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Doubling ETS tax acceptable to Minister but not to Kiwis

The New Zealand

Climate Science Coalition

16 September 2011


Doubling ETS tax acceptable to Minister but not to Kiwis


“The Caygill Review’s recommendation for doubling the current emissions trading scheme (ETS) energy levy over the next three years my be acceptable to the Minister for Climate Change, but It is certainly not acceptable to the people of New Zealand”, said Hon Barry Brill, chairman of the New Zealand Climate Science Coalition.


“The Government’s constant refrain has been that New Zealand will not try to be a world leader and that kiwis will never be forced to do more than their ‘fair share’ in reducing emissions” said Mr Brill.


“What’s ‘fair’ about the ETS?

• No other country has an ETS on petrol.

• No other country has an ETS on the diesel used for key export industries.

• No other country’s ETS covers the transport sector - "a tax on everything".

• No other country has considered putting an ETS on food production and farming.

• No other country has an ETS on methane, ozone and nitrous oxide;

• No other countrty has an ETS which increases the price of ALL electricity;

• No other country has enacted an ETS since 2004.

• No other country outside of Europe has EVER enacted an ETS.


“New Zealand was not only the first country in the world to enact a national ETS, we are also the only country to have one now, in 2011”, said Mr Brill. “We were world leaders all right, but nobody followed.”

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“The Government’s excuse for the legislation in 2009 was our huge future liability under the Kyoto Protocol. We now know that the protocol will expire next year, and won’t be repeated. The review found a ‘dominant view that international uncertainty would prevail’ in the foreseeable future.


“Hon Nick Smith says he is ‘calibrating New Zealand’s approach relative to our key trading partners’. Can this be true? USA, China, Japan, Canada and South Korea, have all considered and rejected a national ETS. That leaves Australia – where an electorate which voted against carbon pricing might (or might not) have a temporary tax imposed by a single vote.”


“Opinion polls here and elsewhere have recorded a constant erosion of support for climate policies. In most democracies, the views of the majority are respected.”


“Carbon trading is in disarray all over the globe. The Chicago market is bankrupt, the European market is beset by endless scandals, and sub-prime credits are flooding into the New Zealand market”, said Mr Brill.


“At the same time, the received wisdom paraded as ‘the science’ is flummoxed by the fact that there has been no global warming this century, and its frayed paradigm is under real threat.”


“New Zealand is struggling to recover from a long recession, while coping with the Christchurch earthquakes. This is not the time for doubling energy taxes” concluded Mr Brill.

Ends

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