Dutch court ruling on climate change should spur NZ Govt to act

The New Zealand Government must dramatically increase its target for reducing greenhouse gas emissions as public demands for change both at home and internationally raise serious questions about inaction on climate, the Green Party said today.

Last night, a Dutch court ordered the Dutch Government to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 25 percent in the next five years, in order to protect its citizens from climate change. It had been sued by citizens for neglecting to look after its people.

This morning, activists from Greenpeace scaled Parliament House in New Zealand, and erected solar panels, calling for more decisive action on climate change in the face of Government ambivalence.

“The Government must wake up to the fact that young people both here and around the world are demanding action from their Governments to protect both their people and their environment from the effects of climate change,” said Green Party Co-leader James Shaw.

“The Dutch court at the Hague has decided that its Government’s action is not enough to avert the imminent danger caused by climate change, despite them being ahead of us already. That shows how flimsy New Zealand’s weak targets are.

“New Zealand’s greenhouse gas emissions per capita are higher than the Netherlands, and we have a smaller emissions reduction target.

“The ruling says that the State has a responsibility for controlling emissions levels, and has a duty of care to protect and improve the living environment. Meanwhile, here in New Zealand greenhouse gases are increasing under the National Government.

“These two events show that there is building momentum on governments to take action in the face of the greatest challenge the world has yet seen. People are frustrated with their governments, who are charged with emissions control and with looking after their citizens,” Mr Shaw said.


The Dutch court ruling is here: http://uitspraken.rechtspraak.nl/inziendocument?id=ECLI:NL:RBDHA:2015:7196



Latest Environment Announcements


Take action to protect our oceans

We’re taking the health of our oceans seriously and our Thriving Oceans Plan sets out exactly how the Green Party will protect them so we all can e...

Thriving Oceans

Oceans are the lifeblood of our planet and home to thousands of taonga species, providing us with nourishing food to feed our families, supporting ...
Read More

Farming For The Future

Here in Aotearoa, we can have a thriving and sustainable farming sector that is good for farmers, good for people, and good for the planet. By maki...
Read More


More action on waste – Government funds recycling infrastructure, moves to standardise kerbside collections

$36.7m Government investment in high-tech recycling plants nationwide Plan to standardise and improve the nation’s kerbside collections As part o...
Read More


New rules for the outdoor storage of tyres

The Government is introducing environmental standards for tyres stored outdoors announced Associate Minister for the Environment, Eugenie Sage. “A ...
Read More


Government announces plan to tackle problem plastics and seven single-use plastic items

Following the success of the phase out of single-use plastic shopping bags, the Government now has plans to phase out more single-use and problem p...
Read More