Key told not to attend Paris and to pull NZ delegation

Joint Press release with CANA, Greenpeace, 350.org

Auckland 25 September 2015 – A coalition of environmental organisations (1), is calling for John Key not to attend the upcoming Paris climate summit, and to pull Tim Groser and the entire New Zealand delegation from the two weeks of talks.

“New Zealand is proving one of the biggest blocks to a meaningful global deal in December. In the interests of a successful outcome and for the good of the climate, we’re asking that our delegation not go,” said Greenpeace climate campaigner Steve Abel.

As well as having one of the weakest climate action plans and one of the poorest emission reduction records of the developed nations who’ll be in Paris, the New Zealand delegation also wants countries’ emission targets to be non-binding under any agreement, meaning governments could walk away from their targets at any time.

“The world’s ability to manage climate change rests on these targets; they must legally oblige  governments to reduce emissions. To call for them to be non-binding is to admit defeat from the outset,” said Niamh O’Flynn from 350 Aotearoa.

“Tim Groser and our delegation’s remit will be to prevent a Paris agreement that commits New Zealand to more climate action,” said Cindy Baxter of Coal Action Network Aotearoa. “They’ll be doing everything they can to bring everyone down to New Zealand’s level, in which case the world will be heading for at least 3-4 degrees of warming.”

International analysis has found New Zealand’s pledge to reduce emissions by 11% by 2030 on 1990 levels to be “inadequate” and key elements of the policy little more than “creative accounting”. The analysis says in reality, New Zealand’s emissions are set to be 11% above 1990 levels by 2030.

“Every head of state, delegate, civic leader, civil servant, NGO representative, man and woman at the December summit should have only one objective in mind – to reach a meaningful global deal that keeps our children and grandchildren safe,” said Steve Abel of Greenpeace.

“New Zealand’s position won’t get us where we need to go; in fact it will drag us in the wrong direction. Our Government has shown neither the courage or fortitude required in Paris. It is not up to the task.

“It would be better for humanity if John Key were to stay home, and instruct Minister Groser and the delegation to do likewise.”

ENDS

(1) 350.org, Coal Action Network Aotearoa, Greenpeace New Zealand

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