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Support for action on peak oil, climate change

Dr. Russel Norman


Spokesperson ona economics, electoral matters and trade

Growing public support for action on peak oil and climate change

28th August 2006

After three weeks on the road talking to New Zealanders Green Party Co-Leader Russel Norman has found that New Zealanders are several steps ahead of the Government when it comes to climate change and peak oil.

“While the Government is making giant steps backwards by backing out on a carbon pollution charge, and allowing dirty coal-fired power stations to go ahead, the vast majority of New Zealanders want some forward-thinking leadership and action,” says Green Co-Leader Russel Norman.

“In the last three weeks I have spoken at meetings in Takaka, Motueka, Nelson, Blenheim, Picton, Kaikoura, Christchurch, Oamaru, Dunedin, Waitati, and Riverton about climate change and the end of cheap oil,” says Green Co-Leader Russel Norman.

“My colleagues Jeanette Fitzsimons and Sue Bradford have also spoken at public meetings in Nelson, Masterton, and West Auckland.

“What’s coming through loud and clear at these meetings is that people want the Government to take action to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions and to futureproof our economy for the end of cheap oil.

“People are calling out for better public transport but the Government is obsessed with new motorways; people want investment in renewable electricity generation but the Government is allowing coal-fired power stations to proceed; the people of Hampden are already planning for peak oil while the Treasury struggles to admit its existence.

“Climate change and the end of cheap oil present us with three options:

- Do nothing – current New Zealand Government policy;

- Get our hands on the last of the oil, by force if necessary – current US Government policy; or

- Reduce our dependence on oil and reduce our greenhouse gas emissions – the Green option.

“My advice to the Government is to get out of the Beehive and talk to people. New Zealanders aren’t in denial about the global challenges we face and they want their Government to show some leadership.”


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