The Catholic Agency for Justice, Peace and Development

Climate Change Contribution Consultation 2015

Submission to the Ministry for the Environment on Climate Change Contribution Consultation 2015.

Summary:

  • The threat to human wellbeing and even existence posed by climate change is real.
  • The Paris climate summit may be our last effective opportunity for global agreement on the action required to keep global temperature rises below 2 degrees Celsius
  • We cannot approach this opportunity with a “business-as-usual” model, or seeking the minimum compromises necessary to preserve our status quo, while seeking large changes from others.
  • New Zealand needs to be a bold and ambitious thought leader, not a timid and responsive follower
  • The primary objective of New Zealand’s contribution should be to ensure the world collectively takes the action required to reduce emissions and eliminate the threat climate change poses for our planet and all its peoples.
  • The discussion document defines fairness too narrowly, in terms of our national circumstances, previous commitments and comparison to other countries. It needs to take into account our historical contributions and the benefits we have derived over time from fossil fuel use.
  • There are benefits and opportunities for New Zealanders in making our farms and transport more sustainable
  • The discussion document discusses the financial costs of different emission targets, but fails to analyse and explain the human, environmental and financial costs of doing nothing.

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