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Poll confirms Government out of step on ETS

Media statement
For immediate release
11 July 2008

Poll confirms Government out of step on ETS

UnitedFuture leader Peter Dunne says Exceltium’s Digi Poll on the emissions trading scheme confirms his party’s reasons for not supporting the Government’s proposed legislation.

“We have been arguing since December last year that New Zealanders’ support for the ETS will wane as the likely cost to their households increases,” said Mr Dunne.

“On current carbon price per tonne estimates, households are likely to face increased costs of at least $30 a week and rising, which UnitedFuture thinks is too great a burden.”

“The poll confirms our concerns are shared widely by New Zealanders, with less than 5% being prepared to put up with increased household costs of $40 a week.”

“The poll further confirms UnitedFuture’s view that while most New Zealanders believe the country does need to develop a comprehensive approach to resolving climate change issues, they want to see political action that is sustainable, whatever government is in power, and is consistent with steps likely to be taken by Australia.”

“We have always argued that to be credible, climate change policy has to have widespread political support – it cannot be rushed through on the basis of a temporary, cobbled together majority.”

“I would have thought the Government would have learnt last year from the fallout from the partisan way in which the Electoral Finance Act was pushed through of the risks of a similar approach with ETS.”

“However, this appears to not be the case, and the Government seems determined to push ahead, regardless of public and other concerns.

“All that will do is ensure that whatever is passed in haste this year will be unpicked next year, adding to the uncertainty of New Zealand’s approach to climate change policy.”

Mr Dunne says the poll findings should be a wake-up call to the Government, and should give it the opportunity to reassess its position.

“But then, I suspect the Government has probably stopped taking too much notice of the polls!” he says.


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