Waatea News Column: Climate Change is here now – what will we do?


News last week that the latest studies show Antartica is in danger of melting should shake us from any complacency that climate change is some distant event at the end of the century.

Ice melt and expanding heated water has so far raised the oceans by a small amount, a melt down in Antartica however could turn a few feet into many meters of sea rise, that would devastate every shore line on the planet. The risk is real and we can no longer ignore it.

On top of sea rise we will see worse forest fires, more droughts, diseases spread that we don’t normally have, severe weather events and storms of massive intensity.

So what are we doing?

The latest UN Climate Change meeting in Poland isn’t generating much hope.

Australia and America hosted a side meeting at the conference championing the use of coal, one of the worst climate change causing pollutants. Australia are effectively dooming their Pacific nation neighbours to being swamped by rising oceans and no one other than the Māori Climate Commissioner, Donna Awatere Huata, is calling them out on it...

“By appearing at America’s coal carnival, Australia has slapped the Pacific in the face. Climate change means there can be no future in coal and Australia’s Environmental Ambassador, Patrick Suckling, should resign. Pretending that coal is a solution is pure fantasy and sentences our Pacific neighbours to drowning.”

…at this time we need political leadership on climate change, not more empty promises.

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Waatea News


  1. The information is not new. The timescales are not known precisely but the events ahead are fairly plain to most.

    The problem is much more than climate.

    It is a simple issue, more of the same will produce much more of the same
    The system and power and direction than runs present civilisation has to change radically. .

    Join up. It growing and worldwide.


    There is already a chapter in Tauranga.


    and many others.

  2. We may have no chance so let us use it.

    An incomplete logical framework for a social and environmental party that understands the mechanism and consequences of socioeconomic class, ecological systems, the political economy, and the general inter-dependencies between these.

    Strategic Goal:

    Poverty Reduction and Climate Resilience
    through rapid transformational change across all sectors of society in New Zealand

    Implementation Strategies:

    1. Maintaining a solid parliamentary majority for transformational socio-economic change
    2. Just and non-exploitative economic measures based on renewable resources and fair wages
    3. Establishment of a functional network of community-based climate adaptation groups
    4. Emphasizing science, education, training: voices for transformational change
    5. South Pacific cooperation and safeguarding of Antarctica

    Main Action:

    1.1 Formation of a class- and system oriented, social and ecological political party (‘NZ Eco-Socialists’, ‘NZ Red-Greens’, etc.)
    1.2 Supporting selected, existing Green Party’s policies for practical adaptation and mitigation measures
    1.3 Strengthening awareness for transformational change within voter groups of the National and the Labour Party

    2.1 Sustainable forest conservation, forestry and local value chains
    2.2 Conservation of aquatic resources, sustainable fisheries and local value chains
    2.3 Farming systems diversification and quality agriculture / livestock products and regional value chains

    3.1 Organization of the NZ ‘Local Climate Change Alliance’ consisting of local individuals and groups beyond the NZ party structure
    3.2 Community-based early warning systems and security protocols
    3.3 Local disaster risk reduction and management measures, coastal erosion control, food security, public infrastructure

    4.1 Upper house of parliament with assigned seats for scientists, vulnerable groups, ethnic representatives, intellectual cadres, etc., specific veto-arrangements
    4.2 Education system with strong focus on a) life-skills and b) system theories
    4.3 Vocational training in professions relevant for practical climate adaptation, mitigation, resilience

    5.1 The Pacific Way: Regional collaboration in the South Pacific
    5.2 Safeguarding Antarctica
    5.3 Non-alignment and military options

    We may have no chance so let us use it.

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