Rush To 2050 Emissions Target Foolhardy
ACT Deputy Leader and Climate Change Spokesman John Boscawen today demanded to know how Climate Change Minister Dr Nick
Smith could propose to reduce New Zealand greenhouse gas emissions to 50 percent below 1990 levels by 2050 when he does
not even know what effect this target will have on jobs and GDP.
“ACT lodged written Parliamentary Questions about the implications of the 2050 target on jobs, GDP, our relative status
as a polluter, and our ‘clean green’ image. The Minister’s response was that modelling wasn’t possible due to the number
of uncertainties, and a reliance on other countries to also reduce their emissions,” Mr Boscawen said.
“Put simply: the Government has set a target for reducing emissions without having any clue about the effects it will
have on the country – in fact, Dr Smith cannot even say with certainty whether or not the scheme will help the climate.
“Once again we see the Minister acting irresponsibly on climate change and emissions – despite the massive uncertainties
surrounding his target he proposes to publish it in the ‘New Zealand Gazette’ and formally commit New Zealanders to
“New Zealanders already face challenging economic conditions, and are struggling with the cost burden imposed by the
implementation of the ETS. The last thing we need is to risk an unknown economic outcome for a scheme that won’t even do
what it’s supposed to.
“It is completely untenable for the Government to commit us to this target and I urge Dr Smith to scrap it. At the very
least, he should delay committing us to it until New Zealand families can be safely assured they will not be hurt by the
Government’s climate change aspirations even further,” Mr Boscawen said.