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New climate change policy centre mooted for NZ

Friday, 25 October 2002 Media Statement

New climate change policy centre mooted for NZ

One of the world's most influential independent centres for climate change policy development is looking at establishing a presence in New Zealand.

"The Pew Centre for Global Climate Change, based in Washington DC, is a leader and innovator in the policy debate on climate change," said the Convenor of the Ministerial Group on Climate Change, Pete Hodgson. "I am very pleased that it is now considering setting up new offices to serve the South Pacific."

Mr Hodgson is in Washington leading an industry delegation looking at world's best practice in emission management by energy-intensive companies. He has discussed the Pew Center's proposal for a South Pacific office with the centre's president, Eileen Claussen, who visited New Zealand as a guest of government earlier this year.

"The Pew Center offers credible, independent advice and is respected internationally as a source of well-researched commentary on climate change science and the emerging policy responses," Mr Hodgson said. "Eileen Claussen's visit to New Zealand raised interest amongst business leaders in the business opportunities arising from a carbon-constrained world. A number asked 'Why can't we have an organisation like Pew in New Zealand?' We can, and provided they can find adequate funding, we will.

"Pew is more than a think tank. It also runs a Business Environmental Leadership Council - a group of major corporations that take on voluntary emission reduction obligations and support sensible government policies for mandatory reductions. With Pew's help, these firms have demonstrated the strong business case for pursuing better management of energy and emissions. The establishment of a Pew office in New Zealand would undoubtedly help New Zealand business position itself strategically for the post-Kyoto Protocol world."

ENDS

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