In this well-constructed report, Roger Brooking uses an eco-global criminological lens to explore the problem of our greenhouse gas emissions from personal vehicle use. His findings are nothing short of startling!
This report focuses on the environmental harm caused by road transport emissions in New Zealand. Using an eco-global criminology perspective, it points out that these emissions contribute to greenhouse gas emissions around the world (now over 400 parts per million) and analyses the devastating impact this is having on the climate and the environment, including in New Zealand.
According to StatsNZ (2016), the most damaging greenhouse gas
emissions emitted in New Zealand are carbon dioxide (43.8%), methane (42.8%)
and nitrous oxide (11.6%). Combining the global warming potential of these
gases into one formulation, the Ministry for the Environment reports that in
2017, the country emitted 80.9 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent
(CO2-e) – an increase of 23% on emissions in 1990. Even though our emissions
are increasing, New Zealand’s total greenhouse gas emissions make up only 0.17%
of the world’s total emissions (Greenhouse Gas Inventory, April 2019). Our tiny contribution seems to underlie the
National Party’s approach to climate change which is to not take the issue too
seriously and avoid “shutting down businesses here, only for them to go
offshore to less environmentally friendly places” (National Party website,
There’s another perspective on these statistics which is far more
concerning. Although our total emissions are small, New Zealand emits 18 tonnes
of greenhouse gases per person every year (Fyers, 2018). Per capita, that makes New Zealanders the
21st biggest contributor to global warming. Out of 43 developed countries with
international commitments on climate change (Annex I countries), this makes us
the seventh biggest contributor per person (Ministry for the Environment,
Submission on the Climate Change Response (Zero Carbon) Amendment Bill
This submission is from Professor Elizabeth Stanley and Dr Sarah Monod de Froideville. We are criminologists from the Institute of Criminology, School of Social and Cultural Studies, Victoria University of Wellington.
We support the intent of this Bill to mitigate the impacts of climate change by reducing New Zealand’s level of greenhouse gas emissions. We acknowledge the progressive elements in the Bill, including the establishment of an independent commission and the commitment, outside of this Bill, to achieving economy-wide reductions at a maximum level possible.
However, there are many elements in the Bill that are of concern. Specifically, the Bill does not appear to have considered the risks of climate change associated harm. Continue reading Reducing Climate Harms→
This submission on the Climate Change Response (Zero Carbon) Amendment Bill urges the Government to get real about climate change and call it what it is – a crisis. Written by Roger Brooking from the Honours Programme at VUW. (Submissions close July 16)
Submission on the
Climate Change Response (Zero Carbon) Amendment Bill
The Problem with the Bill
In June 2018 the Ministry for the environment published a 61-page discussion document titled: Our Climate Your Say: Consultation on Zero Carbon Bill. There is no mention of crisis or emergency in any of the 61 pages. The nearest it gets is to state that The Zero Carbon Bill proposes a plan to: “better understand the risks and to plan for how we adapt to climate change.”
The Zero Carbon Bill in its present form does not acknowledge that New Zealand, let alone the world, is facing a crisis. The Bill does not mention the word crisis or emergency even once.
(Instead, it talks about establishing “a framework by which New Zealand can develop and implement clear and stable climate change policies that contribute to the global effort under the Paris agreement to limit global average temperature increase to 1.5°C above preindustrial levels.”
It contains different sections on providing independent expert advice to the government through the establishment of a Climate Change Commission, setting emissions reduction targets, stepping stones towards those targets and processes of adaptation. Continue reading Nothing less than a Crisis→