A Week of It: Climate Coalition and Other Stunts
A Week of It: The Climate Science Coalition and Other Stuntsby Kevin List
This week saw the birth of an entirely new lobby group aimed at easing the public's fears about a climate change apocalypse.
The New Zealand Climate Science Coalition is a group of scientists who have nobly taken it upon themselves to make certain SUV drivers, coal-fired power station owners and dairy farmers feel good about potentially frying the earth.
Sadly, there are those with an interest in making people feel bad about burning fossil fuels who have already hinted that the coalition's motives may not be entirely altruistic.
Greenpeace pointed out in a press release this week that the forces of big oil have been behind similar schemes overseas. Duty-bound to check out whether or not this was the case in New Zealand, Scoop contacted the biggest of big oil companies, Exxon-Mobil, and were told by a spokesperson in a very forthright manner that this was not the case. Scoop followed up this somewhat tense and not entirely pleasant verbal altercation with a number of written questions but has yet to receive a response from Exxon-Mobil.
A far more pleasant verbal interaction was enjoyed earlier in the week with Owen McShane, who happens to be the coalition's establishment committee convenor. When not assisting right-thinking scientists to engage in climate change denying discourse, Mr McShane is also the director of the Centre for Resource Management Studies(CRMS), a small think tank aimed primarily at making the Resource Management Act more 'business friendly'.
The chairperson of the CRMS and one of two trustees is a Mr Alan Gibbs. Scoop asked Mr McShane if that was the same kiwi entrepreneur Alan Gibbs that was recently famous for inventing the Aquada – a car that runs on both land and water. Mr McShane confirmed to Scoop that is was indeed the very same Alan Gibbs.
Interestingly it turns out that Mr Gibbs is not only the man behind the Aquada but has set his sights on creating something with a little more grunt, namely the Humdinga. According to promotional material the Humdiga is an SUV/4WD amphibious vehicle powered by a 350 BHP V8 engine, capable of 160 kmh on land and on water.
A Week of It reckons it's just the sought of vehicle a Climate Science Coalition member would feel happy to own given that even if the climate is changing it's probably caused by sun spots.
Eager to find out how Scoop's small investment in NZ film was going (advertising on Randy Campbell's jacket) it was off to the Wellington Ferry Terminal for one unlucky photographer in early April. Possibly the only actually funny TV comedy show ever made in New Zealand, 'The Back of the Y' is now being brought to the big screen with the assistance of the new digital film fund. While standing in the bracing Wellington air it was a veritable privilege to share a verbal intercourse with the producer of the Devil Dared Me To Karl Zohrab.
Tragically due to an accidental deletion most of Mr Zohrab's words are now molecules of air scattered throughout the atmosphere. However one point made by Mr Zohrab is that government funding, when it assists in making a digital film starring the Back of the Y gang, is very definitely not lame. Fans of the TV series will probably remember the (hopefully) fake poo sculpted into the shape of NZ being flushed down the dunny with the graphic 'Government funding is lame' attached.
It would seem that the fake plastic poo graphic will not be appearing at the end of the Devil Dared Me To - a movie which is set in the wild world of kiwi stuntmen and stuntwomen - and is according to the publicity blurb a "gasoline soaked action/comedy [that] is set to explode at the end of 2006.