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Greens back call for new climate law

The Green Party is backing the call by Parliament's environment watchdog for all political parties to support a new law that would require governments to tackle climate pollution in New Zealand.

Today the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment recommended all parties come together to support a new climate law that would make emissions targets legally binding and establish an independent expert group to advise government on climate policy and track its progress.

“We have a responsibility to pass on a safe, stable climate to the next generation and that requires us to work together, across political lines and successive governments. This law would help us do exactly that,” said Green Party MP Dr Kennedy Graham.

“I put forward the idea of a Climate Commission in a Members Bill in 2013 so it’s good that support for the idea is growing.

“Making our climate targets legally binding would ensure ongoing investment in clean energy; fast, reliable public transport; and sustainable forms of agriculture, which also contribute to our economy.

“It’s clear the current approach isn’t working, with climate pollution increasing almost 20 percent in the last nine years and expected to keep rising.

“Getting cross-party support for action on climate change has been a priority for me. We’ve had success with the cross-party climate working group, GLOBE-NZ, so I am hopeful that multi-partisan support for a climate law can be achieved,” said Dr Graham.