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Time for Nats to come clean on Kyoto

Thursday, 04 September 2003 Media Statement

Time for Nats to come clean on Kyoto

The National Party has to come clean on whether it would withdraw New Zealand from the Kyoto Protocol, says Pete Hodgson, the Convenor of the Ministerial Group on Climate Change.

"Over the last few weeks the National Party has been squirming around when asked if it would withdraw New Zealand from the Protocol.

"National's agriculture spokesman David Carter was reported in The Press on June 28 saying National 'would not pull out of the Kyoto agreement unless it was shown to be putting New Zealand at a disadvantage'.

"However his leader, Bill English, told farmers in Invercargill on Saturday 23 August that National "was committed to investigating how it could take New Zealand out of Kyoto", according to the Southland Times and others present.

"If Bill English is now saying National intends to withdraw New Zealand from the Kyoto Protocol, let him say so without the weasel words," Mr Hodgson said.

"National governments signed the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, negotiated New Zealand's Kyoto Protocol target and began developing policy to meet New Zealand's Kyoto obligations, including proposals for a carbon tax and tradeable emissions permits.

"If Bill English is taking National backwards more than a decade in its approach to climate change, let's hear it loud and clear. Farmers in particular need to know whether there is anything real behind the National Party's feeble posturing on this issue."

ENDS

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