Don’t Blame James.

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TO SAY that environmentalists are underwhelmed by James Shaw’s latest Climate Change announcements would understate their feelings considerably. With every policy release, Shaw takes another downward step into the shadowland of political ignominy. Pretty soon we won’t be able to see or hear him at all.

In all fairness, to the Minister for Climate Change, he can’t do much else – except, maybe, resign. Even if this government were not so utterly distracted by the deepening Covid-19 crisis, it would have no inclination to take Climate Change seriously.

Jacinda Ardern, Grant Robertson, Chris Hipkins, David Parker and Megan Woods are not heterodox thinkers. When it comes to running the country, they all adhere pretty faithfully to economic and political orthodoxy. Such skills as they do possess are mostly devoted to giving their very conventional views just enough spin to render them electorally palatable. It is dawning on them only slowly that this strategy has a limited lifespan. If you promise to do something, then – eventually – you have to do something.

They certainly do not appear to have fully grasped the reason for their extraordinary electoral success in 2020. In a nutshell, Labour was rewarded foractually doing something about Covid-19. Nobody was really sure if the Elimination Strategy would work. The idea of locking-down an entire country was certainly not an orthodox solution – as a great many business leaders and neoliberal ideologues nervously/furiously pointed out. The thing was, the Government didn’t really have time to think about whether or not their chosen course of action conformed to the rule-book. They had to do something – right now! So, they closed their eyes and pulled the lever. And, wonder-of-wonders, it worked.

But Climate Change isn’t like Covid-19. The need to take urgent action is unquestionably the same, but the consequences of this, or any, government not taking urgent action are unlikely to show up as corpses in a matter of days and weeks. Not following the science (the reason why Auckland is rapidly descending into the same Delta Disaster as New South Wales and Victoria) is definitely going to end badly, but not tomorrow, or next week, or even in a few months, or years. And something that is going to end badly in a few years, doesn’t really leave a very deep impression on a politician’s mind. A few years equals forever in electoral time.

Besides, the sort of changes a government would have to make to produce the slightest difference to this country’s greenhouse gas emissions are so huge, would inflict so much economic damage, that the resulting political resistance simply could not be withstood.

Just recall the relentless fightback against the Government’s Elimination Strategy. “Plan B”, and the unceasing cacophony of voices demanding the creation of the Trans-Tasman Bubble. Not even the Strategy’s outstanding success: in saving lives; in recovering the economy; was enough to shut up the doubters and nay-sayers.

And they won, didn’t they? It’s important to keep that in mind. Jacinda couldn’t do it twice. Even with the number of cases in steady decline, the Big End of Town bounced our orthodox Prime Minister out of Level 4. Two people have already died of this Delta Outbreak – many more (most of them Māori and Pasifika) will follow.

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With the power of the Big End of Town in mind, try to imagine the sheer ferocity of the opposition to measures requiring the owners of SUVs and double-cab utes to take their vehicles off the road. Contemplate the size of the “Groundswell” in response to the compulsory slaughter of a quarter of this country’s dairy cows. Or, the seizure of factories found to be greenhouse-gassing in defiance of cease-and-desist orders.

Is our Police Force – heck, is our Army! – large enough and reliable enough to force New Zealanders to kick the emissions habit? If Jacinda and her colleagues were persuaded that remaining at Level 4 could lead to serious civil unrest, then how hard do you think it would be for their officials to convince them that any meaningful – i.e. radical – action to meet our Climate Change commitments would spark a civil war?

Democracy is not really equipped to deal with a crisis on the global scale of Climate Change. But then, neither is the sort of authoritarian regime we see in China. Xi Jinping is one of the few world leaders taking Climate Change seriously, but just look where that has got him – and the globalised capitalist system.

Xi decreed that China must begin transitioning away from coal-fired power stations by shutting-down the dirtiest coal mines and most polluting power plants. Great! That’s the way to save the world! Umm, no, not really. As you read these words, millions of Chinese shiver in the dark and cold of electricity black-outs. Worse still, the great factories upon which the whole world now depends for its “just-in-time” manufacturing and distribution systems have also gone dark. Supply-chain snarl-ups are rapidly becoming a fact of twenty-first century life – and they’re only going to get worse. Those gaps in the supermarket shelves are not going away.

