Some of the world’s best economists have today reaffirmed the urgency and the benefits of shifting to a low carbon, high innovation economy, the Green Party said.
A new report from the Global Commission on the Economy and Climate has found that investments to help fight climate change can also drive economic development and jobs, but time is running out for the massive shift needed to secure a stable climate. The report has been timed to inform discussions at the September 23 climate summit in New York.
“As the world’s leading economists have just stated, planning for a low carbon, high innovation economy is the best way to secure our future economic prosperity and protect the environment from runaway climate change,” said Green Party Co-leader Dr Russel Norman.
“This report shows National's refusal to take meaningful action on climate change will harm our economy. We need a new economic direction.
“A smarter greener economy is not only the right economic direction to take, but it’s also one we can benefit from.
“Bill English says acting on climate change is a ‘luxury we cannot afford’, but the world's economists keep proving him wrong.
“Under National, the Ministry for the Environment projects that New Zealand’s net emissions will increase by 50 percent by 2020.
“National has failed to get our economy climate ready and another three years will only make matters worse,” Dr Norman said.
The Green Party has announced in the run-up to this election an extensive set of policies to help transition New Zealand’s economy towards a low carbon, high innovation future.
“The Green Party has a win-win plan to protect our climate, achieve carbon neutrality by 2050, and leave Kiwi families better off,” Dr Norman said.
“We will phase out the failed Emissions Trading Scheme and instead put a meaningful price on carbon through a charge on polluters. All revenues raised will be recycled back to families and businesses in the form of a tax cut. Households will be on average $319 better off every year with our Climate Tax Cut according to independent economic analysts, BERL.
“We will establish the Green Investment Bank – a government-owned, for-profit bank that will partner with the private sector to fund new cleantech and renewable energy projects.
“Our plan to build a smarter, more innovative economy will see an additional $1 billion of government investment into R&D, including tax breaks for business.
“We will help Kiwi families and schools invest in solar power and will fast-lane the uptake of electric cars by investing $10 million into the roll-out of fast-charging electric car refuelling stations across New Zealand and $10 million into cash-back payments to electric car buyers.
“Finally, we will shift money currently going into low-value motorways into rapid transit, ensuring city buses and trains run every few minutes at peak times while giving students free access to off-peak public transport through our Student Green Card.”
You can read the New Climate Economy report here: