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


Chauvel: Speech at March for Planet A

Click to enlarge

07 December 2009 Speech
“Keep the pressure on” – speech at March for Planet A, Wellington

December 5, 2009

My name is Charles Chauvel. I’m Labour’s Climate Change Issues Spokesperson. I just want to say on behalf of my Labour colleagues – including Grant Robertson, the MP for Wellington Central – thank you very much for marching today. Thank you for coming to Parliament to make your voices heard, and thank you for 'Signing On' because that's a fantastic thing to do make your voices heard.

Over the course of this year, this National Party/Maori Party/ACT/Peter Dunne Government has been going backwards on climate change. Since they took office they've just shown that they don't take this issue seriously. Just a fortnight ago, it put in place an emissions trading scheme as their major solution to climate change. Do you know what the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment told us? That emissions trading scheme will see pollution rise. Shame. Not only will it see pollution rise, according to Parliament's own expert in this area, but at the same time you and me as taxpayers will be transferring massive amounts of wealth over the next forty years to polluters. The amount that they're going to add to the national debt to fund their ETS is around one hundred and ten billion dollars. That's seventy five years of policing, or ten years of health spending that they want to give to help to help polluters continue to pollute. You tell me what makes sense about that – that's right, nothing.

Worse than that, we're seeing New Zealand's international negotiators team up with the wrong countries. We're acting as a really bad neighbour to our Pacific Island country partners who are going to be the first to feel the effects of climate change most drastically. We are doing the wrong thing and teaming up with the wrong people internationally, and this Government is going badly backwards.

Earlier this year, Keisha Castle-Hughes called on John Key to Sign On. Do you remember what he said? He said: “stick to acting, don't give up your day job”. Let's tell John Key who's getting bad advice. It wasn't Keisha giving him bad advice, it was him getting bad advice from Nick Smith, Tim Groser, Murray McCully and all the big-business interests that he is now going to subsidise to pollute for many years to come. Shame on John.

He had to apologise to Keisha. But you heard from Jim Salinger before – a Nobel laureate – how a couple of weeks ago on the steps of Parliament he came along with Lucy Lawless the fantastic New Zealand actor. They came with a cheque and a boarding pass for John Key. They wanted him to go to Copenhagen. They raised the money, the five thousand dollars in that cheque, from cake stalls, sausage sizzles and community donations. Do you think John Key would come down from his office to talk to them? No. Just like John Key had to apologise to Keisha, he owes an apology to Jim and to Lucy Lawless. I'm not holding my breath.

Charles Chauvel and
Meteria Turei
Click to enlarge

The bad news today is that nothing is being done quickly enough to confront the problem of climate change. The bad news is that John Key is going to Copenhagen, but do you know how long he's going for? A day. He's flying across the world to go to the Copenhagen conference for a day, the ultimate in gesture politics. An absolute waste of money, and can you imagine the carbon footprint?

The good news is that by participating in these marches, by emailing your MP, by recycling and by using public transport, you've sent a powerful message to the Government. You've shown that people care. It's you who forced John Key to go to Copenhagen, even though he isn't going for long enough. So my message to you is keep the pressure on. At the next election, only vote for political parties who share your concern about the climate. I'll see you at the next march, and the next one, and the one after that, because we're going to keep doing this until this Government listens and until it takes this issue seriously.

But the good news is that by signing on, by participating in marches, by emailing your MP, by recycling and by using public transport, you have sent a message to the Government. You have shown them that people care. You forced John Key to go to Copenhagen. Keep the pressure on. At the next election, only vote for political parties that share your concerns about the climate. I’ll see you at the next march, and the next one, and the one after that - because we are going to keep doing this till the Government finally starts taking this issue seriously.

Kia ora, kia kaha to you all. It's an honour to stand with you.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The SFO’s Investigation Of New Zealand First

On one level. New Zealand First has been the agent of its own misfortune. The New Zealand First Foundation handling the donations at the centre of the Serious Fraud Office investigation was reportedly (a) authorised by the NZF party’s board and (b)the money was apparently used to finance the party’s activities. Yet the disclosure trail remained opaque. According to its critics, NZF can’t have it both ways: it can’t claim that the foundation and the party were entirely separate legal entities, and then go to court to try and block the SFO from releasing its findings because of the likely impact on the party’s electoral fortunes... More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Whether This Election Is Already A Foregone Conclusion

Currently, this election looks like being a no contest. The weekend’s Newshub poll has the centre left enjoying a roughly 57-36% lead over the centre right. Labour is on 50.1% and the Greens 6.5%, while National remains in the dreaded 20s at 29.6% More>>


Serious Fraud Office: Files Charges In Relation To NZ First Foundation Donations

The SFO has filed a charge of ‘Obtaining by Deception’ against two defendants in the New Zealand First Foundation electoral funding case. The charges were filed on 23 September. The defendants have interim name suppression and so cannot be named ... More>>


Economy: Business Leaders’ Confidence Tanks As Top Kiwi CEOs Vent Their Frustrations

The New Zealand Herald’s Mood of the Boardroom 2020 Election Survey has been released with top business leaders saying New Zealand’s Covid-19 recovery is in peril – and they want a decisive role with Government in the country’s future. The annual ... More>>


Poll: Newshub-Reid Research Poll Shows National Rising But Labour Still Governing Alone

With less than three weeks to go, Labour remains in a position where it could govern alone in the latest Newshub-Reid Research poll* on 50.1% - down 10.8 percentage points. National has risen slightly to 29.6% (up 4.5 percentage points), but even with the ... More>>


Government: Taking Action To Reduce Waste And Plastics

Phase out single use and hard to recycle plastics by 2025 Create a $50m Plastics Innovation Fund to develop alternatives Standardise kerbside recycling The Labour Party is taking the next step in removing plastic rubbish from our oceans and environment ... More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Last Night’s Leaders Debate

Do political debates change voter intentions, and cause voters to switch sides? According to a 2019 Harvard Business School study conducted across 61 elections in nine countries involving 172,000 respondents, the answer would seem to be a resounding ... More>>


Dunne Speaks: The Election Campaign Just Grinds Slowly On And On

With just over three weeks until the General Election, the release of the first major pre-election opinion poll this week confirmed what was already being reported about this year’s campaign. Although the gap between Labour and National has narrowed ... More>>

Electoral Commission: Candidate And Party Lists Released

17 registered political parties and 677 candidates will be contesting the 2020 General Election Nominations have now closed and the Electoral Commission has released the electorate and party list candidates for 2020 online at . Advance voting ... More>>

National: Plan To Restore NZ’s Prosperity

National’s Economic and Fiscal Plan carefully balances the need to invest in infrastructure and core public services while also reducing tax pressure on Kiwi families and businesses. National Leader Judith Collins and Finance spokesperson Paul Goldsmith unveiled National’s ... More>>






InfoPages News Channels