So, don’t be too hard on poor James Shaw. His pathetic little To-Do list is, indeed, totally inadequate to the crisis. But, you know what? He’ll be lucky to get half of the items ticked-off. There’s just too many entrenched interests – not the least of whom are consumers like you and me – standing in the way.

You don’t believe me? Well, consider this. For New Zealand to escape the clutches of the Delta Variant of Covid-19, all its citizens have to do is roll up their sleeves and accept a couple of jabs of Pfizer vaccine. Pretty simple, huh? And yet, upwards of 10 percent of the population, more than enough to keep Auckland in Lockdown for months, refuse to take two for the Team of Five Million.

So, ask yourself, if people can’t see clearly enough to grasp freedom via vaccination, is it reasonable to suppose that they will willingly wave good-bye to their fossil-fuelled lifestyles?

In the immortal words of Walt Kelly’s cartoon hero, Pogo: “We have met the enemy and he is us.”

 

55 COMMENTS

  1. Let’s assume there’s an earnest young tradie somewhere in NZ that wants to be more green so swaps his ute for an equivalent EV. There’s only one problem with this picture: Such a vehicle doesn’t exist. (before the quibblers step in – it is possible to buy a second hand Japanese Kei Car EV van but it’s not equivalent because it’s tiny, can’t tow and doesn’t have much range)

    It’s much the same for the rest of green policy – it’s fantasy, reliant on technology that doesn’t exist and for all we know, may never exist. Carbon neutral by 2050 is about as likely as interstellar travel at this point and the one thing that would get us halfway there – nuclear power, the Greens and left fear irrationally.

    • Not quite true, there are some private ute EV conversions. But agree, nothing commercially…would need to go head to head with all those incredibly over compensating ute commercials…….

    • While sneering about people cruising off in there SUVs for a latte might appeal to the dimmer bulbs on here there are real life consequences of poorly thought out energy policies. Like granny freezing to death.

      Thanks to their overly enthusiastic alternative to fossil fuels policies Boris and the Brits have got some serious energy problems looming just as winter approaches. Sky rocketing gas prices and an unreliable electricity supply will see thousands of preventable deaths from cold and cold related illnesses this winter.

      Fraser Myles on Spiked:

      “First, our headlong embrace of unreliable wind power means the UK is vulnerable to energy shocks as soon as the wind stops blowing, as it has these past few months. Until there are cheap and easy ways to store wind power for when wind speeds are down this will not be a viable alternative energy source.

      Second, successive governments have neglected nuclear power, despite the fact that it produces carbon-free electricity. They have given far too much credence to the campaigns against this clean, stable energy source – waged by the very same environmentalists who say we need to give up on carbon.

      Third, we have bottled the rollout of fracking. We have vast supplies of gas beneath our feet that we are completely ignoring. Fracking for shale gas may not produce carbon-neutral energy, but it is certainly less polluting than the likes of coal. America’s shale-gas revolution has allowed it not only to decarbonise, but also to have more energy independence. Though the US has not been unscathed by the gas-price shock, it is weathering the crisis much more easily. If the UK extracted just 10 per cent of its shale-gas resources it could meet its gas needs for the next 50 years. But the record price of gas has so far not prompted a rethink on fracking in government.

      The gas-price crisis is a global problem, of course. But had we prioritised our energy needs over green demands we would have been far less exposed to these global headwinds.

      Thanks to a series of terrible green policies Brits will have to endure a great deal of pain this winter and beyond. And the cost of consumer energy bills is not even half of the problem. Even more alarming is the prospect of factories closing down as they become unable to face rising energy prices. A cheap, abundant and reliable supply of energy is the backbone of any growing economy. Britain is in dire need of a manufacturing renaissance, but the energy crisis dashes any hopes of this happening in the near future.

      The government’s green indifference to soaring gas prices is utterly irrational. Once again it is forcing ordinary people to foot the bill for its virtue-signalling. It cannot be allowed to get away with this.”

      • Actually UK is the opposite due to their neoliberal commitments to nuclear power and getting China and others to build them, lack of attention to political influences on their politicians and advisors who have many foreign ‘UK’ citizens generously donating to their party, they have created an energy situation from stupid politically influenced Brexit.

