Generation Zero and the left

There’s obvious similarities between Generation Zero’s focus on climate change, sustainability, cleaner energy and transport and reducing fossil fuel use to the Green Party environmental policies. And also to the Internet Party’s environmental policies.

This will be obvious when Generation Zero rate the parties during this campaign as they rated candidates for local body elections (with strong correlations between support for their aims and left wing candidates).

While environmental policies needn’t be exclusive to the left (and they aren’t) both the Greens and IP are regarded as left wing parties, so it aligns Generation Zero fairly clearly with the left of New Zealand politics.

Generation Zero publicly indicated support for aspects of the Labour and Greens’ policies, including the focus on renewable energy and energy efficiency.

http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1304/S00295/generation-zero-welcomes-focus-on-electricity-industry.htm

Generation Zero Tells the Naked Truth About Our Transport Future:

Generation Zero’s has launched its 50/50 campaign, which is calling for the Government to allocate a greater share of its transport spending to “smart transport” options such as public transport and cycleways.

And…

Generation Zero lays down election challenge in new report

Youth organisation Generation Zero has released a report today calling for political parties to show leadership on climate change by committing to develop and implement a plan that will see New Zealand phase out fossil fuels for all energy and transport needs by 2050.

http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1405/S00034/generation-zero-lays-down-election-challenge-in-new-report.htm

That’s far removed from Act or National policies.

While their policies could in part at least be supported by any party Generation Zero focus is clearly far more closely aligned with the left than the right.

While Generation Zero is a non-partisan party in principal in practice it works alongside the left in New Zealand.

I applaud their aims, but I question the financial and social costs of fully implementing their ideals. It’s good to have a strong young person environmental lobby, but they are yet to learn the realities of the potential impact of making such major changes so quickly.

Leave a comment

5 Comments

  1. Phil Wild

     /  20th July 2014

    I believe they will also need in time to learn the realities of life.

    Reply
  2. Generation Zero’s focus on climate change, cleaner energy and transport also share major simiarities with actions advocated by organisations such as the OECD, the World Bank and the IMF:
    http://www.oecd.org/about/secretary-general/the-climate-challenge-achieving-zero-emissions.htm
    http://www.worldbank.org/en/programs/pricing-carbon
    http://www.worldbank.org/en/topic/urbandevelopment/brief/low-carbon-livable-cities
    http://www.imf.org/external/np/exr/facts/enviro.htm

    Are these institutions all “aligned with the left”?

    Reply
    • No, but that’s not what I said.

      Reply
    • But you are claiming that purely because we are advocating for actions to address climate change we are aligned with the left in NZ. By the logic you apply here that would clearly apply to any organisation doing the same, no? So why would you label GZ as aligned with the left but not those other organisations like the OECD and the World Bank?

      In my view this is very similar to victim-blaming. Somehow you are making it GZ’s fault that some parties (who happen to be on one side of the political spectrum) are doing very little to address this threat to our future. The accusations of GZ being aligned with a particular political ideology are just an attempt to undermine what we are saying and distract from actually debating the issues we’re seeking to bring to the fore.

      How about instead of writing pointless blogs like this, directing that energy towards the real issues we are raising? How about critiquing the political parties who are seeking to ignore the problems with continued fossil fuel dependence, and failing to act in line with expert advice from the kinds of organisations I have cited?

      Reply
      • “But you are claiming that purely because we are advocating for actions to address climate change we are aligned with the left in NZ.”

        I didn’t say that at all. I said that what you are advocating for is the same as what left wing parties are advocating for, so you are aligned with similar aims as them. And not aligned with right wing parties.

        “How about critiquing the political parties who are seeking to ignore the problems”

        It seems like you don’t know what I advocate for regarding climate change related issues. I suspect I’ve done a lot more commenting on it in forums that generally oppose accepting the issues and addressing them.

        And for your information I agree with the Green policy of switching to a carbon tax. ETS, especially without a cap, is not suitable for a small country/market like New Zealand (and I’ve taken expert advice on that).

        Reply

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