Time for the Government to do the right thing and take strong action on climate change

It’s time for the National Government to step up and do the right thing to reduce climate pollution as data shows New Zealand’s greenhouse gas emissions are higher than ever, the Green Party said today.

The Greenhouse Gas inventory released by the Ministry for the Environment shows that New Zealand’s emissions have risen 23 percent since 1990, when the Government should be focussing on reducing emissions.

“After eight years in government and lots of talk about reducing climate pollution, National has actually allowed climate pollution to increase,” said Green Party Co-leader James Shaw.

“Two weeks ago, the Government signed the Paris Agreement committing them to pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 degC. The Green Party has developed a number of solutions that can be undertaken immediately to show New Zealand’s commitment to make this happen.

“First, we would put a proper price on pollution and redistribute the revenue as tax credits to direct spending and investment towards climate-friendly goods and services.

“Second, we would set up a politically independent Climate Commission to advise the Government on policy settings to guide the transition to a low-carbon economy.

“The Green Party would also set up a Green Investment Bank to spur investment in high value green jobs and industries.

“The world doesn’t have time for National to pay lip service to climate change measures. We must take action now. The consequences of a 2 degC temperature rise are too grave.

“Our climate change policy is about improving the way we live and do business. We can reduce emissions, create jobs and enhance our quality of life,” said Mr Shaw.

 

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