“Cabinet needs to do better - and today has shown exactly why we need Green Ministers in cabinet, so we can prioritise action to cut climate pollution and support people to make ends meet,” says Green Party co-leader Marama Davidson.
“The Green Party has long called on the Government to increase benefits to help low income families get by. While Cabinet has taken a step forward today, we need permanent action to boost people’s incomes, not just a one-off increase.
“These are political choices, and Labour has shown that we can choose to make changes that help. So, rather than continuing to play catch up, we also must increase benefits to make them liveable.
Green Party co-leader James Shaw added:
“Had I been at Cabinet today, I would have argued against cutting back on climate actions that would help low income households. The Clean Car Upgrade would have provided households with more low-emissions choices about how to get around. This doesn’t sit well on top of the previous extension to the fossil fuel subsidies, which we know benefits the highest earners most.
“Right now, there are a lot of New Zealanders, whose lives have been badly affected by the recent floods and the cyclone, who would argue that climate action is a bread and butter issue for them.
“Our climate targets remain the same. Every time we kick climate action into the future, we make it harder for ourselves to meet those targets.
“It is more important than ever that there are more Green Ministers around the Cabinet table so we can shape the direction of the next Government.
“Cabinet has also slowed down work on the container return scheme the Green Party started in the last government. The Green Party has always been clear that to build a healthy, thriving and low carbon economy we need to cut waste, reduce what we take from nature, and recover and re-use those materials,” says James Shaw.