Greenpeace says the acid test of Jacinda Ardern’s second term will be her Government’s ability to deal with global crises.
Not just the unexpected crises like Covid - but the ones we already know about - like climate change and biodiversity loss.
"Jacinda Ardern has shown she excels at leading the nation through a crisis," says Greenpeace campaigner, Amanda Larsson. "That’s clearly one of the reasons for her landslide election result."
The Labour Government’s first term was beset with challenges which hadn’t been anticipated - such as the Whakaari / White Island eruption and the Christchurch Terrorist Attack.
The question is, says Larsson, whether Jacinda Ardern will apply the skills that she’s developed from dealing with the unthinkable, to tackling the ongoing, known crises such as climate change and biodiversity loss.
Covid-19 took most people by surprise, says Greenpeace, an unexpected threat to human existence.
"The twin threats of climate change and the destruction of nature - well we can’t say we didn’t see them coming, scientists have been warning about them for decades."
"New Year’s Eve 2020 can’t come soon enough for most people. But what will 2021 bring? To a certain extent we need to expect the expected. Two of the biggest global threats to our existence will still be right here."
"For all her careful tiptoeing around the climate in the last term, we are hoping that this huge electoral mandate will give Jacinda Ardern the confidence to make genuine transformational change for nature."
Greenpeace is urging action on three fronts - Agriculture, Transport, and Oceans - to meet these human threats head on.
"Jacinda Ardern says she wants to get straight on with it. OK, let’s see this new emboldened Government tackle climate pollution from agribusiness, illegal and destructive fishing in the oceans and seriously transform the way we get around, with electric cars, buses and trains as well as safe cycleways."
Greenpeace says that the Prime Minister now has the political capital to include these essential policies in her promise to "build back better" from Covid.