Archive for June, 2012

Maori call for a fundamental and philosophical shift in climate change policy in New Zealand

June 14, 2012

The New Zealand Government primary policy response to climate change has been the introduction of the Emissions Trading System (ETS), a cap and trade systems that places a price on carbon. The last 3 to 4 years the government has introduced the ETS and is currently looking to refine and fine tune the policy settings of the ETS.

Maori have signalled strongly to Government that the time is now right to shift the focus of climate change policy in New Zealand:

The ETS is fast becoming business as usual for many including farmers. The Government’s discussion document sets out a number of amendments to the ETS that will be introduced in 2012.

We support the Government’s approach to refine the ETS policy settings. However, we promote strongly that the Government shift its focus towards the development and introduction of a suite of complimentary measures as we propose above that work in parallel with the ETS towards a holistic response on climate change in line with the issues raised by Iwi/Māori raised in the Regional hui set out later in this document.

Read more here…

The focus with the ETS has been to migrate sectors into the ETS that began with Forestry with Agriculture programmed to enter in 2015. There is growing evidence that as companies and sectors have been introduced and become increasingly familiar with the complexities of the ETS, whereby making it (the ETS) increasingly business as usual. Indeed, Maori have argued that business certainty is vital and that government should ensure they don’t introduce major policy swings.

Given this, it is timely now that Government should hold to the fundamentals of its cap and trade system, (and indeed refine the system) but not spend the next 3 to 5 years on the ETS and now shift its focus on to a suite of new complimentary measures like investment into low emission technologies, renewable energy technologies and more..

What do you think?

 

 

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The Government must avoid making short-term knee jerk decisions on climate change – the united call from Iwi/Maori

June 13, 2012

The Crown must avoid making short term knee-jerk decisions around ETS amendments in favour of longer term decisions that consider economic, social, environmental and cultural interests of Iwi/ Māori and indeed all New Zealanders. This is the call from Iwi/Maori across the country as the Government ponders its choices on changes to the country’s central climate change policy instrument – the Emissions Trading System (ETS). Key points from the substantive Climate Change Iwi Leadership Group’s submission to the government are:

  • The Crown must allocate fully the 2nd tranche NZU allocations to Iwi/ Māori and must not underestimate the resolve with Iwi/ Māori should the Crown delay, dilute or delete this allocation;
  • Such an allocation is not only good for Iwi/ Māori but good for all New Zealand, as the proceeds of these units will be reinvested by Māori back into whanau and hapu communities, local and regional economies. And in turn the National economy.;
  • The Crown must not make decisions on amendments to the ETS that are inconsistent with the Treaty of Waitangi and, ensure that Iwi/ Māori do not bear any disproportionate share of any burden as a result of such amendments;
  • The Crown must recognise that the Te Ture Whenua Māori Land Act imposes unique obstacles and costs for Iwi/Māori to effectively participate in the ETS and therefore support efforts to overcome these;
  • The Crown must avoid making short term knee-jerk decisions around ETS amendments in favour of longer term decisions that consider economic, social, environmental and cultural interests of Iwi/ Māori and indeed all New Zealanders; and
  • The ETS should not be the only tool available to the Crown to tackle the challenges of Climate Change. The Crown must begin work on the development and introduction of a broader suite of complementary measures to address the issues raised by Iwi/ Māori.

A total of 47 recommendations are made in the submission that cover immediate and priority issues like allocation of 2nd tranche NZU’s (a $NZ200+ million issue for Iwi/Maori, to longer term issues like community development and sustainability, investment by the Crown with Iwi/Maori into new technology development to adapt to the impacts of climate change, recognition of indigenous forests that act as both carbon sinks and catchments of important flaura and fauna and biodiversity to New Zealand.

The challenge for the Government is that it does not fall into the trap of making short term and knee-jerk decisions that lack environmental integrity that balance off appropriately against the prevailing national and international economic issues.

For a full copy of the Iwi/Maori (Climate Change Iwi Leadership Group) submission, click here – Iwi/Maori Climate Change submission.

What do you think? Tell us below..

 


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