        • The political influence from Labour, Lib dems and Conservative was pro remain, it was the people that said no.
          It’ll be rolling blackouts and freezing grannies thanks to a misguided faith and over-reliance on unreliable wind power and lack of solid base-load capacity from nuclear and peak load capability of gas plants. They were warned but went for a virtue signalling wank with wind.

      • Also sounds like they allowed criminals to steal their alternative power IP that mysteriously surfaces in China. .

        Mysterious factory break-in raises suspicions about Chinese visit
        https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/oct/10/mysterious-factory-break-in-raises-suspicions-about-chinese-visit

        UK lost their ability to manufacture themselves with the rise of Thatcherism.
        Why doesn’t Britain have a Huawei of its own? The answer speaks volumes
        https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/may/08/britain-huawei-general-electric-company-thatcherism

        (Note NZ is the same, continually selling our assets and no longer control products and businesses here, affecting housing, goods and food).

      • Not just the UK either: Most of Europe and China are in the same situation. And yes, you’re right – people will *actually die* because of this, and not just a few.
        Guess who in Europe is energy secure: The French; because they’ve been nuclear since I was a kid.
        Brussels bureaucrats are blaming “an unusually cold winter” in Europe. Say that again! How does that compare to the ‘experts’ telling me 25 years ago that the UK would never see snow again because of global warming?

      • Spiked magazine has been taken over and funded by the Koch brothers – notorious fossil fuel scum who secretly fund anything to stop the inevitable shift to renewables. They’re the ones pushing this ‘renewables is the cause of energy shortages’ bullshit discourse that people like you fall for because you don’t do enough digging into who is pushing the message.

        BTW, the gas problems are entirely the fault of the UK and EU pandering to Russia/Putin and putting roadblocks in the way of renewables, and has been predicted for the past few years.

    • Yes, it is beginning to look like the survival of our planet might be fantasy, as Chris points out, because of views such as your own. It won’t stop some of us trying though.

    • I support continuing nuclear power where it is already in place, but not even the right support it for NZ, because it just does not stack up economically against our abundant renewable energy resources.

  2. Just like how the rich boomers demand that the poor and young lockdown and sacrifice everything to keep the old rich alive and firmly on top, the multimillionaire beachfront property owners want us all to stop using the only heating we can afford, our wood fires as we may affect global warming which will affect the sea levels and may threaten their luxury lifestyle. We should perhaps just die and let them have everything, “its what kiwis expect” afterall eh Jacinda.

  3. Very good Chris.
    What you are basically saying though is that we are stuffed. I would like to know why any person who cares about this planet can keep voting for “more of the same”, because that’s all we’ve ever got since 1984. Where are the people who can change Neoliberal Capitalism? All the words before elections turn out to be total bullshit and it has come to the point where we are wasting our time voting. Election after election, just like the USA, it doesn’t matter who you vote for you get the same outcome….. sycophantic leaders following the predetermined path to Planetary destruction.

    • 1000% spot on. Jacinda doing a 180 on everything she pretended to give a fuck about means I cannot see myself ever voting again.

  4. And a great example is ex National MP Sandra Goudie. Now as Mayor of Thames Coromandel, an area synonymous with environmental beauty you think Goudie would do everything in her power to protect the environment. But given her stance on the vaccine I’ m surprised there aren’t a swag of mines being open in the Coromandel…

    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/covid-19-delta-outbreak-thames-coromandel-mayors-vaccine-remarks-appalling-stuff-councillor-says/IMOGJJ3QGPMTX6KPHG4TXLKWHU/

  5. A good read Chris. All you say sits easy with me. We are all hypocrites of variable degree. We say the right stuff but like Jacinda we don’t always do the right stuff. Greenie people amuse me the most because of their double standards. Whether it be the car they own the planes they fly in, the petroleum clothing they wear etc. we all do it. Farmers deserved the stick over water and fertiliser use but the majority of the population aren’t farmers so it was easy, they make great targets. I do believe we should head in the right direction with environmental concerns, but don’t believe we should lead the way, simply because what we should do, won’t make any difference to the larger world, but because of our isolation it will affect our economy badly. I’ll get shot down for that here but it’s my opinion. Where I differ to Chris is the “Big end of town” many on this forum blame the pressure that’s been put on this government for the alert changes. Of course that’s nonsense. There will always be different groups pushing their case. This is a populist government not a courageous government. Jacinda wouldn’t push Winston for a CGT so She’s sure not going to keep Auckland locked up for three months. It would be political suicide. Shaw gets slated for being a realist not an ideologist.

