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New Zealand far exceeding our fair share of emissions

New Zealand far exceeding our fair share of emissions

If every nation was polluting the climate as much as New Zealand, we would push the world into dangerous climate change in just 10 years a new report from the United Nations Environment Programme shows, the Green Party said today.

The United Nations Environment Programme Emissions Gap Report 2014 released earlier this week identifies a carbon budget the world needs to follow for the rest of the century to avoid dangerous climate change. If every country emitted at the same per capita level of emissions as New Zealand currently does the allowed amount for the century would be exceeded in just 10 years.

“New Zealand is currently emitting more than seven times our fair share of greenhouse gases per person – and National is planning on increasing greenhouse gas emissions further,” Green Party Co-leader Dr Russel Norman said today.

“If every country in the world emitted at the same rate as New Zealand is currently emitting at, the budget for greenhouse gas emissions for the rest of the century would be blown by 2025.

“Most New Zealanders would think that National’s plan to increase our emissions by 50 percent in the next decade is irresponsible.

“National’s climate policy is taking New Zealand in the wrong direction.

“We need a plan to meet our emission reduction targets, instead of a plan to increase emissions,” said Dr Russel Norman.

“The Government needs to give an indication at the Lima Climate Conference in December about our 2030 target, and it needs to be a lot better than the five percent by 2020 target,” said Green Party international climate change negotiations spokesperson Dr Kennedy Graham.

For more information:
Link to calculations:

New Zealand climate facts
• Currently fifth highest emissions per capita in the OECD and they are increasing.
20 percent increase in net emissions under National.
• Ministry for Environment report released this month shows a 50 percent increase in NZ’s projected net emissions. (See MfE Annual Report 2014 page 68)
Advice from officials is that the gap between our reduction commitments and reality is widening.
Ministry for the Environment briefing indicating New Zealand is currently on track to miss our 2050 emissions reduction target.


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