there about the importance of reducing CO2 emissions.
                I haven’t mentioned restricting anything.

  10. Philj 10

    Thank you Bill for taking a stand, and to Charlie. At the Wellington Science March it was a jolly hockey sticks, ‘just exercise your vote intelligently folks’. Excuse me… Really! The bell has been tolling for too long, too many prophets have been ridiculed, This is not going away… We are! And it is becoming increasingly obvious. Sorry, but this is as good as it’s gonna get. The time has come to acknowledge the seriousness of the situation and act intelligently now to minimize the wreakage. The obvious global consequence/solution from our ‘leadership’ is … Conflict?
    R. I. A. B We are no different from Rats In A Barrel. Hell, even Gossy & BM are sounding concerned.

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  • Building back better
    It’s a three-week recess in Parliament – so, no bills are going through the House and no select committees are meeting. But the hard work of our ministers continues, and many of our MPs are back in their electorates, taking the opportunity to meet with local communities and businesses about ...
    4 days ago
  • Greens call for a Warrant of Fitness for rental homes
    The Green Party is launching a petition today calling on the Government’s Healthy Homes Standards to be backed up with a proper Warrant of Fitness (WoF) for rental homes. ...
    1 week ago
  • Securing our recovery: By the numbers
    Our plan to secure New Zealand’s recovery from COVID-19 is working, with the past three months seeing the second-highest number of people moved off a main benefit into work since records began. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • More Kiwis in work through recovery plan
    The latest statistics show the Government’s focus on jobs is working. The net number of people on a main benefit dropped by around 11,190 people during the past three months, with around 31,240 people moving off a benefit into work. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Green Party appoints new Chief of Staff
    The Green Party has appointed a new Parliamentary Chief of Staff, Robin Campbell. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • We’re turning 105!
    It’s our birthday! Today, 105 years ago, the New Zealand Labour Party was founded. And we haven’t stopped moving since: fighting for workers’ rights, expanding protections to boost equality, and upholding democratic socialist ideals. We’re now the oldest political party in New Zealand and, as we celebrate our 105 years, ...
    3 weeks ago

  • Minister of Foreign Affairs makes three diplomatic appointments
    Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta today announced three New Zealand Head of Mission appointments. They are: Mike Walsh as Ambassador to Iran Michael Upton as Ambassador to Ethiopia and the African Union Kevin Burnett as Ambassador to Indonesia Iran “Aotearoa New Zealand has a long-standing and constructive relationship with Iran, despite a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
  • Enhanced Task Force Green Approved for West Coast and Marlborough
    The Government has activated Enhanced Task Force Green (ETFG) in response to the West Coast and Marlborough floods, Social Development and Employment Minister Carmel Sepuloni announced today. “To assist with the clean-up, up to $500,000 will be made available to support the recovery in Buller and Marlborough which has experienced ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
  • Govt support for upgrade of Eden Park players facilities
    Minister for Sport and Recreation Hon Grant Robertson has announced funding to upgrade the players facilities at Eden Park ahead of upcoming Women’s World Cup events. Eden Park is a confirmed venue for the Rugby World Cup 2021, the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup 2022, and a proposed venue for matches of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 hours ago
  • More jobs and quicker public transport motoring towards West Auckland
    Work to improve public transport for West Aucklanders and support the region’s economic recovery by creating hundreds of jobs has officially kicked off, Transport Minister Michael Wood announced today. Michael Wood and Auckland Mayor Phil Goff this morning marked the start of construction on the Northwestern Bus Improvements project. It ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 hours ago
  • Government backs critical health research
    Research into some of New Zealanders’ biggest health concerns including cancer, diabetes, and heart disease is getting crucial support in the latest round of health research funding, Health Minister Andrew Little announced today. The funding, awarded through the Health Research Council of New Zealand, covers 31 General Project grants ($36.64 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 hours ago
  • New Bay of Islands hospital facilities to bring services closer to home
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Health Minister Andrew Little have joined a ceremony to bless the site and workers for Phase Two of the redevelopment of the Bay of Islands Hospital in Kawakawa today. The new building will house outpatients and primary care facilities, as well as expanded renal care ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Cabinet accepts Turkish authorities’ request for the managed return of three NZ citizens
    Cabinet has agreed to the managed return of a New Zealand citizen and her two young children from Turkey, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced today. The three have been in immigration detention in Turkey since crossing the border from Syria earlier this year. Turkey has requested that New Zealand repatriate ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Govt delivers more classrooms so children can focus on learning
    Extra Government investment in classrooms and school building projects will enable students and teachers to focus on education rather than overcrowding as school rolls grow across the country, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis say. The pair visited Ruakākā School in Whangārei today to announce $100 ...