  6. We lack the political and societal will to make the changes needed. It’s time we admitted this and came up with policies to adapt.

  7. As the planet burns, James Shaw and the Green Party should be blamed because they have not only helped the continuing pollution of NZ, but also the low price of the carbon containment fund will also have serious economic consequences as NZ taxpayers pay the polluters tab and their is little reason to actually change in NZ.

    Labour and other parties have little environmental policy, so it is even more disastrous that the current Greens are not environmentalists and taking up seats in the Green party. The current Green Party MP’s should be in Labour not the Greens. Instead due to the ease of taking over the Green Party all the environmental dead wood Green MP’s are enabling all the wrong decisions for NZ with Labour who don’t care either. They can’t blame Winston now.

    Not only that, but their other ‘special’ policy is disastrous too aka renters are worse off due to the Greens and Labours efforts to destroy landlords (because it’s easy) while enabling big development business and the polluting construction industry (demo cheap housing and put up concrete Mcmansion’s that Kiwis can’t afford and make the government subsidise that and the 8% carbon emissions from concrete). There is also the Greens disastrous gender policy that allows men to self transition to take over woman’s spaces and identity.

    From no right turn.

    “Last month, in the wake of the September carbon auction, I talked about how the government’s policy of flooding the market with a “cost containment reserve” of an extra 7 million tons of pollution in an effort to keep carbon costs low was a huge waste of money. Ministry for the Environment has now released their auction monitoring report, so we can see exactly how big a waste of money it was. The “interim clearing price” – pre-CCR – was $57 / ton. The final clearing price – post-CCR – was $53.85. So the government’s flooding of the market saved polluters all of $3.15 a ton, or (when multiplied by the original auction volume of 4.75 million tons) just under $15 million.

    The government values carbon internally at $150 / ton. So the social cost of that extra 7 million tons of pollution they have allowed is $1.05 billion. Or about 70 times more than the amount of money they saved, a benefit-cost ratio of 0.014. Which is even worse than the proverbial Auckland motorway, previously the rule-of-thumb for “waste of money”.

    While carbon prices have now settled at $64.50, that’s just short of the 2022 CCR trigger price of $70/ton. So there’s every chance that this tremendous polluting waste will be repeated next year. And possibly the year after that. The policy conclusion is simple: the CCR must be repealed.”

    http://norightturn.blogspot.com

    And

    “Last month the Emissions Trading Scheme turned into a farce, when the government flooded the market with credits in a failed and wasteful attempt to Keep Carbon Prices Low. When I asked about the background of this policy Climate Change Minister James Shaw sent me one of the most egregious “fuck you” responses to an OIA request I have ever seen:”

    http://norightturn.blogspot.com

  8. The Shaw “to do list” is self described as a discussion document not a plan. Whatever the intention it requires some serious work to become anything resembling a coherent plan; the complexities involved and consequences resulting are daunting. The Greens are crowing, on their web page, about how they got our gas exploration shut down. That little or no thought was given or consultation or calculation undertaken about the implications of that seems terribly irresponsible at best.

    A bit over half our total energy use comes from fossil fuels. Thus we would need to double our renewable electricity generation and distribution with nothing even envisaged for how we achieve that. How do we transition to electricity for home, industry and transport with no plan for additional generation. Burning Indonesian coal?

  9. I remember hearing about cathedrals taking hundreds of years to build. Generations of workers from a family spent their time on earth putting in their part of the jigsaw, committed to seeing it done, knowing they would never see it done.

    No government can do something substantial because the people won’t wear it. Politicians know what should be done but know if they set out on doing it, in three years, maybe six, they’ll be gone. That’s the way an individualistic, instant gratification, partisan, dog eat dog world works.

    Do nothing significant past scratching the dog’s tummy and maybe have a flag referendum and you’ll be right, you’ll get another three year lap of the track.

    Yesterday I saw a sneering comment from a former MP that Jacinda Ardern had killed the oil and gas industries in New Zealand. Is there a way back from the emotion of that and how it is received and used by those inclined? Is there a way forward from that?

