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NZ may back out of emissions target

NZ may back out of emissions target

Auckland, 30 September 2009 - Greenpeace is warning that the New Zealand Government could back out of its 10%-20% emissions reduction target, after New Zealand’s climate change Ambassador Adrian Macey told a journalist attending the climate change talks in Bangkok that New Zealand could offer a target weaker than 10% if it doesn’t get what it wants in the talks.

“It’s a measure of the Government’s lack of commitment on climate change that it's threatening to not even meet a weak target,” said Greenpeace New Zealand spokesman Geoff Keey, who's in Bangkok.

In an interview with Point Carbon, Ambassador Macey said, “If our conditions are not met we reserve the right to drop (our target) below 10 per cent.”

Unlike many developed countries in the climate change talks, New Zealand has refused to offer a unilateral target (a commitment to take action no matter what other countries do).

“It’s really unfortunate that New Zealand is taking such an intransigent approach to tackling climate change when many countries in Asia are taking the lead," said Keey. "China and India have announced solid plans to take action. Indonesia has unilaterally offered to reduce its emissions 26% below business as usual and will do over 40% below 1990 levels with help from developed countries.

“The Philippines made a passionate call for action on climate change yesterday, citing the number of people who've been killed by recent extreme weather in its capital Manila.

"New Zealand is looking badly out of place, relying on a weak emissions trading scheme, under which emissions will actually rise, to claim we're taking action."

Greenpeace is calling for the New Zealand Government to commit to a 40% by 2020 emissions reduction target. It is supported in this by 125,000 New Zealanders who've so far joined its Sign On campaign (www.signon.org.nz).


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