30 April 2002
The Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand welcomes the Government’s Preferred Policy Package on Climate Change and
their intention to ratify the Kyoto protocol as early as August.
Church spokesperson Stuart Vogel said, “New Zealand has an opportunity to take international leadership on the issue of
climate change. New Zealand will always be a small contributor to reversing global climate change, but we can play a
strong role both practically and symbolically.”
“In fact, having a fairly small population within a fairly well-forested land, New Zealand could in time go beyond the
Kyoto Protocol,” Mr Vogel continued.
The Church is impressed by the principles behind the Government’s policy direction, especially the need to take social
and economic factors into account in developing action plans and policy. “However, there is increasingly urgency for
reducing emissions and other steps in reversing climate change. These should take priority,” said Mr Vogel.
The Church has a particular concern for our Pacific Island neighbours and would like to see New Zealand advocate
internationally for initiatives to address climate change. “New Zealand getting its own house in order is a prerequisite
for playing this international role,” said Mr Vogel.
The Presbyterian Church has previously made submission on the Climate Change process and will encourage its members to
play a role in the further consultation process.