    • Ironic that you use the great Cathedral Building era as an analogy. This vast building of cathedrals time period only happened due to a warming of the globe and a era of plentiful. There was plenty of food and a warmer environment, which allowed for such frivolous activities as monument building.

      Question: why did the earth suddenly warm? I thought ALL climatic change was only brought on by humans??

  10. More on NZ’s disastrous emissions and construction policy that is not only contributing huge amounts of CO2 from the concrete but also massive landfill waste from the constant demolition of existing affordable housing.

    “Cement is the source of about 8% of the world’s carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, according to think tank Chatham House.
    If the cement industry were a country, it would be the third largest emitter in the world – behind China and the US. It contributes more CO2 than aviation fuel (2.5%) and is not far behind the global agriculture business (12%).”
    https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-46455844

    And landfill from construction.

    “The construction and demolition (C&D) industry is one of the largest waste producing industries in New Zealand. C&D waste may represent up to 50% of all waste generated in New Zealand, 20% of all waste going to landfill and 80% of all waste going to cleanfill.”
    https://www.gw.govt.nz/construction-and-demolition-waste/

    Also people in Wellington seem to be part of the problem.
    https://www.stuff.co.nz/environment/300106956/wellington-sending-more-waste-to-landfill-not-less

    So be aware NZ’s current ‘housing’ policy is not only producing un affordable houses on NZ wages, it is increasing NZ’s carbon emissions with concrete (while Kiwi taxpayers pay for it via the carbon containment fund) and increasing NZ’s landfill as they demolish existing housing instead of renovating and re-using construction materials. Oh and NZ is now very short of materials such as wood and steel as our neoliberals sold off the businesses overseas, and the products are exported from NZ and slowly imported back at high costs.

  11. The Greens are not a “serious” political party —- for example
    – Not pushing for Cannabis Law Reform after 1.4 million Kiwis voted yes — its’ their baby.
    – On-going lies from Golriz, such as, being a Human Rights defender, being a Refugee — they spoke to her…get rid of her Greens
    – Julie Anne walking out of a TV interview last week after being asked simple questions on her policies, nice touch after 10 years in Parliament
    – Marama wanting to free the “C” word (C**t for those not in the know) with public announcements/media statements – this was her first actions after 6 months as Co-Leader
    – Ricardo trying to jump the MIQ line with the “don’t you know who I am” argument
    – Elizabeth being unpleasant towards teens submitters during the Zoom Select Hearings — despite the Parliament rules on Select Hearings stating this is not allowed
    – Chloe winning Auckland Central in large part – because Labour had a deeply unpopular candidate running in Auckland Central — not once, but twice
    – Finally, James Shaw (aka Shake down artist) lobbies very hard to become the Climate Change Minister with a large budget, staff, resources — then straight away claims he can’t do much about Climate Change in NZ due to multiple reasons— why fund the Ministry of Climate Change then??

    • Nathan Kerr. And those are the Green’s better points. You forgot Marama and the Green girls hijacking the tragic Muslim vigil for divisive racist purposes, Elizabeth Kerekere’s maiden speech lambasting “Colonialsm “ for reducing the gender diversity apparently once widespread among Maori. As a theoretically environment party, their prioritising is abysmal and doesn’t bode well for the future of planet earth.

  12. “For New Zealand to escape the clutches of the Delta Variant of Covid-19, all its citizens have to do is roll up their sleeves and accept a couple of jabs of Pfizer vaccine.”
    Everyone that has been keeping abreast of how this vaccine in working in the countries that are way ahead of us in their vaccination programmes understands that this is misinformation.
    The Pfizer Vaccine at 100% coverage will clearly not stop the spread of the virus or stop it making people sick and dying . It will only temporarily reduce the severity of illness and may reduce deaths but not eliminate them. The longer term effects of the vaccine may actually also cause a reduction in natural immunity to later variants , while “training” the virus to mutate into more resistant forms.
    Just as bacteria are constantly evolving to become resistant to antibiotics, so rolling out a vaccine while a viral pandemic is in full swing provides the virus with unlimited chances of developing strains that escape that vaccine. But the rate of mutation in a virus like this is far greater than a bacterium as the RNA strand is far less complex. For gene sequencing to be able to identify who infected who as it seems to do, there must be some change between every infected person. The virus is always going to win. Natural immunity is the only thing that is going to bring us back to normal, and covid will be with us like colds and flu.
    D J S

  13. The enemy is within, but not us? Good post Mr Trotter. My twisted mind thinks the same folk who won’t get the jab are the same folk that deny CC is caused by man therefore fuck you all it’s another conspiracy or hoax.
    Where do you start to unravel this mess in the population? Education is my guess. Not school but TV, Radio, Social media get the message into those doubters with science and proof. Whatever it takes it is time to do it.

