Pandemic nobbles the polluters and prompts a rethink about climate change’s place in policy priorities

As the Covid-19 pandemic plunges the  world  into a  recession – deeper probably   than the global  financial  crisis – thousands  of  New Zealanders are losing  their jobs  and the  country’s  economy is  already  under  enormous  pressure. Some authorities  predict  it will precipitate a  revolution in  how  we live.

What, then,  about that other revolution which climate change warriors insist is essential  if  we  are not to face  extinction? Can it be relegated in policy priorities as  the government  seeks   to  plot  a  way through the  human  and  economic  misery  of the pandemic?

Covid-19 has cleared the skies of pollution. Carbon emissions  from the worst polluters  (airlines and  land  transport)  have  shrunk  almost to  zero.   International  tourism has come to a  halt,  cruise  liners  are  being laid up, and the global  warming   which  appeared to be such a threat  only  weeks   ago  is  moving at a  much slower  pace.

Those  in the  Extinction Rebellion  movement  who  preached   business as usual is the  enemy in the campaign  against  global  warming  have fallen  silent.  Business  as usual  looks to be  a  nirvana NZ  is  unlikely to  reach again  any time soon. Continue reading “Pandemic nobbles the polluters and prompts a rethink about climate change’s place in policy priorities”

Climate commission’s challenge is to produce a world-leading plan (dairying included) for a low-emissions economy

Global efforts to tackle climate change have stalled in Madrid.  The  197  parties to the UN  talks  agreed to the need  for  new  emission  cuts, but they stopped  short  of concrete  commitments  and left  the outstanding issues of  the  Paris  Agreement undecided.

Never mind,  NZ  is  showing  the world  what  “meaningful, ambitious and lasting climate action looks like”.

That’s  how  Climate  Change Minister  James Shaw  sees  it.

As the head of the NZ delegation at the global climate talks, Shaw shared  with delegates  to   COP25 the progress the  Ardern government is making

“ … to build a cleaner, safer planet for future generations”. Continue reading “Climate commission’s challenge is to produce a world-leading plan (dairying included) for a low-emissions economy”

Green co-leader will be led by science – but GM is not yet a Shaw thing

The  Ardern   government  wants to  lead the world  in implementing  measures  to  combat  climate  change.  Prime Minister  Jacinda Ardern put her personal stamp on this by saying it will be  her  government”s  “nuclear-free”  moment.

The science  on  global  warming  is clear,  say  both   Labour and  the Greens.   So  shouldn’t every   kind of  science   be  used  to  combat it?

Well,  no,  says  the  Green  Party.  It  refuses   to  contemplate  genetic  modification  as an instrument   for  example   in the  campaign  to  make  NZ-predator   free.

Predator Free 2050 is forbidden from carrying out any research which could lead to the use of genetic modification or gene editing, a letter written by Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage shows. Continue reading “Green co-leader will be led by science – but GM is not yet a Shaw thing”