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Climate Change Minister missing in action

Climate Change Minister missing in action

Auckland 17 November 2008 - The National Party’s press release detailing Cabinet posts makes no mention of the environment and climate change portfolios, nor the MP who’s rumoured to be heading them.

“Does this mean Nick Smith has abandoned his party after it sold out to ACT over climate change? Or is it that the party has abandoned the environment once and for all?” asked Greenpeace Political Advisor Geoff Keey.

“To not even mention the environment or climate change in its press release suggests New Zealand’s clean and green reputation is of no interest to National. This is nonsensical; given that leader John Key has taken responsibility for one of the sector’s most reliant on it - tourism.

“How is Mr Key going to explain to potential visitors that New Zealand has abandoned what little credibility it had on climate change? It’s a huge incentive for potential visitors to stay away from New Zealand.”

Meanwhile, Gerry Brownlee has picked up the energy portfolio.

“This is the same Mr Brownlee who has publicly labelled coal as sexy.(1) You have to wonder what kind of message this sends to the world.

“Key seems intent on setting New Zealand up for global disgrace and irrelevancy. With Barack Obama heading for the White House, New Zealand is about to look very out of step with the world.”

Greenpeace is calling on the new Government to set an emission reduction target of 30 per cent by 2020, and put in place the policies to reach that target. It is also demanding that the New Zealand delegation heading to the next UN climate talks in Poznan Poland in two weeks agrees to binding emission targets. (2)

Contact: Geoff Keey, Greenpeace Political Advisor – 021504486
Kathy Cumming – Communications and Media - 021 495 216

(1) http://brownlee.co.nz/index.php?/archives/41-Video-Newsletter-5.html

(2) binding emissions reductions for developed (Annex 1) countries of between 25-40% by 2020 (on 1990 levels) and an overall emissions reduction target for developed (Annex 1) countries for the period 2013 – 2017 that is consistent with achieving the above reductions by 2020


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