  14. There are really only two directions society can go in dealing with late stage Climate Disaster in this country specifically–Eco Socialism or Authoritarianism. Much the same as various other countries that still retain bourgeois democracy, this is not paranoia or dystopian rambling–on January 6 the USA was a hair away from an armed MAGA coup. Authoritarian and right wing Governments are in office in so many places already beyond obvious suspects Brazil, Hungary, Poland, much of Latin America and Asia, Russia, India and so on.

    The balance of class forces in Aotearoa NZ suggests that when the proverbial hits the fan we are more likely to have cannibal gangs roaming the countryside Mad Max Fury Road style, than a peaceful, Green, decentralised, sustainable paradise.

    But maybe the big industrial blocs and NZ Dairying will totally stuff the place for all of us regardless.

  15. The political problem with reducing the nation’s emissions has always been that ordinary average Kiwis don’t want to give up the cheap and convenient fossil fuels, and in particular their personal vehicles. Those Kiwis don’t want to pay more for anything that reduces emissions. They want someone else to change, not themselves.

    I don’t usually defend the Arden government, but it is untrue and so unfair to say they have caved in to ‘The Big End of Town’ (an Australian phrase). Ardern has happily ignored the business sector’s pleas since the pandemic started.

    What changed is that Delta is no longer eradicatable, and the fiscal cost of level 4 was taking up all the money that Labour will need for everything else they need to do – like decarbonising the transport and process heat sectors.

  16. Quite right Chris. Thanks for putting it in writing. In fact the BIG END OF TOWN have done such a great job with their propaganda. So many people dont know about, understand or even care about global heating. So Jacinda finds a corporate with a beard [so he must be a hippie, right?] to set the rules for our guidance. Except, the only thing corporates understand is money.

  17. You write @ CT.
    “Besides, the sort of changes a government would have to make to produce the slightest difference to this country’s greenhouse gas emissions are so huge, would inflict so much economic damage, that the resulting political resistance simply could not be withstood.”
    I don’t agree. I’d like to agree, but I don’t.
    wee jimmy shaw’s a corporate man. And once a corporate man, always a corporate man. They’re like God botherers. Even if the get struck by lightening then get caught with their diddles up an elephant, they’re still God botherers.
    Wikipedia:
    “Before returning to Wellington in 2010, Shaw worked in the consulting division at PricewaterhouseCoopers. Between 2011 and 2014, Shaw worked as both a consultant for HSBC bank on “environmental awareness programmes for future leaders” and also at Wellington social enterprise the Akina Foundation.”
    Did he? That’s nice dears.
    Wee jimmy is, in my opinion, in there, in the green party, in the roll of the Machiavellian Confederate.
    The reason I write that is because our primary industry is agrarian therefore Green dependent but is predated by the bankster mafioso, I wonder if pricewaterhousecoopers and hsbc bank could expand on that?
    It’s the banksters who insist our agrarian FOOD PRODUCERS farm as far from Green as their tax break John Deers will carry them. The reason why on-farm profits are not as cash after tax payments but instead income tangled up in the pubic hair of foreign banksters and the entirely corrupt IRD is because control, dumbasses! The banksters and the IRD have our farmers all sown up. Our farmers are effectively working in financial straight jackets and wee corporate jimmy plays his part by making absolutely sure our farmers, the filthy polluters we know they are, thanks to the bankster all bought and paid for MSM who constantly tell us they are, and can never, ever go organic, regenerative and modest in terms of farming methods. Wee jimmy’s fucking around with pointless bird and flower gibberish while our primary agrarian industry is forced into disastrous farming practises by the rapacious greed of the same bankster industry wee jimmy used to work within. I mean, hello!?
    Wee jimmy’s all about the money baby and AO/NZ’s money is all about farming. It was farmer money which built The Big Ends of The Towns, we should remember that?
    ( Farmers? Hello? Anyone out there? )

  18. You loose all credibility with this comment………..’all its citizens have to do is roll up their sleeves and accept a couple of jabs of Pfizer vaccine’………it infers there is NO OTHER OPTION, which there is.