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    1 day ago
  • New station a platform for AirportLink to take off
    Every Aucklander with access to the rail network will now have a quick and convenient trip to the airport, Transport Minister Michael Wood and Auckland Mayor Phil Goff said during the official opening of the new Puhinui Interchange today. The new interchange links the rail platform with a new bus ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • 10 days sick leave for employees delivered
    Legislation doubling employees’ minimum sick leave entitlement to 10 days comes into effect today, bringing benefits to both businesses and employees, Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Michael Wood announced today. “Our Government is delivering on a key manifesto commitment to help Kiwis and workplaces stay healthy,” Michael Wood said. “COVID-19 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Prime Minister congratulates Fiame Naomi Mata’afa on Election Win
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern tonight congratulated Prime Minister-elect Fiame Naomi Mata’afa on her victory in the Samoa’s general election. “New Zealand has a special relationship with Samoa, anchored in the Treaty of Friendship. We look forward to working with Samoa’s new government in the spirit of partnership that characterises this ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Quarantine Free Travel with Australia suspended
    Quarantine Free Travel from all Australian states and territories to New Zealand is being suspended as the Covid situation there worsens, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. From 11.59pm today Australians will no longer be able to enter New Zealand quarantine-free. This will be ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Growing conservation efforts in Gisborne
    A big injection of Jobs for Nature funding will create much-needed jobs and financial security for families in TeTairāwhiti, and has exciting prospects for conservation in the region, Conservation Minister Kiri Allan says. “The projects target local communities most affected by the economic consequences of COVID 19 and are designed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Flood recovery given further assistance
    The Government is contributing a further $1 million to help the flood battered Buller community, Acting Emergency Management Minister Kris Faafoi announced today. “Buller is a small community which has found itself suddenly facing significant and ongoing welfare costs. While many emergency welfare costs are reimbursed by Government, this money ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Funding for five projects to reduce food waste
    The Government is funding five projects to help address the growing problem of food waste, Environment Minister David Parker announced today. “New Zealand households throw away nearly 300,000 tonnes of food every year, half of which could still be eaten. By supporting these initiatives, we’re taking steps to reduce this ...
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    5 days ago
  • Temporary Accommodation Service activated for West Coast flooding event
    The Temporary Accommodation Service (TAS) has been activated today - meaning residents on the West Coast of the South Island and in the Marlborough region hit by flooding over the weekend can now access help finding temporary accommodation, announced Associate Minister of Housing (Public Housing) Poto Williams in Westport today. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Pause to Quarantine Free Travel from South Australia to New Zealand
    Quarantine Free Travel from South Australia to New Zealand will be paused from 11.59am (NZT) tonight, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins has announced. However, people currently in the state who ordinarily live in New Zealand will be able to return on “managed return” flights starting with the next available flight, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • New Zealand condemns malicious cyber activity by Chinese state-sponsored actors
    New Zealand has established links between Chinese state-sponsored actors known as Advanced Persistent Threat 40 (APT40) and malicious cyber activity in New Zealand. “The GCSB has worked through a robust technical attribution process in relation to this activity. New Zealand is today joining other countries in strongly condemning this malicious ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Remarks to Diplomatic Corps
    It is a pleasure to be with you all this evening. Some of you may have been surprised when you received an invitation from the Minister of Disarmament and Arms Control, and I would forgive you if you were. New Zealand is unique in having established a Ministerial portfolio ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Early Pfizer shipment boosts vaccine schedule
    The largest shipment of the Pfizer vaccine to date has arrived into New Zealand two days ahead of schedule, and doses are already being delivered to vaccination centres around the country, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins says. “The shipment of more than 370,000 doses reached New Zealand yesterday, following a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Backing for Bay of Islands predator free effort
    The Government is throwing its support behind an ambitious project to restore native biodiversity and build long-term conservation careers, Conservation Minister Kiri Allan says. Predator Free Bay of Islands aims to eradicate predators from the three main peninsulas in the region, and significantly reduce their impact throughout the wider 80,000-plus ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government commits $600,000 to flood recovery
    The Government is contributing $600,000 to help residents affected by the weekend’s violent weather with recovery efforts. Acting Minister for Emergency Management Kris Faafoi and Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor have been in the Buller district this afternoon to assess flood damage and support the local response effort. They have announced ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government assisting local responses to heavy rainfall and high wind
    Acting Minister of Emergency Management Kris Faafoi says Central Government is monitoring the severe weather across the country, and is ready to provide further support to those affected if necessary. “My thoughts are with everyone who has been affected by this latest event, particularly communities on the West Coast and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • PM Ardern chairs APEC Leaders’ meeting on COVID-19
    New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has chaired a meeting of Leaders representing the 21 APEC economies overnight. “For the first time in APEC’s history Leaders have come together for an extraordinary meeting focused exclusively on COVID-19, and how our region can navigate out of the worst health and economic ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Health Minister welcomes progress on nurses’ pay
