Today the Government announced they were going to be spending $2.9 billion on an Emissions Reduction Plan to combat Climate Change.
Perhaps I was being naïve or overly-optimistic, but I thought they were about to say they were going to do something really practical and helpful. Instead, it seems most of the money will be going on various working groups to investigate how they can use either carrots or sticks on high-energy users like farming and the transport industry, to get them to reduce their carbon emissions. A lot of this research has already been done overseas.
What about spending $2.9 billion on something practical like establishing recycling centres for electronics and batteries, or creating more infrastructure to cope with the expected demand for electric vehicles, or maybe promoting more energy efficient housing, along with educating the public on how to reduce their environmental footprint, or even developing public transport so people don’t need to use their cars as much?
The stated hope is that by 2035 we will be less reliant on cars and will be travelling 20% less kilometres than we do now. That is a great ideal, but is it practical?
How much individual responsibility does the world expect us to shoulder? I’m told that our current daily rate of carbon emission is equal to about one hour in China, so how much do we really need to do to be able to say we are doing our part?
|Photo Credit: New Zealand Embassy of Ireland|
New Zealand is a reasonable sized country – our land mass is 10% greater than the United Kingdom – and yet our population is a tiny five million. To put that into perspective, it is about the same as the population of Melbourne (Australia), a little more than half of the population of London (England), and a little less than half of the population of Los Angeles (United States of America).
We don’t have enough people to support grandiose ideals and the re-invention of the wheel. But we do have enough people who love their country and would be only too willing to make lifestyle adjustments if they were given a little incentive and some practical direction.
And now I will apologise and say, “Sorry.” I normally try not to rant and rave on my blog, but I felt so disappointed this afternoon that I had to say something.
I must say, I feel better now that I have said my piece!