Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 

Iwi leader launches climate case against major corporates


Seven of New Zealand's top carbon emitters are being sued for their
failure to protect New Zealanders from climate change, in a new High
Court proceeding filed this week.

Climate activist and spokesperson for the Iwi Chairs Forum’s Climate
Change Iwi Leaders Group, Mike Smith (Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Kahu), made the
announcement on the eve of his departure to Mexico where he will be
one of the representatives for the Pacific region at an Indigenous
peoples climate forum .

Smith is alleging that the named companies have committed public
nuisance, have been negligent or breached other legal duties by
emitting greenhouse gases and by not doing enough to reduce those
emissions in the face of scientific evidence that their emissions have
caused, and will continue to cause, harm.

“Māori are particularly vulnerable to climate change, being
disproportionately represented amongst the poor, who will be the
hardest hit. Rising sea levels, coastal erosion, flooding and storm
surges will irrevocably damage low lying coastal communities, and
warming oceans and ocean acidification will damage traditional
resources, including fisheries.”

The companies named in the proceedings, representing major direct or
indirect emitters from a range of different economic sectors, are:

FONTERRA CO-OPERATIVE GROUP LIMITED

GENESIS ENERGY LIMITED

DAIRY HOLDINGS LIMITED

NEW ZEALAND STEEL LIMITED

Z ENERGY LIMITED

THE NEW ZEALAND REFINING COMPANY LIMITED

BT MINING LIMITED

These new claims follow earlier legal proceeding lodged against the
Government last month, which are currently before the High Court.

While Smith acknowledged the Government’s efforts in enacting the Zero
Carbon Act, he said steps to tackle climate change do not go far
enough and he is asking the Courts to intervene.

“The urgency of climate change means we need far greater action and we
need it now, and not just from government but also across the private
sector” he says.

“It’s not good enough just to set far off targets, especially ones
that let our biggest polluters like the agricultural sector off the
hook so they can have a bit more time to turn a profit. The fact is
we are out of time and are now looking at damage control.”

The case against the companies is brought by Mike Smith, in his
personal capacity, to protect his customary interests in land and
resources in Northland. The litigation seeks relief including a
declaration that the companies have acted unlawfully, and an
injunction requiring each of them to reduce total net greenhouse gases
by half by 2030, and to zero by 2050, or to otherwise cease their
emitting activities immediately.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Commerce Commission: Warns Genesis Over Business Billing Errors

The Commerce Commission has issued a warning to Genesis Energy Limited about billing errors concerning electricity line charges to business customers. Genesis reported the errors to the Commission. The Commission considers that Genesis is likely to ... More>>

QV: Tax Changes Yet To Dampen Red-Hot Housing Market

Just over a month has passed since the Government announced measures aimed at dampening the rampant growth of the property market, and yet the latest QV House Price Index data shows the market hit a new high in April. The average value increased 8.9% nationally ... More>>

Stats NZ: Consents For New Homes At All-Time High

A record 41,028 new homes have been consented in the year ended March 2021, Stats NZ said today. The previous record for the annual number of new homes consented was 40,025 in the year ended February 1974. “Within 10 years the number of new homes ... More>>

The Conversation: Why Now Would Be A Good Time For The Reserve Bank Of New Zealand To Publish Stress Test Results For Individual Banks

Set against the backdrop of an economy healing from 2020’s annus horribilis , this week’s Financial Stability Report (FSR) from the Reserve Bank (RBNZ) was cautiously reassuring: the country’s financial system is sound, though vulnerabilities remain. More>>

Reserve Bank: Concerned About New Zealand's Rising House Prices

New Zealand house prices have risen significantly in the past 12 months. This has raised concerns at the Reserve Bank of New Zealand – Te Putea Matua about the risk this poses to financial stability. Central banks responded swiftly to the global ... More>>

Westpac: Announces Strong Financial Result

Westpac New Zealand (Westpac NZ) [i] says a strong half-year financial result has been driven by better than expected economic conditions. Chief Executive David McLean said while the global COVID-19 pandemic was far from over, the financial effect on ... More>>