    The New Zealand Nurses Organisation’s decision to take the Government’s improved pay offer to members and to lift strike notices is a positive move towards settling district health board nurses’ pay claims, Health Minister Andrew Little said. “It’s encouraging that the discussions between NZNO and DHBs over the nurses’ employment ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Boost for Pacific regional business
    Pacific businesses will get a much-needed financial boost as they recover from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic thanks to the new Pacific Aotearoa Regional Enterprise Fund, said Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio.  The new $2 million fund will co-invest in Pacific business projects and initiatives to create ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • PM Ardern call with President Biden
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern spoke with US President Biden this morning, ahead of the APEC Informal Leaders’ Retreat on COVID-19. “President Biden and I discussed the forthcoming APEC leaders meeting and the critical importance of working together as a region to navigate out of the COVID-19 pandemic”, Jacinda Ardern said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Renewed partnership creates jobs for New Zealand youth
    The Government has signed a new memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Mayors Taskforce for Jobs, strengthening the partnership to get more young people into work.  The Mayors Taskforce for Jobs (MTFJ) is a nationwide network of all Mayors in New Zealand, who are committed to making sure all young ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • South Island areas prioritised in tourism fund
    Five South Island areas are prioritised in the latest round of decisions from a tourism fund that is supporting infrastructure projects from Cape Reinga to Stewart Island and the Chathams. Tourism Minister Stuart Nash has announced details of 57 nationwide projects to receive support from the Tourism Infrastructure Fund (TIF). ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New code sets clear expectations for learner safety and wellbeing in tertiary education
    A new code of practice for the pastoral care of domestic tertiary and international students will be in place from January next year, Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today The code, which makes clear that creating an environment that supports learning and wellbeing is a shared responsibility between tertiary providers, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • First TAB New Zealand Board appointments announced
    The members of the first TAB NZ Board come with experience in racing and sport administration, business and governance, the betting industry, broadcasting and gambling harm minimisation. “This Board will progress from the excellent work done by the interim board, put in place in August 2020,” Grant Robertson said. “The ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Northland Maori Pathways initiative introduced
    The Government has today launched Māori Pathways at Northland Region Corrections Facility, a ground-breaking series of initiatives designed in partnership with Māori to reduce re-offending and improve outcomes for whānau. A key part of the Hōkai Rangi strategy, Māori Pathways looks to achieve long-term change and involves a number of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Extended Essential Skills visas being rolled out
    Two year Essential Skills visa to provide certainty to at least 18,000 visa holders Streamlined application process to benefit at least 57,000 visa holders The Government is increasing the duration of some Essential Skills visas and streamlining the application process to provide more certainty to employers and visa holders while ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Pause to Quarantine Free Travel from Victoria to New Zealand
    Quarantine Free Travel from Victoria to New Zealand will be paused from 1.59am (NZT) Friday, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins has announced. The decision follows updated public health advice from New Zealand officials and a growing number of cases and locations of interest. The pause will run for at least ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Hydrogen arrangement signed with Singapore
    The signing of an Arrangement of Cooperation on low-carbon hydrogen with Singapore heralds the start of greater collaboration between it and New Zealand as both countries transition towards low carbon economies, says Energy and Resources Minister Megan Woods. The cooperation arrangement between New Zealand’s Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Hydrogen agreement signed with Singapore
    The signing of a Memorandum of Cooperation on low-carbon hydrogen with Singapore signals the start of greater collaboration between the two countries as they transition towards low carbon economies, says Energy and Resources Minister Dr Megan Woods. The cooperation agreement between New Zealand’s Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Speech to LGNZ Conference
    Kia ora koutou katoa and thank-you for the invitation to speak to you all today. I would like to acknowledge Local Government New Zealand President Stuart Crosby, and Chief Executive, Susan Freeman-Greene, Te Maruata Chair, Bonita Bigham, and our host, Mayor John Leggett. I also acknowledge all the elected members ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Government to provide support for water reforms, jobs and growth
    The Government today announced a $2.5 billion package to support local government transition through the reforms to New Zealand’s drinking water, wastewater and stormwater services. The package will also stimulate local economies while creating jobs and unlocking infrastructure for housing. “New Zealand’s water systems are facing a significant crisis and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Government Initiatives Contribute to Fall in Benefit Numbers
    Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni has welcomed the release of the June quarter Benefit Statistics which show a continuing fall in the number of people receiving a Main Benefit. “This Government’s plan to increase work focused support for Jobseekers is paying off,” Carmel Sepuloni said. “All up Benefit numbers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Tourism support package continues rollout
    Mental wellbeing support is being rolled out to five South Island communities most affected by the absence of international tourists. Tourism Minister Stuart Nash today announced details of how tourism operators and communities can access the help announced in May as part of the government’s $200 million Tourism Communities: Support, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago