Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 


Labour unable to support Environmental Reporting Bill

Moana

MACKEY

Environment Spokesperson

5 March 2014 MEDIA STATEMENT

Labour unable to support Environmental Reporting Bill

It is with great disappointment that Labour has decided it is unable to support the first reading of the Environmental Reporting Bill in Parliament today says Labour’s Environment spokesperson Moana Mackey.

“At first glance the Bill seemed like a positive step forward towards an independent, and regular, reporting scheme on the state of the environment. Labour wholeheartedly supports the purpose of the Bill to create a “national-level environmental reporting system to ensure reporting on our environment occurs on a regular basis and can be trusted by the public as independent, fair, and accurate.”

“However while the aim of the bill is laudable, the way the reporting system is proposed to be implemented will not achieve its goals .

“Labour agrees with the need for statutory independence for reports of the type the Bill proposes. Indeed without it the reporting will have no credibility. It is extremely disappointing then that the Bill allows Ministers to control the topics that are to be reported on – one of the most critical factors in any environmental reporting system.

“Instead the critical decision on what topics will be reported on will be left to regulations made on the joint recommendation of the Minister for the Environment and Minister for Statistics.

“There is no reason why Parliament, through this Bill, could not clearly prescribe the matters to be reported upon. That would result in a reporting system that is, and is seen to be, truly independent from Government interference.

“There has been no explanation as to how Ministerial conflicts of interest are intended to be managed. Given the appalling record of this Government on environmental issues how can the public have any confidence that this will not sway their decisions on what will or will not be reported on? The Bill provides fertile ground for judicial reviews against Ministerial decisions.

“Any reassurances given by the Government that they will not abuse the regulation making powers in the Bill hardly inspire confidence given that the same assurances were given on the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) Act. The Government used those powers to remove the right of communities to have a say on deep sea exploratory oil drilling – something they explicitly promised they would not do.

“Like the EEZ Act the Government is hoping that a half-hearted ‘better than nothing’ argument will suffice. This is nothing more than election year window dressing and as such we cannot support it.

“Labour is however committed to working constructively at select committee to address these shortcomings and develop a truly robust independent environmental reporting system.”

ENDS


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Parliament Today:

The Kids: OECD Report Shows Huge Impact Of Poverty On Education

A new report from the OECD has again highlighted the negative effects of poverty, showing that disadvantaged children in New Zealand are more than six times more likely to underachieve in maths than children from wealthier homes. More>>

ALSO:

Pacific: NZ Pledges $500,000 To Help Address Zika

“With the Zika virus now confirmed in a number of Pacific countries, New Zealand is committed to helping limit the impact and spread of the virus in the region,” says Mr McCully. “New Zealand will provide $250,000 as a contribution to the WHO to implement the Pacific Zika Action Plan, and a further $250,000 to enable countries in the region to respond rapidly if required." More>>

ALSO:

Labour: Police Commissioner 'Doesn’t Get Force Needs'

The Police Commissioner has let down the public and his own force by insisting the police have what they need despite it taking a year to solve a burglary and overwhelming number of officers saying they are under-resourced, says Labour’s Police spokesman Stuart Nash. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The US Pressure To Expand Our Role In Iraq

Foreign news services are being more forthcoming about what the “next 12 months” will entail – essentially, the defence ministers will be under US pressure to increase their “training” role preparatory to an assault on the city of Mosul in northern Iraq. More>>

ALSO:

Parliament Restarts: Prime Minister’s Statement

Our policy agenda and legislative programme will reflect the Government’s four priorities: • to responsibly manage the Government’s finances • to build a more competitive and productive economy • to deliver better public services to New Zealanders, an • to support the rebuilding of Christchurch. More>>

ALSO:

NZEI Survey Report: Special Needs Students Missing Out

The survey revealed that around 16 percent of students were on schools’ special needs registers, but nearly 90 percent of schools’ special needs coordinators did not believe there was adequate support for students and their learning... More>>

ALSO:

Interim Report: Waitangi Tribunal On Ture Whenua Legislation

Labour on Proposed changes to Maori land rules: “To have Treaty Negotiations Minister Chris Finlayson dismiss findings as ‘bizarre’ is totally disingenuous and disrespectful. What’s bizarre is Maori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell stubbornly pushing through this Bill before the Waitangi Tribunal has even completed its report..." More>>

ALSO:

Spy Update: Appointment Of GCSB Acting Director

GCSB Chief Legal Advisor Lisa Fong will become the Acting Director of the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) from 15 February 2016, Minister Responsible for the GCSB Christopher Finlayson announced today. More>>

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Parliament
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news