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New Zealand’s Climate Policies Need Urgent Change

Press Release

New Zealand’s Climate Policies Need Urgent Change

The Wellington Regional Chamber of Commerce today welcomed the release by the Greenhouse Policy Coalition of a new economic report by economic consultancy Castalia on the economic implications of continuing to try to meet New Zealand’s Kyoto Protocol targets.

“The conclusions of the Castalia report are very much in line with the New Zealand Chambers of Commerce and Industry analysis. In our 2005 Election Manifesto we opposed the introduction of a carbon tax because it would have a negative impact on the economy – at a time when it is likely to be slowing for other reasons, and because it probably would not have the desired impact of reducing emissions. The Chambers want the Government to consider seriously the possibility of withdrawing from the Kyoto Protocol at the earliest possible opportunity (2008) and to look at new and more effective policy instruments – such as new technologies – to reduce emissions,” said Charles Finny, CEO of the Wellington Regional Chamber.

“The Castalia Report demonstrates clearly what the economic impacts will be if we continue down our current course. We need to change this course quickly to avoid serious and negative economic consequences flowing from poor policy. If even Tony Blair, one of the longstanding champions of the Kyoto Protocol is questioning its philosophy you have to wonder why New Zealand is not also signalling clearly its willingness to change course,” Charles Finny continued.

“The Chambers of Commerce are following international developments closely and hope that New Zealand will give serious consideration to the possibility of joining with our key economic partners – Australia, Japan, the United States, China and Korea – in the Asia Pacific Partnership on Clean Development and Climate Change. The focus of this partnership on investment in technology solutions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions appears a far more appropriate policy response to Climate Change that the policies currently adopted by the New Zealand Government”, Charles Finny concluded.


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