National MP says “No” to Lignite mining
Generation Zero applauds National list MP Michael Woodhouse for his change in attitude on the National Party’s controversial stance on expanding lignite mining in New Zealand. When prompted to answer whether or not lignite mining should go ahead with either yes or no, Woodhouse flatly answered with “No”.
The response was greeted with loud applause by a crowd of over 200 at the panel discussion titled “Win Our Vote”, which was hosted by Generation Zero at Otago University. The panel consisted of Green Co-leader Russell Norman, Labour MP David Clark, National MP Michael Woodhouse, and Janet Stephenson – Director at the Centre for the Study of Agriculture, Food and the Environment.
Audience members were provided with ‘clickers’ and were able to vote for who provided the most convincing answer to a series of questions. The question topics ranged from whether or not New Zealand's current stance on climate change is acceptable to what the future holds for New Zealand’s energy production and consumption. Each MP had ninety seconds to articulate their answers to six open questions.
At the end of the discussion, the audience were asked to vote for who had most convinced them. Russell Norman won by a commanding margin with 76% of the vote. David Clark and Michael Woodhouse received 18% and 6% respectively.
Woodhouse later told Generation Zero that his reasoning behind his answer was that he has a growing concern about the emissions released cause by the process of transforming lignite coal into diesel petrol.
‘Win Our Vote’ was a part of Generation Zero’s campaign to raise awareness that young New Zealanders want more action on climate change from the Government.