You and your party are about to blow it big time on climate policy. The finance and expenditure select committee that you chair failed to produce a credible consensus measure to address the most transformational economic and environmental challenge the Key Government will ever face … however long it serves. Perhaps we should just accept the irrelevance of your select committee process, since the Maori deal — all that mattered to National — was obviously cut elsewhere.
I invite you to address a public meeting here in Hastings or Havelock North to explain this sorry state of affairs and your role in it. Of course, it would have been preferable if this meeting occurred before National jams half-baked legislation through the Parliament on Thursday. But, we’d still like to be edified … maybe we just don’t understand how no hard emissions cap and rollback represents progress.
You set the date; we’ll pay for the hall and refreshments. Bring that fellow Nick Smith with you.
Be assured, BayBuzz will guarantee you a packed house!
Why this invitation?
Read this: “A costly exercise in hypocrisy”
Or this: “ETS will cost our children”
The first of these articles, written by Rod Oram, is the most damning, as it uses National Environment Minister Nick Smith’s own words to underscore the folly of National’s rush to ill-considered legislation:
“The importance of getting this legislation right cannot be overstated. [The development of an ETS] represents the most significant economic reform since the deregulation of the economy in the late 1980s. Getting this bill right is also important for the environment. Poor policy can also have unintended adverse environmental consequences.”
Moreover, “the legislative process has been rushed and inadequate given the bill’s complexity and significance. The public has not had adequate time to examine and submit on the bill, and it is inevitable that serious mistakes will be made that will adversely affect New Zealanders”.
Thus, “this process has not been conducive to getting such an important bill right nor in getting the cross-party support needed to ensure the stability and longevity of New Zealand’s ETS”.
Oram continues: “So wrote Smith last year in National’s minority report on Labour’s ETS bill. Yet, now it’s his turn to steer the legislation, his hypocrisy is breath-taking.
He slammed Labour last year for the long-term estimates of the potential cost to the government of its ETS. Yet, now that Treasury has doubled the estimates, thanks to the changes Smith is proposing, he argues that such estimates have no legitimacy because they involve so many unknowns.
The government could call a halt to this damage to itself, parliament, the treaty process, the economy and environment by passing a simple bill to delay the timetable of the current ETS. After Copenhagen, we could take more time to get this right.”