    • You don’t need to name them. The point is not whether the vaccine works or kills you or gives you 3 extra fingers. I don’t know what it does? I just follow orders. The point is: are you going to be part of the 90% solution or are you going to be part of the 10% problem? Before you get angry at me…THAT is your govt ‘s proposed solution…90% vaccinated. So if we can’t go boating or bbq with mate this summer because NZ won’t hit 90% then it’s on every anti-vaxxers head. That’s what Chris means by taking two for the team. It’s going to get ugly. Sadly.

  19. I like the ‘filthy old’ car buy-back scheme: we’ll give give you say $2000 to get rid of your dirty banger. Now go and buy a 60K EV. Well thought out as always, so that’ll work a treat! Every Labour and Green voter can afford a 50K or 60K EV, so it’s a go go go!!!

    • Strawman arguments means an immediate loss of credibility.
      WE DO NOT need EVERYONE to buy an EV tomorrow. EV’s will be cheaper, like for like, within a year or three, all things being equal. NZ is ripped off for most things we buy, so maybe a tad long in Slavelandia. So new car buyers will buy more EV’s as per around the world. How long has it taken Norway to be about 50/50 with EV’s?
      IMHO, any arguemnt requiring a ‘it must all be done tomorrow and as it can’t’ thus QED, is B.S and shows up the person who proposes that argument as lying or ‘too stupid to be stupid’.

  20. Greenpeace through an OIA got hold of the draft Climate Change commission report. Now in that report it said the thing that would make the most difference to the climate crises is reducing dairy farming.

    This was removed from the final document. Is this anything to do with James Shaw.

    I think whoever saw that it was removed should be removed from parliament.

    It is a disgrace.

  21. James was always on a hiding for nothing

    1) we are never going to kill off half the cows because they are now fairly much all that we have now to pay our way in the world.

    2) killing half the sheep to plant pine trees for carbon credits so Air NZ can keep flying is just plain dumb and the population knows it

    3) putting up the price of transport fuels in the belief that will curtail their use. Just won’t happen the tradies and truckies will still use what they need and just pass the cost on through to the consumer public.

    4) believing that pretty much everything is going to run on electricity is just daft. Where is all this extra generation going to come from? Sun and wind, nice thought but not reliable.
    No, its from burning imported coal at Huntly, is does that enhance credibility?

    Now if James wanted to taken seriously he push to build the Luggat and Queensbury dams planned for the Clutha after the Clyde. Flood a bit of DOC land on the west coast and seriously increase the renewable hydro electricity capacity.

    And horrors of horrors start the conversation on nuclear power.

    Then if the “clean” energy can be seen to be coming on stream the public just might buy into change.

    But if is just “you can’t drive your car, you can’t light your fire, you have to kill the cows and everything is going to cost more so you are going to be poorer” which is in essence the current message
    Poor James is dead in the water with no buy in.

  22. I appreciate the political and social reality check that Mr. Trotter gives us. Sad but true. We probably need to take many steps backwards in order to go forward.

  23. I agree Chris and agree we dont have the collect will to make a difference.

    You will all think I am nuts (if you dont already) but I dont think anything we do here on earth is going to make a difference. I am not going to go into anything controversial but I think that this century is going to be a very tough one for both earth and humanity and ‘man made’ climate change is not the thing that we need to worry most about.

  24. @ ADA
    re: in particular their personal vehicles.
    There is a significant number of NZers who may wish to give up “their personal vehicles”, but like me – they cannot. I am so disabled with Multiple Sclerosis that I can barely remove my walker from the rear of my RAUM. I simply CANNOT use public transport. I think that many NZers don’t want to even see us! I sometimes call a “bystander” to please help me as it is very energy-consuming for me to get my walker out of my vehicle by myself. It is simple to live a decent life: simply treat others how I/you wish to be treated. IMO, that’s no big deal for the majority of us.

