Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


Catching The Climate Ball And Running With It

Catching The Climate Ball And Running With It

Sean Weaver, Ekos

Imagine a rugby game where a group of very capable players try to help one player called Johnny to simply catch the ball and run and score a try. Imagine Johnny just standing there, watching the ball arch across his field of view and letting it bounce away into touch. Every time.

This is what the government seems to be doing to the climate change innovation sector. Here’s the thing: emissions trading is a clever piece of policy kit originally designed to enable an emission reduction target to be reached at least cost to the economy. This, in turn, is based on sound economic analysis that shows that the real costs of doing something for reducing climate risk is non-trivial but lower than the real costs of not doing so.

A country that catches this ball and runs with it can become more energy efficient. A smart government would use the carbon price to strategically incentivize innovation by rewarding low carbon, energy efficient development, and financing the government contribution to those rewards through intergovernmental emissions trading. Hands up who do not want foreign financial incentives to help drive a transition to a more efficient economy?

The same carbon price can be used as a market signal to investors in upstream energy generation and transportation sectors so that they make the prudent decision to invest where the carbon liability will be lower: renewable energy, low carbon technologies, and smart transportation infrastructures.

On the supply side, a carbon price of NZ$15 or more can incentivise the forest sector to plant up marginal farmland in productive forestry, and enable natural forest regeneration to support catchment management in our rural hinterlands in much need of it – like the East Coast. This has the added benefit of reducing the future cost of floods and storm events that (aside from the Christchurch earthquake) are the most expensive civil calamities our country faces.

So as the ink dries on the Paris Climate Agreement, and Paula Bennett explores her role as Climate Change Minister, lets hope that she and Johnny can catch this ball and run with it, because this global challenge is not just a game.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Principals' Federation: End Of National Standards

Today the Minister of Education announced that the Government has stopped the controversial National Standards system of assessment and declared them an arbitrary measure which did not raise children's achievement as the previous Government intended.

"This is such a win for all the principals who never believed in national standards and who, for the past decade, have argued for what is morally right for our nation's young people and their learning," said Cormick. More>>


RBNZ To RNZB: PM's Press Conference

Prime Minister Jacinda Adern was joined by Minister of Finance Grant Robertson and Minister for Children Tracey Martin to announce the appointment of Adrian Orr as the new Governor of the Reserve Bank and the name change of the Ministry for Vulnerable Children to ‘Oranga Tamariki - Ministry for Children’. More>>


'Taming Globalised Capital': Why Is Labour Supporting Investment Rules In WTO?

‘Today, we learned the new government has added New Zealand’s name to a proposal designed to lead to foreign investment rules in the WTO at this week’s ministerial meeting in Argentina,’ said Auckland University Professor Jane Kelsey. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The Politics Of Scaring Voters Back Into Line

Fear has always been a useful mobilising tool in politics… yet in 2017, bogeymen of all shapes and sizes seem to have fallen on hard times. For years, the National party had painted itself as being the only reliable defensive bastion against the terrifying prospect of a centre-left government… More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Drinking Water As A Failure Of Political Leadership

It is almost possible to feel sorry for the Health Ministry in their terrible, no good, very bad week... More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Saying ‘Work For The Dole,’ Nicely

As New Zealand First learned the hard way from its two previous periods in government, small parties in MMP coalitions get blamed for the unpopular stuff done by their senior partner in power, but no one remembers the good stuff the junior player brought to the table... More>>





Featured InfoPages