    • Isabel. H. I recall that you worked as a registered nurse. Thank you for your great contribution to the community, our traditional registered nurses were exemplary professionals who we were lucky to have. I am sorry that your life can be difficult now, and if I could help you, I would. Kia kaha.

  25. You got it right, Chris. In a democracy present comfort trumps, well, every future thing. My decidedly rationalist cousin was just telling me in a morass of mental cases (my family) I should have children, and at 55. It’s so fucken ridiculous, the science on one side and the stupidity of our fat bums on the other. And the latter wins.

  26. Plenty of power at Tiwai Pt.
    De-commercialise the Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill and push it hard and early and Greens will have great success.

    • Closing tiwai makes us even more dependant on the cows for income!!
      For any of these “green initiatives ” to work More reliable renewable electricity must come on line.
      In reality there is none .

      • No it doesn’t all roads of the economy don’t have to be polluting.

        Intensive farming of cows should be stopped (instead in NZ it is encouraged aka waste water consents for intensive dairy, piped to the ocean, given permission by the pro polluting Environment court), but farming doesn’t have to be polluting and is necessary for food.

        NZ could have led the very profitable green economic movement, instead we have gone backwards, by a long way in the past decades.

  27. Real story emissions in NZ as all the governments ‘favourites’ industry and ideologies are rapidly increasing their polluting ways with higher emissions in March such as power, water and mining, while those often blamed are actually decreasing emissions such as agriculture and households!

    Greenhouse gas emissions (industry and household): March 2021 quarter
    https://www.stats.govt.nz/experimental/greenhouse-gas-emissions-industry-and-household-march-2021-quarter

    As more people come to NZ and our polluting energy systems such as power rake in more charges these emissions INCREASING 28% even during Covid. Households are using LESS emissions aka falling 7.6%.(even though people are home more). Agriculture is slightly DECREASING in emissions, services INCREASING emissions 2.5%, transport and postal INCREASING emissions, mining INCREASING emissions, construction and manufacturing UNCHANGED (but due to Covid should be down!)

    Electricity, gas, water, and waste service emissions rose 28 percent (552 kilotonnes).
    Household emissions fell 7.6 percent (203 kilotonnes).
    Agriculture, forestry, and fishing emissions fell 0.6 percent (64 kilotonnes).
    Services excluding transport, postal, and warehousing emissions rose 2.5 percent (22 kilotonnes).
    Transport, postal, and warehousing emissions rose 1.6 percent (13 kilotonnes). Emissions for this industry are still well below pre-COVID-19 levels due to ongoing border closures, impacting international travel.
    Mining emissions rose 3.2 percent (12 kilotonnes).
    Construction emissions were little changed, up 1.4 percent (4 kilotonnes).
    Manufacturing emissions were little changed, up 0.1 percent (3 kilotonnes).

  28. It’s like the government and opposition want to make it as hard as possible to try to have a cheap roof over someones head, while destroying existing housing, the environment and creating as much landfill as possible.

    Someone tell Labeen, that the industry partners and woke led 3 bedroom 2 bathroom new builds available hasn’t eventuated in the decades they have been demolishing all the state houses, and having ones own roof even if run down, is better than having no roof or being in emergency housing where someone might put an axe through your head. I guess reality doesn’t go beyond the Wellington $200,000 wage expectations…

    ‘Horrific’: Iwi’s fury after houses destined for desperate families demolished
    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/kahu/horrific-iwis-fury-after-houses-destined-for-desperate-families-demolished/5F2AM7M3JMQX2234MUGPOKLUU4/

    So let’s blame James as much as the rest of them, because he is one of many in government flogging a dead horse that the Natz also flogged without any affordable housing, for a decade.

    It doesn’t work to privatise or PPP state houses!!!! For every person they give NZ residency too, they should have to have an affordable house built by the state! In addition before any demolition of existing housing, they should have to put forward how they plan to replace it with an existing price point and quality house!

    AKA not demolish a $500k 3 bedroom house, to build apartments where a one bedroom is now $500,000 with body corp fees, or a terrace at 1 million dollars. With the working class neighbours subsidising the developers profits with higher rates! Meanwhile the kids of the neighbours as they grow up, can’t afford the new housing in the community they used to live in as their wages haven’t had the same profits!

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